By Alex Dulude
There’s something great about a good cover song; there are many considered even more famous than the original such as Aerosmith’s version of “Come Together” by the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix’s version of “All Along the Watchtower” by Bob Dylan, or even Nirvana’s tribute to David Bowie with “The Man Who Sold the World”. Then there are those cover songs that are almost 100% different from the original, but are still great interpretations. Here are ten of my personal favorites:
1. “No Scrubs”- Bastille. The original is a 90s classic, so when I found this acoustic version by Bastille, I was pretty much sold before I even heard it. It’s definitely (?) than the original (with a British guy singing instead of the girls from TLC) but still pretty great.
2. “House of the Rising Sun”- Lauren O’Connell. The song by the Animals is actually a cover of the original that may date back to the 18th century; plenty of artists have covered it since then. So this song is a deliciously haunting cover of a cover. The Animals version is still supreme, but O’Connell’s is still powerful.
3. “Teardrop”- Jose Gonzalez. Gonzalez totally made this song by Massive Attack his own and did so with some awesome acoustic guitar playing. It’s far from the original trip-hop sound, but it works for fans of indie music.
4. “Come As You Are”- Yuna. It’s hard covering Nirvana. Especially if you choose to soften it up and make it almost atmospheric like Yuna did in her cover of the grunge classic. Totally different song, but stands well on its own.
5. “Love Is Blindness”- Jack White. I’m convinced that most things Jack White touches turn out great. Though I’m not a big fan of U2, I’m a big fan of White’s cover of this song. It’s featured in the Great Gatsby soundtrack which is full of other great covers as well. Because who doesn’t want to hear Beyonce covering ‘Back to Black’ by Amy Winehouse?
6. “Sweet Dreams”- Emily Browning. For her role in Zach Synder’s Suckerpunch, actress Emily Browning actually sang for three cover songs on the soundtrack (which is mostly all cool cover songs). ‘Sweet Dreams’ is one of my favorites—it’s eerie and haunting, definitely different from the Eurythmics original. It leans a little towards Marilyn Manson’s version.
7. “Happy Together”- Filter. This couldn’t be more different than the original by the Turtles. It starts off slow and turns into this raw rock song that ebbs and flows. I don’t think it’s for everyone, but it’s definitely an attention grabber.
8. “In the Air Tonight”- Kelly Sweet. The Phil Collins version is a total classic, but Kelly Sweet’s has this electronic intensity that makes it pretty cool. A total remake of the original, but still keeps that completely necessary drum solo.
9. “Just Dance”- Gary Go. This cover takes Lady Gaga’s hit and turns it into this mellow piano song. He also adds lyrics to the chorus which makes it a lot more cohesive. The sound builds and builds, definitely one to check out.
10. “The Killing Moon”- Nouvelle Vague. The original song by Echo and the Bunnymen is featured in the movie Donnie Darko, and I actually can’t decide which version is better. Nouvelle Vague’s version is beautiful and light, the song itself actually sold me on her as an artist. She never disappoints.
There are probably thousands of cover songs out there, both good and bad. You can flashback to all the ‘Punk goes Crunk’ albums from the early 2000s on Myspace if you really want to dig deep. It’s the sort of trend that never really goes out of style. Do you have a favorite cover song? Let us know some of your favorites (and least favorites) in the comments.