Dec 012023

“Ladies of the Road” is the raunchiest, most sexist song in King Crimson‘s catalogue; an atypical celebration of groupies from their fourth album Islands. It’s atypical due to its sex-centric, innuendo-stuffed lyrics but it’s also somewhat atypical musically, with its bluesy saxophone solos and the backing vocals in the bridge and group vocals in the coda. The song is one of those relics of the ’70s that unabashedly celebrates the sex in “sex, drugs and rock and roll.”

Former Solemn Novena lead singer Louise Patricia Crane knows her way around prog rock. Her 2020 solo debut was acclaimed by the prog music press (yes, that’s a thing) and even featured guest appearances by members of Jethro Tull and King Crimson (not an Islands-vintage member of Crimson, but rather the band’s final lead singer Jakko Jaksyk). Continue reading »

Nov 072023
Lucy Liyou

San Francisco-based Korean electronic music artist Lucy Liyou has been releasing music since 2019. Though she has sampled Mariah Carey before – albeit an interview of Mariah Carey – she is not the kind of artist you’d first image to cover the pop diva. But that’s what she’s done, as part of FADER’s new FADER & Friends: Volume 1 covers-for-charity compilation. Continue reading »

Oct 262023
moby brie o banion we're going wrong cover

“We’re Going Wrong” is a rarely covered Cream deep cut from their second album, Disraeli Gears. It’s the rare Cream song that lead singer Jack Bruce actually wrote the lyrics to, as he often worked with collaborators. There are few lyrics, though, which helps explain Bruce elongating every phrase. The song is notable for the slow pace of the Bruce’s voice and bass contrasted with Ginger Baker’s manic drums, which both build to a climax. Continue reading »

Oct 052023
john matos toto africa

It wasn’t so long ago that it felt like everybody and their grandmother was covering Toto‘s “Africa.” It turned from a popular cover song into a meme. Seemingly kicked off by Weezer’s infamous, fan-requested 2018 cover, the trend had actually been going strong for a while – there were at least 10 covers of “Africa” in 2017 alone – and the song has actually been a popular cover choice since the ’90s. The frequency has really died down in the last couple of years, though.

So it would seem that Abiotic’s John Matos, Suicide Silence’s Eddie Hermida and Mike Caputo are quite late to the party. But for anyone who perhaps got a little tired of all the straight-ahead, overly similar “Africa” covers that seemed to be absolutely everywhere 5 years ago, this might an antidote.

You see, Abiotic are a deathcore band. As are Suicide Silence. Deathcore, for those of you who don’t know, is a niche metal subgenre that combines tropes from classic death metal with some aspects of metalcore (itself a hybrid of hardcore punk and forms of metal). Like a lot of these niche metal subgenres, the sound is very specific; differentiating deathcore from other niche forms of extreme metal is likely not every easy for the average listener. But none of that really matters for this cover.

What matters is that Matos, Hermida and Caputo obliterate most of the original song. The only real concession to the original song is Matos’ guitar echoing the famous opening synth part periodically. Hermida growls and sings the chorus so aggressively you have to listen hard to hear the melody. And Matos’ guitars and especially Caputo’s drums just pummel away, removing most hints that this could be a Toto cover. If you like extreme metal covers of pop hits, and you’ve grown tired of the sheer number of “Africa” covers out there, this is for you.

Oct 042023
silent skies trooper cover

Silent Skies is a collaboration between pianist Vikram Shankar and vocalist Tom Englund of metal bands Evergrey and Redemption. We first encountered them at Cover Me when they covered Linkin Park back in April. Now they’ve tackled Iron Maiden.

“The Trooper” is one of Iron Maiden’s few hit singles outside of the UK. In addition to nearly being a Top 10 hit in the UK for them (something that became a regular occurrence), it was a rare for them Top 40 (Modern Rock) hit in the US. It’s most famous for its knotty opening guitar salvo, its instantly recognizable main riff and the breaks right before Bruce Dickinson sings his lines in the verses. Continue reading »

Oct 042023
andy miller everybody's burned cover

Adam Miller was the founder and only constant member of Chromatics, the Portland-by-way-of-Seattle electronic music group that broke up in 2021. Since then, he was released one solo album of ambient music. Now he’s returned with a cover of The Byrds “Everybody’s Been Burned.”

“Everybody’s Been Burned” is a Byrds deep cut from their album Younger Than Yesterday. Written by David Crosby before the band even existed, the chord progression and lead guitarist Roger (then Jim) McGuinn‘s understated, vaguely jazzy guitar solo made most listeners think the song was brand new, part of the Byrds’ psychedelic innovations. It’s often regarded one of David Crosby’s best songs while he was still in the group. Continue reading »