It’s the 10th anniversary of the founding of South Korean band Say Sue Me. And they’ve decided to acknowledge it with a covers “EP.” (“EP” is not quite literal here, as there are 8 songs, ranging from two minutes to five.)
One of those songs is “Elevate Me Later,” a track from Pavement‘s second album, Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain. It’s apparently a sequel to “Loretta’s Scars” on their debut album, though the lyrics to the two songs don’t have much in common. The original is pretty classic Pavement, sardonic, quirky indie rock which deftly balances melody with an artsy edge.
Say Sue Me take a different approach. Their cover has an almost “country lounge” or “country tropicalia” quality, with a swaying tropical rhythm and twangy guitar. Lead singer Sumi Choi has a much pleasanter delivery than Stephen Malkmus. Near the end of each verse some pleasant but mathy lead guitar comes in. And after the second verse there is a vaguely jazzy guitar solo. The biggest surprise of their version is the false ending, which comes right when you’d expect the song to end.
It’s a pretty drastic rethinking of the song. I’m not sure how much it suits the lyrics but it’s still a fun spin on a classic Pavement track, and the vibe and style feels quite divorced from the original.