Jan 232018

review dr demento covered in punkLet’s be blunt: No one needs novelty songs.

Loosely defined as “a satirical or comedic parody of popular music,” most people instinctively leave the room – or the house – at the first whiff.

Or do they? What, then, explains the enduring popularity of Dr. Demento, querulous-voiced prankster and legitimate, if puzzling, cultural icon? A rock ’n roll writer, label A&R man, and sometime roadie, he began broadcasting a rock and oldies show at Pasadena station KPPC in 1970. He quickly found that the novelty songs he slipped in – notably Nervous Norvus’ “Transfusion,” a truly demented tale about reckless driving, and a precursor to the Cramps’ psychobilly – were what his listeners really wanted to hear.

Now 76, Dr. Demento – a.k.a. Barret Eugene Hansen – ceased terrestrial radio broadcast in 2010, though his program persists online. And now we’re treated to Dr. Demento Covered in Punk, by some counts his 15th official album release. If you’re already hooked on the good doctor’s offbeat charms, you’re likely not in need of encouragement to purchase this collection of supposedly “punk” covers (more on that later) interspersed with the Doctor’s commentary. But can we rightfully recommend this 2+ hour compilation to the rest of the record-buying public? The answer, surprisingly, is: “Yes!” Sort of.

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Sep 172010

Cover Commissions is a monthly series in which a featured artist covers a reader-selected song for this blog. Any artists interested in participating, contact us.

Avast, ye cover-lovin’ landlubbers, and cast yer deadlights this way, because I’m takin’ over this blog and there ain’t nothin’ to be done about it! As for the whereabouts of Ray, yer usual host, well, let’s just say he’s a little tied up, gagged, blindfolded and locked in a chest at the moment. Instead you get me, Black Dog Nate of Pirates For Sail, remindin’ you that September 19th is International Talk Like a Pirate Day and welcomin’ you to this all-pirate installment of Cover Commissions! Continue reading »

Mar 132010

Cover News is a weekly feature keeping you up to date on the goings-on in the world of cover tunes, tribute albums, etc. Plus, at the bottom we post the array of cover tunes we’ve been sent in the past week. Have you recorded a cool cover? Send an mp3 to the address on the right! As always, follow Cover Me on Twitter for the latest news.


This Week’s News

We’re giving away a 31-track New Order tribute album! Enter now to win. [Cover Me]

Record Store Day, the best holiday of the year, is coming up next month. You’ve heard Peter Gabriel cover Bon Iver, but on an exclusive RSD single, Bon Iver covers back! [Pitchfork]

Also at RSD, pick up the Apples in Stereo’s Travellers in Space and get free six track cover album with Ted Leo, Throw Me the Statue and more. [BeatCrave]

Ted Leo also recently covered “We Built This City.” Wow, it’s almost as good as the original! [Stereogum]

And if that’s still not enough Ted, here’s 55 more covers. [You Ain’t No Picasso]

The Clash! Sandinista! Covered! Download through tomorrow only! [Jewels and Binoculars]

Everyone’s covering the Raveonettes these days. I mean, I loved In and Out of Control as much as anyone, but why now? Two “Heart of Stone”s and a “Boys Who Rape” for your listening enjoyment. [Pitchfork, Viceland, My Old Kentucky Blog]

The Who get covered at Carnegie Hall tribute. The Gaslight Anthem, Robyn Hitchcock, Kaki King and a surprise guest! [Dylan, Etc.]

Highly Rec’d has another fun covers collection for free download. Good title too. [Box.net]

This isn’t your average YouTube Paulo Nutini cover. Have a box of tissues handy. [YouTube]

Motion City Soundtrack will perform a full set of Nine Inch Nails covers at Hoodwink. Bet they won’t be as good as these. [Alter the Press]

Björk + bass = Wild Palms. [The Music Slut]

K’Naan released one of the best albums of 2009. That doesn’t make it OK to make another “We Are the World” with one of his songs. If we all agree to donate ten dollars to Haiti, can you stop making these? [YouTube]

Phil Lesh and Friends gave Bob Dylan’s “Thunder on the Mountain” a truly mediocre performance a few years back. The Jack White-produced Wanda “Queen of Rockabilly” Jackson version promises to be way better. After all, Bob put him up to it! [Telegraph]

Beck recently finished covering Skip Spence’s Oar with Feist and friends, but it looks like the next one is in the can. Any guesses on which album? [St. Vincent]

Are Mumford and Sons the new Vampire Weekend? They seem to think so. [We All Want Someone]

Michael Grubb first hit our radar with his “Wakey!Wakey! Wednesdays” cover series. That’s over, but Prefix has a video for his new Yeasayer cover. [Prefix]

Gwyneth Paltrow is killing us softly with bad karaoke. [Videogum]

This Week’s Submissions

Tristan Clopet – Welcome to Mystery (Plain White T’s/Alice in Wonderland) [more]

Jer Coons – Love Vigilantes (New Order) [more]

Pirates for Sail – The Irish Ballad (Tom Lehrer) [more]

Kelley Ryan – Lost Cause (Beck) [more]

Send your cover to the address on the right for inclusion!