On their new live cover of “Under Pressure,” indie power-pop auteurs Field Music head straight to the source. The dexterous cover of the Queen & David Bowie classic was filmed for Celtic Connections’ Roaming Roots Revue (fittingly lockdown-themed “Songs For Survival”). Brothers David and Peter Brewis inhabit the Mercury and Bowie leads respectively, nailing each iconic riff and wail with a glorious urgency. The ensemble, too, revs up the anthem with the majesty of Queen in their prime.
Field Music’s take on “Under Pressure” also has a unique offshoot. With “Under Pressure” rendered strictly in the vein of the original, the band was inspired to use their cover as a launchpad to veer off and explore their own creative impulses. The resulting original song, “No Pressure,” is directly inspired by “Under Pressure” and features on the band’s new record Flat White Moon, released in April. While both “Under Pressure” and “No Pressure” might risk presenting as rote technical exercises on the surface, Field Music bring a roving curiosity, musical aplomb and rewarding clarity to both the cover and its spawn. It’s a novel pairing, and a nice workaround for Field Music to simultaneously honor Queen and Bowie’s tune while holding steadfast to their own unique vantage.
Check out Field Music’s live cover of Queen & David Bowie’s “Under Pressure” — alongside its sister song, “No Pressure,” from Flat White Moon — below.