Jul 122024
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!

Nebraska covers

A Full Album post of covers of Nebraska? Surely, you say, Cover Me has done this before. Well, I have checked, and whilst we have published posts about officially released full album versions of Born in the U.S.A., Darkness on the Edge of Town, and Tunnel of Love, as well as our Best Ever of Bruce covers piece, and even reviews of Nebraska tribute albums here and there and here again, we actually haven’t. So then, cometh the day, and this man’s job is to find ten Nebraska covers, one of each song, while avoiding as much duplication as is possible. You up for that?
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Mar 222024
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!

Kraftwerk

Sometimes only a greatest hits will do, a necessity to hit those spots and scratch those itches. For me, Kraftwerk’s The Catalogue is one of those times.

I guess that sort of reveals me as the dilettante I try so hard to pretend I am not. But dilettante or no, I bow to no one in my like of some of Kraftwerk’s MO–which, I guess, gives it all away. It’s true, I confess to not having the traction for the band’s entire oeuvre, but the ones I know, I love. More importantly, I recognize their pivotal position, as popular music discovered the absence of a need for guitars. Tougher call than it sounds, but these guys stuck steadfastly to this template throughout various permutations for over half a century, whilst their minions and acolytes all started slyly adding guitars and, horrors, live drums. (Yes, I’m looking at you, Depeche Mode.)

The Catalogue is one of many Kraftwerk kompilations that exist, and probably the best one for the attention of Kraftwerk civilians like me, primarily as it has the highest headcount of hits. Before all start shouting at the screen, The Catalogue, as in the commercially released version, was indeed an eight-disc remastering of the original existing catalogue. But a promo single-disc compilation was also made available (and, according to Discogs, is able to buy, pre-loved, for a very reasonable outgoing). That’s the one I’m basing this Full Album post on. Is this a slightly deceitful ploy? Maybe, but this is my post and, given I actually have a copy, I can. Besides, let’s be honest–who can even remember the original of “Der Stimme De Energie”? (Go on, then, hum it!)
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Jan 192024
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!

Forever Changes covers

Love was definitively a band of and for the ’60s. Formed in 1965, their incandescent flame shone bright only until the turn of the decade, their legacy thereafter diminishing, not least as founder Arthur Lee became last man standing. Indeed, such was Lee’s imprint that he was able to trade on the name and past glories for the rest of his career and the rest of his life, even if it was mainly the first three albums – Love, Da Capo and Forever Changes – audiences wished and needed to hear.

The extravagant meshwork of styles and influences Love’s original lineup brought collectively into the mix, defied any one attempt to restrict the resultant style to any one genre. There were elements of almost raw garage rock, cheek by jowl with pastoral and orchestral interludes, with folk influences and whiffs of psychedelia elsewhere.

Lee kept the b(r)and going, on and off, more or less until his death, in 2006. Bryan MacLean, who had parted from the band acrimoniously, died in 1998, a few months after Ken Forssi did the same. Snoopy Pfisterer has long since retreated to idyllic rural isolation, with little lasting involvement in the music industry, but Johnny Echols has continued to hold a candle for the band, re-igniting the name and touring a version of the band since 2009, the show usually reliant on playing the material from those first three albums.

As for Forever Changes, it’s become a staple in the best-of lists pumped out by your Rolling Stones, your Pastes and others of that ilk. Along with a select few, such as Pet Sounds, Blonde On Blonde, Astral Weeks and Revolver, Forever Changes has become of and beyond its time, a beautiful bad trip seeing off many of the newcomers begging for comparison and subsequent attention.
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Jul 072023
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!
Nick Drake Bryter Later
There is a definite feel that the songwriting talents of Nick Drake, so overlooked and undervalued in his all-too-brief lifetime, are again coming back around into view. Suddenly a host of newer and younger artists are covering his work, like Josienne Clark and Valerie June. Plus, there is today’s release of a new tribute album, The Endless Coloured Ways, featuring artists as varied as Fontaines D.C. and Let’s Eat Grandma. So, having featured full-album posts with his first, Five Leaves Left, and last, Pink Moon, surely the time has come for us to complete his triad of albums in this series.

Bryter Layter has always seemed the most substantial of Drake’s holy trinity, perhaps down to the lush orchestrations of Robert Kirby and the stellar rhythm section of the Fairport duo, Daves Pegg and Mattacks. The latter pair were also the de facto core of the Island records house band of that time, the Oxfordshire Sly and Robbie, appearing on records by artists as diverse as John Martyn and Murray Head. True, Kirby also adorned Five Leaves Later, but with Danny Thompson’s (no less splendid) acoustic bass that time around, it was all a little more pastoral, with the difference rendering this disc with that little bit more drive and grit. Which, admittedly, are words people don’t tend to use too frequently around the maudlin and whimsical canon of Nick Drake.

Bryter Layter first came out in 1971, produced, as always, by Joe Boyd, a man who has continued to keep the flame of Drake alive, even ahead of latter recognition and accolade. But, like Five Leaves Left before, it sank like a stone, even if critics were beginning to find decent things to say. How sad that it took Nick Drake’s death, and the repercussions of that on his peers and acolytes, to get his name up in lights so many decades on. There have been other tribute albums in his memory: 1992’s Brittle Days, for instance, and 2013’s Way To Blue, the latter curated by Boyd, and I dare say there will be more. But today, in honor of the newest one, let’s make up one of our own.
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Jan 062023
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!

Can't Buy a Thrill

Can’t Buy a Thrill was always peak Steely Dan for me. Before they became too smooth, too clever, too polished and too damned good for their own damned good, they put together a set of sure fire songs that swiftly endeared them to a record buying public and remains a favorite in this household. Who can forget the gushing praise printed on the back of the cover, written by one Tristan Fabriani: “the newly formed amalgam threatens to undermine the foundations of the rock power elite.” Heady prose and, in due course, prescient, with Tristan, who played keyboards for Jay and the Americans, being eminently placed to pass such comment. Of course, you might know Tristan better under his given name: Donald Fagen.
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Oct 212022
 

Full Albums features covers of every track off a classic album. Got an idea for a future pick? Leave a note in the comments!

History America's Greatest Hits

If you were to step into a time machine and request to be sent to “a hot summer day in the early ’70s in the U.S.A.,” there’s a damn good chance History: America’s Greatest Hits would be the album blaring through the transmitter during liftoff.

History is the sound of a VW van driving toward a multi-colored sunset in 1971. It is the thunk of a frisbee landing in the mouth of a leaping dog wearing a bandana around its neck in 1972. It is the whoosh of a breeze blowing through the long, middle-parted, Herbal Essence™ scented hair of a “lady” in 1973…

Damn. Sorry about all that. I’m getting transported and I’m not even listening to History right now, I’m just freakin’ thinking about it (and trying to imagine what the hell flying alligator lizards look like).

History was released in November of 1975 and featured all the singles the soft rock trio of Dewey Bunnell, Gerry Beckley, and Dan Peek had released up to that point. Six of the album’s 12 tracks had been Top 10 hits on the Billboard pop chart: “A Horse With No Name,” “I Need You,” “Ventura Highway,” ‘Tin Man,” “Lonely People” and “Sister Golden Hair.” The album’s other six tracks didn’t hit those same heights, and they range in quality from mighty fine (“Daisy Jane”) to just okay (we’ll get to those coattail riders shortly). History went platinum both in the U.S. (4 million copies) and Australia (450,000 copies) and to this day remains the band’s best-selling album.

Now while millions of regular citizens enjoyed that sweet, windblown America sound, the music press emphatically did not. The Rolling Stone Album Guide described their music as “little more than bubblegum for adolescent hippies.” They also offered this snooty slap-and-run attack on the trio’s most popular and beloved songs:

America’s early ’70s hits were all variations on the same themes: mawkish love songs (“I Need You”), clumsy impressionism (“Horse With No Name,” “Ventura Highway”), childhood fairy-tale metaphors (“Tin Man”), and corny affirmations (“Lonely People”). 

Okay then, Rolling Stone. History class dismissed, bitches.
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