Little Shop of Horrors is legendary among rock musicals. Adapted for the stage from the ‘60s B-movie — and then into a subsequent second film in 1986, based on that stage production — by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, Little Shop’s songs are a wild melange of doo-wop, surreal soul and bubblegum pop. Yet by comparison to some other Big Rock Musicals, the show and its soundtrack have seemingly never had much of a crossover moment. Grease, Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Wiz: all rely just as heavily on dark wit, big smirks, tight hooks and killer rhythm sections; each has generated some big-time, (counter)culture-permeating, standalone pop tunes. But, alas, not so with Little Shop.
Anderson .Paak – Old Town Road (Lil Nas X cover)
Given how thoroughly “Old Town Road” dominated the summer – the longest-reigning Billboard #1 in history, for those under-a-rock-dwellers among you – it seems shocking that it took until now for the first truly great cover to emerge. Less shocking: that it came from rapper/singer/drummer extraordinaire Anderson .Paak. Back in May, he performed a more straightforward version with Lil Nas X himself, but for BBC’s Live Lounge he and his band The Free Nationals reinvented it into a soul groove with shades of D’Angelo.