It may be controversial, to the point of being nearly heretical, to compare anyone to David Bowie. In the weeks since Bowie’s passing, there has been a near-universal outpouring of emotion – not only of grief, but of inspiration and joy and freedom that Bowie brought to people’s lives. And, despite certainly being a very different artist, Amanda Palmer has roused very similar feelings in her fans ever since debuting as one half of the Dresden Dolls in 2000 and exploding into the spotlight with her massively successful Theatre is Evil Kickstarter. To her fans, Palmer has been a beacon of originality, artistic freedom, and rebellion for over fifteen years, and now she’s joined with Grand Theft Orchestra bandmate Jherek Bischoff (along with an incredible string quartet and additional vocals from Anna Calvi, John Cameron Mitchell, and Palmer’s husband Neil Gaiman) to record a benefit tribute to Bowie himself.
Back in August, we heard British sensation Anna Calvi cover the Shirelles, Leonard Cohen, and Elvis as B-sides for various singles. Now she’s gone a little more modern on a ripping cover of TV on the Radio’s “Wolf Like Me.” Her fashionable rock swagger keeps the song classy until the end, when all hell breaks loose on one hell of a guitar solo.
Anna Calvi has developed a lovely pattern on the single releases from her self-titled debut album. The main song becomes the A-side, while a classic oldies cover gets the B-side. So far this year, she’s tackled Elvis Presley’s “Surrender” and Leonard Cohen’s “Joan of Arc” on the disc’s first singles (listen to both below). Her latest, for “Suzanne and I,” offers her third cover: the Shirelles’ “Baby It’s You.”
Quickies rounds up new can’t-miss covers. Download ’em below.
• Any Nirvana cover that abandons electric guitar earns immediate brownie points. Any Nirvana cover that replaces it with violin, accordion, and musical saw gets a full-on gold star. Horse Feathers’ “Drain You” may be the best Nirvana cover to come out of 2010. Given that 274 “Smells Like Teen Spirit”s drop every week, that’s saying something. (via PopMatters)
MP3: Horse Feathers – Drain You (Nirvana cover)