Monday, December 17, 2007

All the cool kids are doing it.

  • You've likely already seen this elsewhere, but Cassettes Won't Listen has a downloadable all-covers EP whose artwork pays homage to that classic '90s era cut-out bin "favorite," No Alternative.

  • Similarly, Okkervil River recently posted an covers EP, the Golden Opportunities Mixtape, which is available for free download at their official site.
  • Tuesday, December 11, 2007

    The music that I constantly play says nothing to you about your life.

    Most of today's tracks are softer than I generally post because I'm sleepy. Too sleepy, in fact, to write anything about them. Zzzzzzzzz.

  • Benny Quick "California Sun" (Rivieras cover in German)

  • Cats and Jammers "Beautiful Stranger" (Madonna cover)

  • Karen Souza "Creep" (Radiohead cover)

  • Paper Camera "Don't Pass Me By" (Beatles cover)

  • Sarah Harmer "Just a Closer Walk With Thee" (Traditional)

  • Cansei de Ser Sexy (CSS) "Knife" (Grizzly Bear cover)

  • The Puppini Sisters "Panic" (Smiths cover)

  • The Lance Gambit Trio "Parklife" (Blur cover)

  • The Lullaby Ensemble "Wait" (White Lion cover)

  • Grand Mal "Winter In" (Gene Clark cover)
  • Tuesday, November 27, 2007

    No cigarettes. No sleep. No light. No sound.

    I've been listening to the Hollies version of this (which is the first version that was a hit, but not the first that was recorded) pretty regularly lately. I've no idea what's up with that. Although it's become apparent to me that Radiohead's "Creep" might not exist without it.

  • Jorge Gonzalez "Necesito Poder Respirar (The Air That I Breathe)" (comp. Albert Hammond/Mike Hazelwood)

  • Steve Wynn "The Air That I Breathe" (comp. Albert Hammond/Mike Hazelwood)

  • The Mavericks "The Air That I Breathe" (comp. Albert Hammond/Mike Hazelwood)

  • Olivia Newton-John "The Air That I Breathe" (comp. Albert Hammond/Mike Hazelwood)
  • Sunday, November 25, 2007

    Nobody told me it was gonna turn out this way.

    Sorry for the slight delay. Holidays and back pain and whatnot.

  • Greg Lowery Band "Ain't Even Done With the Night" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Blue Bloods "Authority Song" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Hot Water Music "Authority Song" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Operation Cliff Clavin "Authority Song" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Keystone All-Stars "Authority Song" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Vitamin String Quartet "Cherry Bomb" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Uriah Heep "Hot Night in a Cold Town" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Pat Benatar "I Need a Lover" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • The bluegrass Tribute Band "Lonely Ol' Night" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)
    A piece of Lobstar trivia: I was 12 or 13 and was at the Fun Frolic in Bloomington, Indiana, the night they shot this video.

  • Avail "Pink Houses" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Vibrascope "Pinkhausen" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)
    I was planning not to comment on any of these covers, but I added the personal trivia above so I feel I have to say this here: When it's the mid-1990s and you have two close friends who imbibe various substances on a regular basis and have a four track, you have to be prepared for things like this. Um, yeah.

  • Eli Barsi "Small Town" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)

  • Jon Cougar Concentration Camp "Small Town" (John Cougar Mellencamp cover)
  • Wednesday, November 21, 2007

    Gimme strength for Round 5.

    I've traveled many roads to hell over the years, but the one I'll discuss now is the one paved with good intentions. Yeah, posting every day was hard enough when I was a hardcore slacker, but I'm finding it an impossibility now that I'm working a full-time, night-time temp job that's far more physically demanding than the desk-drone jobs I've worked the past 7 or so years. Then again, I did decide to refer to my everyday attempt as NaNoCoMo, and half of the people I know who attempt NaNoWriMo give up by the third week as well. So, in a way I met the goal. I will still try to post a few times a week from now until the end of time. Or something like that. All I know is that within the next 48 hours I'm sharing all the covers I have of John Mellencamp songs that are currently on my hard drive. Be very afraid.

    P.S. Buy shirts from Threadless' Holiday sale.

    Monday, November 19, 2007

    Tonite [sic] I'm crawling out from in it.

    I'm trying to make up for the brief gap this weekend by posting 12 songs. They're all over the map as usual, but all are better than that catastrophic Sugarland cover of Beyonce's "Irreplaceable" on tonight's American Music Awards, IMO.

  • Jason Groth (and friends?) "Gold Hick" (Guided By Voices cover)
  • Jason Groth (and friends?) "King and Caroline" (Guided By Voices cover)
    Jason lives in Indiana, is a friend of my best pal Ryan and is/has been in lots of bands, such as Magnolia Electric Co., The Impossible Shapes, The Coke Dares, etc. He's also apparently a man after my own heart and recently recorded a track-for-track tribute to GBV's Alien Lanes, which is an awesome thing to do. He sent it to Ryan, Ryan sent it to me, and here we all are.

  • Gravioli "The Kids Are Alright" (The Who cover)
    Speaking of my best pal Ryan, this is a quick cover he recorded the other day and sent to me. I didn't ask him whether it was okay to post it here, but I'm a loner, Dottie. A rebel! He's known me 15 years, I think he knows that all covers sent to me risk an appearance here unless I'm warned otherwise.

  • The McRackins "Love Is Alright Tonite" (Rick Springfield cover)
    Here's another song whose title not only utilizes the "word" alright, but also the "word" tonite. The original Springfield track is not only used brilliantly in Wet Hot American Summer but is also the first song on Side A of Working Class Dog, the album I chose to blare earlier today to drown out the sound of my disgustingly young and attractive hipster neighbors arguing—an act of retaliation that resulted in a slightly uncomfortable verbal exchange, which was later resolved. Hooray for indie peace!

  • The Wave Pictures "A Change Is Gonna Come" (Sam Cooke cover)
    Somehow, in a manner unbeknownst to me, a track by The Wave Pictures with a wacky title wound up on my hard drive and in my shuffle play yesterday. I Googled them, found this track on their MySpace page and liked it enough to post here.

  • Mog Stunt Team "Hello There" (Cheap Trick cover)
    Sometimes the songs with simplest lyrics rock the most. I'm not necessarily saying that's the case here. Just sayin'.

  • Hey "Hanging on the Telephone" (Nerves cover)
    I posted a cover of this not too long ago, but this band is Polish and I don't post enough Polish stuff.

  • Deadbolt "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" (comp. Burt Bacharach)
    This comes from That's New Pussycat: A Surf Tribute to Burt Bacharach, although this is more psychobilly than surf. Or maybe just psycho.

  • The Beautiful South "You're the One that I Want" (Olivia Newton-John/John Travolta cover, from Grease)
    Very often, when bands release all-cover albums such as The Beautiful South's Golddiggas, Headnodders & Folk Songs, it winds up seeming to be more about providing a showcase of said band's idols than a means to create interesting new music. I think in the case of this TBS track, they did a little of both.

  • Lawnmower Deth "Up The Junction" (Squeeze cover)
    This is totally my guilty cover pleasure of the week.

  • Dump "Vienna" (Ultravox cover)
    Keeping with the self-recorded theme of the first few tracks (and thanks to the fact that I was in Dave's Records the other day and they were playing Ultravox and it made me so very happy), here is an old favorite of mine.

  • The Mountain Goats "Dirty Old Town" (Ewan MacColl cover)
    This is here because I [heart] the Mountain Goats and couldn't afford to go see them the other day.
  • Friday, November 16, 2007


    Well, I'm not surprised NaNoCoMo has a glitch or two. Neither is anyone reading, I'm guessing. There's some glitch with my chosen FTP and I'm too busy/lazy to figure it out right now (or to download a different program). Hopefully, I'll post some actual tracks tomorrow. Until then, I hope you won't want to kill me for this post. (The last one is not the best, but it's my favorite.)

    It could go on forever, but even I have my limits!

    Wednesday, November 14, 2007

    Tomorrow's too late: Accept me today!

    As random a post as any and written just under the wire!

  • Ni-Hao! "Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio" (Ramones cover)

  • Band "In God We Trust" (Stryper cover)

  • Matsuri "No More Sorry" (My Bloody Valentine cover)
  • Tuesday, November 13, 2007

    I'm the one who's dreaming.

    Stay away from these tracks if you're diabetic, because they are so twee and cute and poppy they will make your teeth hurt. I Like Japanese Hardcore was a short-lived Plan-It-X-related project out of Bloomington, IN, where their sole album (that features only one of the two-person act, actually) was recorded at local indie radio station WFHB. I get in the mood for the ILJH recording from time to time, particularly the song in which they sort of bash another Bloomington band I was never that into. If you like these covers, you can grab the whole recording for free and read a little more about the band here.

  • I Like Japanese Hardcore "In Your Bed" (Cub cover)

  • I Like Japanese Hardcore "Fine Day For Sailing" (Go Sailor cover)
  • Monday, November 12, 2007

    Earth is afire.

    Dear universe: It's awesome that you got me free tickets to the Georgie James/Aqueduct show because it ruled. However, it's not awesome when I lose the footage I shot of Aqueduct performing Warren G's "Regulate" and when both my Internet service is down and the water in my building is shut off practically all day. You're lucky that I have tomorrow's Duran Duran tribute night at Neo to make up for it. Kthnxbye!

  • Powderfinger "The Chauffeur" (Duran Duran cover)

  • Mr. T Experience "Is There Something I Should Know?" (Duran Duran cover)

  • Rhode Island Boys Choir "I Don't Want Your Love" (Duran Duran cover)

  • Rats With Wings "Hungry Like the Wolf" (Duran Duran cover)
  • Sunday, November 11, 2007

    It's the freakin' weekend baby, I'm about to have me some fun.

    Well, someone slept in today in preparation for the Aqueduct show she won free tickets to, so "today's" MP3s will more than likely be posted "tomorrow" (aka whatever time I return from the show). Sorry, kids, but Liza doesn't turn down the free indie rock.

    Saturday, November 10, 2007

    Don't want to be a boy; you want to be a man.

    It's nearly midnight, I'm just back from a somewhat annoying '80s-themed interactive show, my "too pretty for their own good" hipster next-door neighbors are yet again taunting me with their loud "lovemaking," and I'm so dedicated to my NaNoCoMo mission, I'm posting some songs.

    I was contacted via IM today on my favorite P2P network by a charming fellow who once sent me a cover that I meant to post but forgot. (I get a lot of songs sent to me in addition to those I find on my own, so that tends to happens a lot—sorry!) Anyhow, Jamie Cameron (aka The Last Dinosaur and Destroying Something Beautiful, etc.) is a talented singer/songwriter/instrumentalist/indie label creator who likes Threadless shirts and whose covers are all very pretty. I'm posting a couple, but you can grab a few more here. Pretty good for a recovering bedroom rocker, I say.

  • The Last Dinosaur (UK) "Beat It" (Michael Jackson cover)

  • Destroying Something Beautiful (UK) "Someday" (Steve Earle cover)
  • The only road they've ever known.

    Rose Polenzani, Sharon Lewis, Dinty Child, Dave Champagne, Jess Fox, Kimon Kirk, Joel Ninesling, and Ry Cavanaugh

    Friday, November 09, 2007

    I am kinda sorta your best friend.

  • I'd like to start off with a little reminder: If you read Copy, Right? via the LiveJournal feed, please know that I am not notified when people leave comments there. If you want to leave a comment you'll be sure I'll see, please leave it at Copy, Right? proper.

  • Speaking of the massive popularity of Copy, Right? (ha!), it appears mine is one of a slew of MP3 blogs nominated by Hey! Nielsen and's "Best Music Blog" contest. It is my nature to be self-deprecating, so I will say right now that—due to the presence of tons of other, better nominees—I don't expect to come close to winning. Although, if you're one of those types who likes to create lots of new Internet accounts and vote for things, voting begins Monday. If I win one of the prizes I could win some free downloads and you all know what that means: Non-Stop College A Capella Jam 2007!

  • Speaking of non-stop college a capella jams (just kidding), I got an e-mail yesterday from Dent May (and his Magical Ukelele?) alerting me to his MySpace page, the "About Me" section of which features a free downloadable ZIP file of his latest EP that features a cover of one of my favorite songs ever, Prince's "When You Were Mine." Hearing his version drew a memory from the recesses of my brain that I once sang "When You Were Mine" at some queer-positive (I was the token straight member of OUT at the time, heh) event at the Collins Coffeehouse at IU accompanied by my best pal Ryan on guitar. Unfortunately, while I'm sure my version had its own distinct charm, it was not as good as Dent May's by a long shot. I'm sort of in love with the whole EP, particularly "College Town Boy," because, I swear, I totally know that guy! We probably all do. In particular, fans of Jonathan Richman, the Magnetic Fields, Don Lennon and the like should download it ASAP.

  • Speaking of free downloadable ZIP files, those clamoring for video-game-style covers of all sorts of bands from the Beatles to the Gin Blossoms to Fall Out Boy to Saosin to a whole slew of acts with which I'm not particularly familiar, The Hunt for Yoshi can more than fulfill your needs. There has to be a person or two reading who "clamors" for such things, right?

  • Speaking of clamoring for things, it won't come as a surprise to anyone to know that I lust for strange foreign cover songs. Therefore, I feel it imperative that I wish a Happy First Birthday to Eurocovers!

  • Speaking of awesome cover blogs, I'm about to post today's MP3s. Just a heads-up that, due to my staggeringly awesome post-every-day-this-month thing, I'll probably start unlinking tracks that are more than a week old as I go. So if you see something you want to grab, don't put it off too long!

  • Hello Saferide "Teen Line" (The Shivvers cover)
    My favorite jangly Swedish tweemo singer/songwriter meets my favorite overlooked power pop hit and I giddily explode. Heaven!

  • The Methadones feat. Annie Soviette "Goodbye to You" (Scandal cover)
    I hope one day to see this Chicago punk/power-pop band live—although I'm not quite into the scene enough to go to Riot Fest next week to do so—but until then, I revel in their all-covers album 21st Century Power Pop Riot, for quite obvious reasons.

  • Bjorn Again "Stop! (More)" (Erasure cover)
    While power pop has been ruling my life lately, I have to admit I found myself in a very Erasure mood today. Interpret that however you wish—unless you wish to do so in the style of Abba, which has obviously already been done.

  • Piano Tribute Players "Teenagers" (My Chemical Romance cover)
    When I win the lottery and buy a player piano, I will program in all of my screamo favorites.

  • Inkubus Sukkubus "Paint It Black" (Rolling Stones cover)
    I feel a dearth of goth here lately and thus resolve it.

  • Run Run Run "Fade Into You (Z-Trip Remix)" (Mazzy Star cover)
    I'm all entried out now. Just listen to it.
  • Tuesday, November 06, 2007

    Tonight's the night.

  • Class "Strobe Light" (B-52's cover)

  • Bluetip "52 Girls" (B-52's cover)

  • Aviador Dro "Planet Claire" (Spanish B-52's cover)
  • Monday, November 05, 2007

    ...and I know the night is fading, and I know that time's gonna fly...

    I feel like on any given day I'd be just as likely to dislike it, but right now I'm sort of in love with Portland (OR) band Sexton Blake's all-covers album, Plays the Hits! Sounds sort of like the all-covers album I've always imagined me (along with my more musically talented friends) making one day.

  • Sexton Blake "I Need Love" (LL Cool J cover)

  • Sexton Blake "Making Love Out of Nothing at All" (Air Supply cover)
  • Sunday, November 04, 2007

    All this machinery making modern music.

    Technically, I started writing this on the 4th but—thanks to an interruption from my ISP and the continuation of the days-long Freaks and Geeks marathon my friend and I are holding3I'm not posting until the 5th. Speaking of Freaks and Geeks, covers of songs that were featured on F&G at some point is the theme of this post. Apologies in advance for the bulk of them.

  • Rosetta Stone "The Spirit of Radio" (Rush cover)

  • Rev. Milton Brunson & The Thompson Community Choir "Jesus Is Just Alright With Me" (Byrds cover/comp. Reynolds)

  • Woodrow Jackson Orchestra ft. Money Mark "Love's Theme" (Love Unlimited Orchestra cover)

  • Lisa Mychols "Look Sharp!" (Joe Jackson cover)

  • The Binghamton Crosbys "Renegade" (Styx cover)

  • Monica Green "25 or 6 to 4" (Chicago cover)

  • Botox "Fashion" (David Bowie cover)

  • Arvid Tuba "Do You Love Me?" (Kiss cover)
  • Saturday, November 03, 2007

    An image of you and of me and we're laughing and loving it all.

    I'm very hungover, but let that not keep me from achieving my goal of posting a few songs a day this month.

  • General Store "Hold Me Now" (Thompson Twins cover)

  • Microsillon feat. Eugénie Allquezar "This Is Not America" (David Bowie cover)
  • Friday, November 02, 2007

    Home is where I want to be, but I guess I'm already there.

  • Gal and Lad "Going to Maine" (Mountain Goats cover)
    A random Google search while cover hunting led me to the MySpace page of the delightful Gal and Lad, where you can download this track along with a few of their popdorable originals.

  • Farrah "It's Different for Girls" (Joe Jackson cover)
    The dreamy lead singer for Farrah, a UK power pop band, sounds about 15 years old. And I'm okay with that.

  • Bettye LaVette "I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got" (Sinead O'Connor cover)
    My friend Ray introduced me to this somewhat odd soul cover, which is featured on LaVette's album of somewhat odd soul covers, I've Got My Own Hell to Raise—which is itself named after a lyric from a Fiona Apple song likewise on the album.

  • Mysteries of Life "This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)" (Talking Heads cover)
    Ah, Bloomington's own. (Indiana, of course.) Many talented and cute gals and guys have weaved in and out of this band and I love them all. god only knows how many times I've seen them live. Probably enough to never have to see them again. But that doesn't mean that I don't want to.

  • Les Calamités "When You Find Out" (Nerves cover)
    I kind of always presumed that the Nerves original was actually a cover of some '60s garage/psych nugget, but no: It merely showcased a genre from which they drew inspiration. Les Calamités take it a step further by making it sound like crunchy old French DIY brilliance. If this recording existed decades ago and someone told me Les Calamités were the original performers, I'd have no reason to doubt that.

  • Zongamin "Third Uncle" (Brian Eno cover)
    Experimental indienewwavetechnojazzfunk acts like Zongamin are usually a bit too weirdly all-over-the-map for me to pay more than 10 seconds worth of attention to them, but I must admit this cover makes me very happy.
  • Thursday, November 01, 2007

    All things grow.

    NaNoCoMo inaugural post, yo!

  • Dessous Chics "Supersonic" (Oasis cover)
    Vivent les fils electros!

  • Microfilm "Chicago" (Sufjan Stevens cover)
    Chicago's Microfilm has been churning out lots of electro goodness, most of which can easily be purchased over at iTunes and eMusic. So if it's your thing, you should definitely buy some of their stuff.
  • Wednesday, October 31, 2007

    It's not a bad thing. It's not a good thing.

    Hey, kids, I'm here to announce my participation in NaNoCoMo. Yes, considering I just made that up, that does mean I'm the sole participant. Basically, my plan is to post at least two covers a day every day in November. And while NaNoCoMo won't officially begin until tomorrow, today I will point those clamoring for downloadable DIY Guided By Voices tribute albums created by GBV fans from the Postal Blowfish mailing list to the Monumental Box.

    Thursday, October 25, 2007

    We're all in the mood for a melody.

    Hey, New Yorkers! If you're looking for something different to do tomorrow on the LES, why not head out to a free all-covers show performed by rock pianist (and environmentalist!) Danny Ross? I mean, seriously, you know it's been ages since your last all-covers piano-rock show. Am I right? If it were happening here, I know I'd go.

    Who: Danny Ross
    What: Covers Show
    When: Friday October 26th, 8PM, FREE!, Ages 21+
    Where: Rockwood Music Hall, 196 Allen St just south of Houston in Manhattan's Lower East Side

    Friday, October 12, 2007

    I like kites!

    If you were curious about the Yo Gabba Gabba clip of the Parallelograms covering Free Design's "Kites Are Fun" I mentioned an entry or two ago, you can now see it here.

    In other news, yes, I will post a new entry or two soon. I've been busy with job interviews and weather-shift-related colds and whatnot.

    Thursday, September 20, 2007

    They could knock me off my feet until I'm flat on the floor.

    A little over a year ago I posted a great country cover of Mariah Carey's "My All" by Chicago band Devin & The Straights and said that I couldn't wait to see them live. Well, I did wait quite a long time. I had just missed their set the night I saw Textbook Committee and Farewell Captain at the Beat Kitchen, so my next option was to head to Chicago's big gay street festival, Northalsted Market Days, in August to see them. Besides, their adorable former band member and longtime Copy, Right? reader and subsequent Internet friend Landon joined them on vocals and harmonica, so I felt particularly driven toward my goal. They did not disappoint. Charming, funny, gay, straight, talented and prone to performing covers? If that's not up my alley, I'm not sure what is. Luckily, I got some video. Hooray for modern technology and digital cameras with halfway decent video recording capabilities!

    D&TS covering "Jackson" (comp. Lieber/Wheeler):

    D&TS covering Cher's "Just Like Jesse James":

    Wednesday, September 19, 2007

    What up, Brobee?

    You know how I said a couple of posts back that I didn't know much about the Aquabats aside from their wackiness? Well, since then, I've become mildly obsessed with Nick Jr.'s new kids show Yo Gabba Gabba, which was created by one of the Aquabats. Weird how that sort of information serendipity happens, innit? Those of you unfamiliar with Yo Gabba Gabba, it's basically a show for preschoolers that features some pretty inventive characters and cool, often deliciously retro animation and awesome indie pop. (Here's an article about it.) Today's episode, for instance, included a performance by the adorable Salteens (who've been featured here in the past) and a freaking brilliant animated piece by Nick Cross set to a dreamy cover of Free Design's "Kites Are Fun" by the Parallelograms. And Mark Mothersbaugh often shows up to draw things like potato bugs on skateboards.

    Sadly, I currently have no cover-related Yo Gabba Gabba music or video to offer you— though there is a slew of non-cover YGG stuff to be found on YouTube, including the Aggrolites singing about bananas and Elijah Wood doing the slightly creepy "Puppetmaster" dancey dance—but I felt like confessing that I record YGG every day now to watch with my imaginary hipster toddler.

    Monday, September 17, 2007

    I could go on forever, but I won't.

    The Silverfish covers Jellyfish's "Bedspring Kiss":

    McFly, aka whiny emo power-pop boy band band with annoying name, covers Jellyfish's "Baby's Coming Back":

    JTG Implosion awesomely covers ELO's "Turn To Stone" at International Pop Overthrow Atlanta 2007

    The Smokin' Baloneys (?) cover "Starry Eyes" by The Records—a great, energetic live cover with poor video/sound quality.

    Debbie looking hotter than ever in the video for the song most people don't realize is a cover (see previous entry):

    Saturday, September 15, 2007

    Your voice across the line gives me a strange sensation.

    I had a dream last night that if I went record shopping today I'd find something by old-school Bloomington arty popsters Arson Garden on vinyl. My dreams never come true. That's okay, though, because they've covered a power pop classic and that suits my mood. (Thanks, as always, to Musical Family Tree for their extensive collection of Indiana-related bands old and new.)

  • Arson Garden "Hanging on the Telephone" (Nerves cover)
    This is from a show they performed at Jake's in 1991. I wasn't there because I wasn't quite old enough to go to Jake's in 1991. I used to be young!
  • Friday, September 14, 2007

    Labour of lust.

    What a post delay, huh? I'm very much the type of person whose interests come in waves and the blog wave just didn't hit me for a while there. Longtime readers are accustomed to this pattern, so I won't necessarily apologize, but I felt a warning was necessary for newer readers. Blah, blah, blah, but now the weather smacks of fall (and fall's my favorite) and the wave crashed into me today and here I am.

    Another wave that's pummeled me (aside from a momentary desire to use annoying Internet abbreviations) the past week is the delightfully crushing force of power pop both old and new—hence the theme of today's post and, quite possibly, the next few posts to come. Let's all live in fear (and glee!) of a probable future of an all-"Without You" post, shall we? And an onslaught of YouTube-found videos of varying quality. (See below.)

    The covers you'll find will either be A) power pop acts covering non-powerpoppers B) non-powerpoppers covering power pop acts or, in many cases, C) power pop acts covering other power pop acts. You know how I roll.

  • The Diodes "Red Rubber Ball" (Cyrkle cover, comp. Paul Simon)
    "Red Rubber Ball" is near the top of my very long list of favorite songs of all time. You never suspected I was an optimist, did you?

  • Candy "She Loves You" (Beatles cover)
    Ah. LA. Power pop and big glam-rock hair. It sometimes makes me wish I was born on the West Coast.

  • The Lambrettas "Somebody to Love" (Jefferson Airplane cover)
    Leaning a bit more into new wave than power pop, IMHO, but they have their moments.

  • The Cokes "Cheri" (20/20 cover, comp. Paul Collins)
    Dear Japanese power pop act: Please be the band in my dream prom that enters through the fog on a team of black unicorns with silver reins and glittery rainbow-striped horns. KTHNXBYE!

  • Velvet Crush "Remember the Lightning" (20/20 cover)
    I'm getting tired of writing and can't think of anything to say about Velvet Crush or 20/20 except that I like the former and I love the latter. But the cover art for VC's Teenage Symphonies to God is on a list of my favorites. I want to date that cartoon boy. If he's straight.

  • The Rubinoos "Little Willy" (Sweet cover)
    I never write these silly snippets in the order the tracks are listed and it's almost 5 a.m. and I can't sleep so I've nothing to say here except that it's a good thing I'm not wealthy because, if I were, my house would be full of insane "I can't believe this exists" crap like this. As my current financial situation stands, it's not in the cards for me. But, hey, there are still about 102 shopping days until Christmas, you know...

  • Lush "I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend" (Rubinoos cover)
    I would let the Lush gals be my girlfriends. I miss them.

    Note to Avril Lavigne: Hey! (Hey!) You! (You!) This sounds exactly like that song you and your co-songsmith "wrote"! Oh, that trend-setting Kelly Osbourne/Linda Perry collabo!

  • Dar Williams "All Men are Liars" (Nick Lowe cover)
    Nick Lowe's acerbic lyrics? Check. Dar Williams's similarly sardonic glint and irresistible charm? Check. Rick Astley getting pwned? Check. What more could you need? Srsly.

  • The 27 Various "Great Big World" (Plimsouls cover)
    Kicking off this creamy Plimsouls-related center is a track I only remembered existed after I started thinking about The 27 Various for another reason. Earlier today I went to the local used record shop and spotted their album Approximately for $4.99 and I didn't buy it because I thought I already had it on vinyl. On the walk home I thought to myself, "Wait... I have that one, right?" When I returned, I checked my records and, duh, it's the only vinyl LP of theirs I don't have (not to mention one I realize I didn't even think was on vinyl at all)! Well, I know where I'm headed tomorrow afternoon.

    Anyhow, I've mentioned before that I love The 27 Various, a band most people have never heard of, and this cover is simple but pleases me immensely. It seems to come from a radio show performance replete with witty pre-song banter, which makes the early 90s fangirl in me even more giddy about its existence.

  • The Aquabats "Zero Hour" (Plimsouls cover)
    I don't know much about the Aquabats except they're a ska band in the jam-packed "my, aren't we wacky?!?" subset of the genre. Therefore I will share a conversation with myself that took place in my head earlier.

    Liza: I wonder where this resurgence in my love for power pop began.
    Liza: It was probably Labor Day weekend when Encore was showing all of those crappy-but-awesome '80s movies.
    Liza: Yeah, I think the soundtrack music seeped into my head and made me long to be a Los Angelean teen trying desperately to party and get laid.
    Liza: Ah, to be in a scene with Eric Stoltz or Andrew McCarthy with the Plimsouls or the Nerves playing in the background!
    Liza: Right? That would rule, but you know what?
    Liza: What?
    Liza: You're too old for that now. I mean, you're about the same age now as the Jacqueline Bisset character is supposed to be in Class.
    Liza: Holy crap!
    Liza: Not exactly related, but isn't it weird that REM had a song on the Bachelor Party soundtrack?
    Liza: Yeah, that is weird. But that REM song doesn't even really sound like REM in retrospect. It's actually perfect for the Bachelor Party soundtrack.
    Liza: Hmm. I just thought of something: Maybe the obsession with power pop happened because it seems as if Peter Case is suddenly everywhere in magazines.
    Liza: Yeah, isn't he though?
    Liza: Well, maybe not everywhere. Maybe only in the past few issues Paste.
    Liza: Heh. Yeah. That doesn't exactly constitute everywhere, but Paste certainly had a hand in it.
    Liza: Word.


  • Ingram Hill "A Million Miles Away" (Plimsouls cover)
    Ingram Hill sounds like the name of the name of the fictional publishing company where the chubby, sassy heroine of the chick lit book I'll never write works. The band Ingram Hill sounds like a roots rock/country/adult contemporary blend with just a slight aftertaste of emo. (Speaking of blends and aftertastes, I could totally imagine them as one of many Starbucks featured performers.) I'm afraid Ingram Hill—which is the name of the band, not the name of a person in the band—might not be enough of either to fit in anywhere. But good luck to them in their market (which is unsurprisingly admittedly not my thing) as I was very surprised to enjoy this cover far more than I thought I would.

  • The Plimsouls "Time Won't Let Me" (Outsiders cover)
    Oh, wait. This is the last snippet I have to write. Damn, just when I was about to finally go to sleep. Like many gals and guys of my generation, I was introduced to the music of the Plimsouls through the new wave/power poptacular movie, "Valley Girl. Hooray for that.

    Unrelated to music but related to my long-running obsession with Valley Girl, last month I could have seen this remake of "Valley Girl," at the Chicago Underground Flim Festival but I didn't because I just learned today that it existed. I'm so fired. Those interested can see the a snippet of it around the 23-minute mark here. If you have an hour to kill, you can also view snippets of the artist's Velvet Underground and Runaways mini, um, biopics and hear her talk about her process and other stuff interesting to art students. She's doing the kind of stuff I always talk about doing but never do because I thought no one but my friends and I would find it worthwhile or amusing. Apparently I overestimated the taste of the powers that be in the art world. So, yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhh. You'll either find the videos annoying or hilarious or both. You've been warned. (Note to self and anyone willing to take on the endeavor: 1. Try to find out the bands covering the soundtrack songs and acquire them somehow AND 2. Get to work on that all-sock-puppet version of Solarbabies.)

  • The Records "Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadow?" (Rolling Stones cover)
    The British Big Star. (I'm not coining that, FYI. It's how people have described them and my use does not imply my endorsement as such.)

  • Material Issue "I'd Wait a Million Years" (Grass Roots cover)
    It kills me that I somehow never managed to see Material Issue live. Hopefully Jim will serenade me when I get to Blogger heaven.

  • She Blonde Swede "Crazy" (Material Issue cover)
    I know nothing about She Blonde Swede except you can download a slew of live covers they've done at various gigs over at the Internet Archive and that they seem to have good taste. Have I mentioned lately how much the Internet rulz?

  • Bowling for Soup "Sick of Myself" (Matthew Sweet cover)
    I have to admit the few anachronisms in the song and video for their cheesy hit "1985" still annoy me because I'm a geek, but it was a pleasant surprise to find they're MS fans.

    It's kind to be cruel*, so I now subject you to this:

    *Preemptive strikes: 1. Please no e-mails correcting this wording. I did it on purpose. 2. I know this is not a list of every cover ever of or by every power pop band in history. I can only do so much at a time.

  • Saturday, September 08, 2007

    Music in a musical? How can they go wrong?

    There's a hiccup in my web hosting right now that should be fixed shortly and will result in a real post soon. Really.

    Until then, allow me to bring out my inner musical theatre dork. (You know I'm a dork, because I spell it with an "r-e" and not an "e-r.") Now, with the exception of my role as Mother Jaguar teaching her son how to hunt tortoises and hedgehogs in a Kipling-based Bloomington, IN, community theatre children's musical, I don't have any experience in the genre. Although that's probably more than a lot of people have, I suppose, but I digress.

    That said, nearly all the women I know who are my age went through a phase in which they wished they were in Grease or Annie or whatever regardless of their level of talent. It's right up there with the "princess wedding" dream we're fed, although much cooler, IMO. This applies for most of the men into musical theatre too, I think. (Note: It's only "cooler" to those who didn't actually want the "princess" wedding" once they were grown up, of course.) It is also my theory that many of the best of those women secretly wished they were gay men. Or maybe that was just me, but enough of my geeky and sordid psychological issues.

    Aaaaaanyhow, that long overly self-conscious introduction background paragraph exists so I can display the following video of Baldwin-Wallace musical theatre grads rehearsing their version of the opening song from the overly self-conscious (but in a good way) off-Broadway musical [title of show]. My Internet friend Duncan from New York (who's sung lots of covers at the Ukulele Cabaret over the years) turned me on to [tos], a funny musical about writing a funny musical, and my inner musical theatre dork is hooked. I'm reading their blog, watching informational snippets, and loving the "toscast" path-to-Broadway videos: 1, 2, 3. If it sounds like your type of inner musical dork kind of thing, then click all these links, baby. If not, keep your snarky comments to yourself!

    Monday, August 27, 2007

    It's a good time for Superman to lift the sun into the sky.

    First: Threadless is having its $10 Back to School Sale, which ends Sept. 3.

    Second, from my best pal Ryan:

    I picked up Jim Derogatis' Flaming Lips bio at the bookstore on a whim yesterday. Reading it has prompted me to look for old Lips footage on you tube. Before I made any progress with that I ran across this nice video of a girl playing "Waiting for a Superman". I really like it.

    Friday, August 24, 2007

    Dear boy, I'm gonna make you a man.

    In celebration of the fact that the storm-related blockwide (or more) brownout affecting my neighborhood for the past 24 hours hasn't affected my Internet access, here is a post! I figure posting for the first time in weeks is a good way to pass the time while I wait for everything in my refrigerator to melt and spoil.

  • The Raincoats "Lola" (Kinks cover)
    For a while there, everyone seemed to want to know my opinion of the NY Post's "Best 100 Cover Songs of All Time" thing. Um, yeah. Let's just say that I scan all "Best Cover" lists for the Raincoats' version of "Lola." If I'm unable to locate it, I don't really pay much attention to the rest of what's there. I mean, Orgy's version of "Blue Monday" made the list? Are you kidding me?

  • Shampoo "House of Love" (East 17 cover)
    Hell, even this is better than most of the covers on that list!

  • The Belles "Melvin (Gloria)" (Them cover)

  • Nico "The End" (Doors cover)

  • Luminous Orange "Sunday Morning" (Velvet Undeground cover)

  • Rachel Z "Tonight, Tonight" (Smashing Pumpkins cover)

  • Jason Falkner "This Will Be Our Year" (Zombies cover)

  • Angels Of Epistemology "Fiction Romance" (Buzzcocks cover)

  • Silent League "Can't Get It Out OF My Head" (ELO cover)

  • Sarah Blasko "Don't Dream It's Over" (Crowded House cover)

  • The Walls "Ain't Nobody" (Chaka Khan cover)

  • Alice Wonders "Here Comes Your Man" (Pixies cover)
  • Monday, August 13, 2007

    He was a stranger in our land.

    I've been slacking on my blog reading for the past month or two, so I was shocked to learn a few days ago of Lee Hazlewood's death on August 4. I know that there have been a slew of celebrity deaths in the past week or two, but it's unfathomable that I didn't read or hear mention of Hazlewood's passing via ANY mainstream media outlet until I specifically hunted them out after reading of his death via bloggers. A shame. I loved him. RIP, Lee.

  • Lee Hazlewood "It Was a Very Good Year" (Frank Sinatra cover, comp. Ervin Drake)
    Thank you, Lee, for many very good years of music. I, for one, will sorely miss you and your talent.

  • Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood "Jackson" (comp. Lieber/Wheeler)
    I get that the Johnny Cash/June Carter version won a Grammy, but I still don't see why theirs is the most popular version of this song. (Although Cash's duet with Miss Piggy is one of my favorites.) Honestly, I think Johnny and June's version lacks the sense of deadpan snarky resignation that Nancy and Lee's has. Theirs is coyer. Grittier. Angrier. Sexier. And it's one of my favorite songs of all time.

  • OP8 "Sand" (Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood cover, comp. Lee Hazlewood)
    OP8 was a project featuring Lisa Germano, Howe Gelb (Giant Sand) and Joey Burns and John Convertino (Giant Sand/Calexico). Their sole album Slush—which features a cover of Neil Young's "Round and Round" as well as a slew of lush originals—is one of my favorite albums of the 1990s.

  • Calexico feat. Valerie Leulliot "Sundown, Sundown" (Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood cover, comp. Lee Hazlewood)
    Speaking of Calexico, here's another of their Hazlewood covers. This and the following track come from Total Lee! A Tribute to Lee Hazlewood album.

  • Lambchop "I'm Glad I Never..." (Lee Hazlewood cover)
    I'm not the hugest fan of alt-country or Americana, but when it's done well I'm all for it. I discovered Lambchop, a Nashville band, via the handful of covers they've done, but I'm now a fan of their originals as well. It makes me sad that this track is so short.

  • Caroline Williams and Spectre "These Boots Are Made For Walkin'" (Nancy Sinatra cover, comp. Lee Hazlewood)
    I have so many covers of this that I just put them on shuffle and picked the first one that hit that I hadn't already posted in the past. And here it is!

  • Steve Wynn Quintet "Summer Wine" (Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood cover, comp. Lee Hazlewood)
    Steve Wynn's post-Dream Syndicate catalog is so immense that I've weaved in and out of it for years never deciding whether I was into it or not. I do know, however, that I really like the stuff the quintet has put out.
  • Friday, August 03, 2007

    Have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find.

    I totally meant to mention this the other day when its first airing on occurred, but luckily the podcast era ensures later listenings: The Waiting Room (Hope Eternal & Drunk Country) presents Drunk Covers III.

    Legs are required for jumping, dancing.

    OMG, I hate the new Blogger deal where you have to be signed in on your linked Gmail account and whatnot. I didn't realize how much I hated it until, in the middle of writing this post, I logged into a different Gmail account but kept updating the blog only to have Blogger NOT SAVE any of my updates as I made them. So, just know that I initially spent a good deal of time writing little accompanying snippets to each of the following tracks but only a few were written before the e-mail gaffe and now I'm too annoyed to rewrite the others—including the one in which I confess to having sung "Ultimate" at karaoke.


  • Lil' Dave Merriman "I Palindrome I" (They Might Be Giants cover)
    Dave is a good friend of my pal Jessica and acquaintance of mine because he fronts both the Arrivals and the local GBV tribute band, Textbook Committee. I used to be quite the TMBG fan, although I haven't advertised it so much in recent years.

  • Jay Buchanan "Lemon" (U2 cover)
    When my friend Ryan (who is/was a pretty big U2 fan back in the day, depending on the era) visited a few weeks ago, I believe we were making fun of "Lemon." Or maybe I was making fun of it and he and my other friend Brent chimed in. Regardless, it reminded me that I didn't hate this '60s-esque blue-eyed soul/R&B cover of it.

  • Palomar "I'll Come Running" (Brian Eno cover)

  • Fabienne Louves "She Works Hard for the Money" (Donna Summer cover in Swiss German)
    The Swiss are allowed to have pop stars too, I suppose.

  • Jared Louche and the Aliens "Search and Destroy" (Iggy and the Stooges cover)

  • Takeshi Terauchi & The Bunnys "One Fine Day (aria from Madame Butterfly)" (comp. Puccini)
    I didn't realize how much I needed Japanese Ventures-style surf-rock covers of famous classical pieces until now.

  • Skye Sweetnam "Part of Your World" (from The Little Mermaid, comp. Menken/Ashman)

  • Nerina Pallot "Love Will Tear Us Apart" (Joy Division cover)

  • Animal Jazz "Frozen" (Madonna cover)

  • Karen Jo Fields "Famous Blue Raincoat" (Leonard Cohen cover)

  • Spoon "Decora" (Yo La Tengo cover)

  • Astrud "With Whom to Dance" (Magnetic Fields cover)
  • Tuesday, July 31, 2007

    It's what you do to me.

    I vow to try to have new songs for you tomorrow. Until then, please enjoy this animatronic bear "covering" the new emo smash ballad (that I hate, particularly thanks to the crappy "poetic" backward sentence structure of "even more in love with me you'd fall"), "Hey There Delilah" by the Plain White T's:

    Somehow the song improves when bear-sung.

    Sunday, July 08, 2007

    Extra thick, extra long, the way we were wasted.

    I was MIA there for a while, huh? I guess my plan to accept all affordable social invitations in the face of perhaps being forced to leave Chicago due to lack of viable employment is in full effect. So, yeah, in the midst of Pride weekend, "celebrating" my birthday, trying to get/preparing to go to interviews and having friends cool enough to buy tons and tons of drinks, I almost forgot about the blog. Sorry, kids.

    One of the cool things I did recently (as recently as last night, even), was attend the aforementioned cover-fest at the Beat Kitchen. And while the awesome GBV tributalicious Textbook Committee delivered as usual, I was also extremely pleasantly surprised by the musical prowess of a band I'd never seen before: Farewell Captain. Seriously, their all-cover set was so awesome that I remarked to my friend Jessica (who I have to thank profusely because I was initially waffling on whether to go out into the sweltering night with very little pocket money and she offered to be my sugar daddy and encouraged me to go) that if they were a real indie cover band that played every week, I would go see them every time. (Of course, even if they don't play covers, I will check out their non-cover sets should the opportunity arise.)

    Among many other favorite moments, their rendition of Teenage Fanclub's "The Concept" was particularly phenomenal. Sadly, I missed the first half the song because we came late, but whatever. What I saw the rest of their set ruled as well. Such as this cover of "Web in Front" by the Archers of Loaf that features a few extra vocals from my new friend John Sellers, author of Perfect From Now On: How Indie Rock Saved My Life, which you should totally buy:

    A good drunken time indeed!

    I'll be busy this week as well with job interviews, a visiting friend, Sonic Youth at Pitchfork and karaoke, but I'll try to post a few tracks in the next day or two.

    Thursday, June 28, 2007

    When the sun shines we'll shine together.

    I got one of the most shocking and unexpected birthday gifts today in my e-mail: a message from a label rep who actually sent me a link to a cover song! Therefore, I felt only right in pointing you all in the direction of Scott Simons (ex-The Argument, whose cover of the Cars' "Hello Again" was pretty good and was posted here a few years back) and his version of Rihanna's spring/summer jam, "Umbrella." You can download it here or over at his MySpace page. Man, these dreamy solo male indie singer/songwriters are practically tripping over themselves to turn crunk and/or R&B hits into sensitive ballads lately, aren't they? Whatever. I'm down.

    Wednesday, June 27, 2007

    Within the reach of my hands.

    Yesterday I had the somewhat lame idea to do a two-for-Tuesday type of thing today and, in the middle of figuring out what songs to use, I realized that it was already Tuesday and I wouldn't actually be posting until Wednesday. The best-laid plans, eh? Here were a few that were on my "maybe" list.

  • Lampshade "Good Day Sunshine" (Beatles cover)
    I didn't think I'd ever see the day when a Danish/Swedish twee cover of anything might be too sickly sweet for even me. Seriously, this is by far not the worst cover I've heard of this, nor is it all that bad if twee Scandinavian covers are your bag, but it makes my teeth hurt.
  • Roy Redmond "Good Day Sunshine" (Beatles cover)
    Man, talk about channeling Otis for an awesomely soulful cover. I can't find out too much about this Roy Redmond character, but I'm guessing one Otis Redding was enough for everybody.

  • Kunamaka "Hunting High and Low" (A-ha cover)
    In an alternate reality, Mike Patton is French and this is one of his many projects.
  • Sissel Vera Pettersen and Nikolaj Hess "Hunting High and Low" (A-ha cover)
    I can't say that ethereal vocal/piano jazz is necessarily my thing, but I am pleasantly surprised by By This River, the collaboration cover album from Danish piano/composer Nikolaj Hess and Norwegian vocalist/saxophonist/composer Sissel Vera Pettersen. Eno? A-ha? Blur? Depeche Mode? I'd rather hear those acts covered by jazz and/or classical musicians with technical skill than by a punk band full of 18-year-olds who can barely play.

  • EverEve "Fade to Grey" (Visage cover)
    Aside from a Nouvelle Vague here and a Konki Duet there, most covers of "Fade to Grey" are synthy, dancey tracks that sound like little more than Hi-NRG remixes of the original. This, at least, is a gothy, metally, synthy version replete with an introductory quote from Babylon 5.
  • The Gregorian Masters of Chant "Fade to Grey" (Visage cover)
    Remember when chant tributes were more poplar than bluegrass tributes? Those were the days, my friends.

  • Chrome "Here Come the Warm Jets" (Brian Eno cover)
    Ah, Chrome. The band so many people have never heard of who influenced so many of the same people's favorite bands. Isn't that always the way? I'm not sure which later incarnation of Chrome this is. Is it just Damon Edge? Is it just Helios Creed? I don't know, but it's still 100 times better than most of the stuff you find on electronic tribute albums.
  • Arturo Stalteri "Here Come the Warm Jets" (Brian Eno cover)
    Another jazz/classical instrumental piano arrangement perfect for my imaginary coffee shop.

  • Union 13 "Roots Radicals" (Spanish-language Rancid cover)
    I'm currently experiencing a bit of guilty pleasure in the form of the Tim Armstrong/Skye Sweetnam ska/pop "Into Action." Why guilty? I don't know exactly. Despite liking many ska, ska/punk, ska/pop songs, I never felt comfortable aligning myself with it. I never felt punk or mod or cool or lame or whatever enough. I didn't have enough tattoos or a poor enough work ethic or something to fit in with the die-hard fans. My hesitance to commit today is probably just lingers from the '90s when I cared far more about what other people thought of me than I do now. Aaaanyhow, Tim Armstrong's new "guilty" pleasure reminded me that I once considered a few Rancid songs to be my "guilty" pleasures. This Spanish-language version by Los Angeles's Union 13 makes me happy, although I suspect that if it were in English I wouldn't like it as much.
  • The Covert Agency "Roots Radicals" (Rancid cover)
    See? These guys don't sound guilty about it in the least.

    Also, in honor of my good friend Eric's birthday today—which is always a pleasant stepping stone into my own birthday tomorrow—here's some video of a live cover of Clutch's "Big News" as performed by Dozer and featuring Troy and Bill from Mastodon also—aka people from bands I might appreciate a little more if I were a big angry man. But, hey, Dozer's from Sweden, so I can't be completely disinterested in them.

  • Friday, June 22, 2007

    You miss too much these days if you stop and think.

    Judge me harshly if you must, but I've never been much of a U2 fan. Therefore—although I have many—covers of U2 songs tend not to excite me very much. All of that said, I'm kind of in love with SongFight regular Jeff Fal's Add Musical Program podcast (which is often chock-full of covers) and his free downloadable tribute, Add Covers Achtung Baby. And if you like what you hear, you can download a slew of his originals as well directly from the ADD Home Page. I've been meaning to bring all of this up for a while, so why not now?

    Picture my amazement.

    There are a slew of Guided by Voices tribute acts out there, and most of them have MySpace pages, but for some odd reason I just found about the Girl Guides, who describe themselves as a "girls only!!" GBV covers project. I'm suspicious that that isn't true since there are male vocals on the cover of "Motor Away," but whatever. The stuff there is still delicious. Sadly, my favorite cover of the three on their MySpace page, "Always Crush Me," is the only one that's unavailable for download, but you should head over there to hear it anyway and to download the other tracks. Edit: "Always Crush Me" is now downloadable there thanks to Sarah of Girl Guides. We all win!

    Thursday, June 21, 2007

    Perfect from now on.

    For various reasons, I'd been thinking pretty seriously the past 24 hours about deleting this blog entirely or going on a hiatus. But then I thought how messed-up it would be for me to abandon one of the few things in my life that consistently brings both me and thousands of others—according to reviews, stats, comments and e-mail inbox—joy. Screw that. If any of you in my "real life" reading have nothing better to do with your lives that you spend part of it cataloging the things I say and do that piss you off so you can later attempt to lord it over me, that's your glitch, not mine. In the immortal words of Popeye, I am what I am. Take it or leave it.

    Please, faithful readers, no need to leave supportive (or otherwise) comments on this topic. I don't want to waste any more time thinking about or discussing it. I'm not going anywhere for now. I know most of you reading like what I do here and think I'm cool. And I like what I do here and think I'm cool. That's all that matters here.

    Now, let's get on with the show, shall we?

  • Speaking of shows, all of you Chicago indie rockers may be interested to know that my new e-acquaintance and fellow Guided By Voices fanatic, author John Sellers, is going to be in town soon for a few events. He's promoting his book Perfect From Now On: How Indie Rock Saved My Life, which I'm very much looking forward to reading. He'll be reading, signing, meeting and greeting at the Book Cellar at 7PM on Monday, July 2. Rumor has it there's wine involved, which is always exciting. If you can't make that event or you need a little more rock with your lit and liquor, he'll also be reading at the Beat Kitchen at 10:30PM on Saturday, July 7, followed/accompanied by Dayton's Billy Catfish and local faves Farewell Captain (who, rumor has it, are planning to perform an all-cover set of indie standards) and headlining hooligans extraordinaire, the premier Chicago-area (and beyond?) Guided By Voices tribute band, Textbook Committee. Should be a good time, provided you don't get so GBV-style drunk you don't remember where you were.

    And speaking of covers of indie staples...

  • Tom 7 "14 Cheerleader Coldfront" (Guided By Voices cover)
    My favorite track from Tom 7's downloadable tribute to GBV.

  • Nickel Creek "Spit on a Stranger" (Pavement cover)
    This made the rounds on the MP3 blog circuit about a year ago, and I say rightfully so. I'm all for twee bluegrass.

  • Rheinallt H. Rowlands "Gwawr Newydd Yn Cilio (New Dawn Fades)" (Welsh Joy Division cover)
    A reader (sorry, I don't remember who!) sent me this a while back, and I'm indebted. What other Welsh covers out there should I/we know about?

  • Richard Hawley "Some Candy Talking" (The Jesus & Mary Chain cover)
    Definitely one of the most worthwhile tracks on that Q cover sampler that came out a year or two ago.

  • Straylight Run "Velvet Waltz" (Built to Spill cover)
    Apparently there's some emo drama surrounding this band, but even I'm not bored enough to look up what it is.

  • Ruby Isle "Teen Age Riot" (Sonic Youth cover)
    How cute and poppy is that intro? I'm hoping to post an all-Sonic Youth post soon to celebrate that my best friend Ryan is visiting me next month and taking me to see Sonic Youth perform Daydream Nation at the Pitchfork fest. I've inexplicably never seen Sonic youth live before, but I figure that's the thing to see... even if it means I have to be outside for a few hours in a dusty field full of hipsters during sweltering mid-July.

  • Geoff Keezer "Lose My Breath" (My Bloody Valentine cover)
    You know that imaginary coffee shop of mine? Jazz piano versions of shoegaze classics will definitely be on the menu.

  • Axton Kincaid "I Wanna Be Adored" (The Stone Roses cover)
    One of the few Stone Roses covers that didn't make it into my Brit Pop-themed posts a few months back. And another twee bluegrass cover, since apparently that's what the kids are craving.

  • Maydrïm "Shakespeare's Sister" (The Smiths cover)
    Pretty, electronic, Spanish. Why not?

  • Brother Love Canal "Gigantic" (The Pixies cover)
    This is my homage to the soon approaching Pride festivities here in the city. I can totally see most people, especially die-hard Pixies fans, loathing this, but I have to admit it makes me laugh and I'd totally dance to its chill Vengaboysian rhythms. (This marks the third time in the blog's history that I've described a song as Vengaboysian, and I'm certain all the kids are eventually going to allow it to permeate their lexicon. Watch your etymological back, Rachael Ray!!!)

  • Dirt Bike Annie "Are you Ready for the Summer" (Meatballs theme, comp. Bernstein/Gimbel)
    Okay, this isn't an indie staple. It's just my way for saying Happy Summer to everyone out there who, unlike me, actually likes it and wants to celebrate it. And because Meatballs rules. Chris Makepeace, I miss you!!!
  • Friday, June 15, 2007

    Frightened of the things I might find.

  • The Hot Stewards "The Edge of Heaven" (Wham! cover)

  • Juliane Werding "Niemand Hat Zeit (Too Much Time on My Hands)" (German Styx cover)

  • Spouse "Voices Carry" ('Til Tuesday cover)

  • Ronnie Spector "You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory" (Johnny Thunders cover)

  • The Robustos "I Heard it Through the Grapevine" (comp. Whitfield/Strong)

  • The Black Kites "Lucretia My Reflection" (The Sisters of Mercy cover)

  • Jenny Owen Youngs "Hot in Herre" (Nelly cover)

  • The Creams "Yesterday" (The Beatles cover)

  • Voltaire "Caught a Lite Sneeze" (Tori Amos cover)

  • Beyond Mirth "Uninvited" (Alanis Morrissette cover)
  • Sunday, June 10, 2007

    I remember when I lost my mind.

    I hope this doesn't come off bitchy or anything, but I'd really appreciate it if those of you sending MP3s to my inbox would check to see whether or not I've already posted the tracks first. There is a search bar in the upper left corner of the site that should assist you in said endeavor. Granted, chances are good that even if I've not posted it, I already have it, but at least there's a chance I haven't.

    Similarly, all of you bands and PR people who tell me you "love my site" and want me to "review" your work? I'm calling bullshit because almost NONE of you seem to realize I ONLY POST COVER SONGS.

    Now to offset how cranky I am right now, reader K2 alerted me to this and I think I like it better than any of the tons of other covers of this track out there right now:

    Saturday, June 09, 2007

    Upstairs at Liza's

    Lately I've revisited what I thought was a long-gone obsession with Yazoo's Upstairs at Eric's album. It's generally the first LP I think to throw on the turntable when I'm doing housework. And it's as awesome as ever. Here's a little tribute:

  • 01 Terminal Choice "Don't Go" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 02 Blind Before Dawn "Too Pieces" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 03 The Hi-Fives "Bad Connection" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)
    This is my favorite of the lot. It makes me very happy.

  • 04 Marianne Nowottny "I Before E Except After C" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 05 Steve Adam "Midnight" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 06 Soviet "In My Room" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 07 Even in Blackouts "Only You" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 08 Suspiria "Goodbye Seventies" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 09 Tom Jones "Situation" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • 10 Gold Chains & Jillian Eva "Winter Kills" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

    And to make up for the fact that I was unable to locate evidence of anyone having covered the last track of the U@E album—"Bring Your Love Down (Didn't I)"—here are a few extra Yazoo-related tracks:

  • Garbo and Telepong "Nobody's Diary" (Yaz/Yazoo cover)

  • Fink "All Cried Out" (Alison Moyet cover)
  • Friday, June 01, 2007

    You must not know 'bout him.

    Just when the original managed to escape the constant playlist in my head, here comes a cover that puts it right back there. Thanks to reader Jill who pointed me in the direction of a guy named D and his cover of Beyonce's "Irreplaceable," which you can download over at his MySpace page. I'm loving it.

    Tuesday, May 29, 2007

    Turn back—oh, oh—the hands of time.

    It just occurred to me that I've been blogging covers for more than three years, so to celebrate I've decided to do what I rarely do and revisit some gems from the past. Below are tracks I posted in 2004 that are either reader or personal faves (and, in a few cases, just weird/bad tracks that amuse me). I know a lot of readers didn't know about me back then. I believe I timed these so that they could be burned to audio disc for posterity, should you be so inclined. Enjoy!

    Collections from 2005-2007 forthcoming.

    (Unrelated: Buy Threadless shirts!)

    Copy, Right's Best Posts of 2004 (and one accidentally from 2005) Revisited

  • 01 The Frogs "Vacation" (Go-Go's cover)
    Originally posted October 12, 2004.

  • 02 Jason Falkner "Photograph" (Def Leppard cover)
    Originally posted November 2, 2004.

  • 03 The Quakes "The Killing Moon" (Echo & the Bunnymen cover)
    Originally posted November 2, 2004.

  • 04 The Deldagos "Mr. Blue Sky" (ELO cover)
    Originally posted June 29, 2004.

  • 05 Aroah "Cupid Come" (My Bloody Valentine cover)
    Originally posted April 7, 2004.

  • 06 Jamelia "Numb" (Linkin Park cover)
    Originally posted September 7, 2004. (Actually, this is not the studio version that was in that post but a later live recording because I couldn't readily find the studio track in my millions of back-up discs. You get the gist.)

  • 06 Hikashu "The Model" (Kraftwerk cover)
    Originally posted July 16, 2004.

  • 08 The Notwist "Johnny & Mary" (Robert Palmer cover)
    Originally posted March 14, 2005. (D'oh! I thought it was 2004. Whatever.)

  • 09 Pixels "Gigamuffin" (Pixies cover, sort of)
    Originally posted November 22, 2004.

  • 10 Low IQ 01 feat. Yukari Fresh "Anarchy in the UK" (Sex Pistols cover)
    Originally posted July 22, 2004.

  • 11 The Softies "Together Forever" (Rick Astley cover)
    Originally posted March 29, 2004.

  • 12 My Chemical Romance "All I Want for Christmas is You" (Mariah Carey cover)
    Originally posted December 19, 2004.

  • 13 Solex "Shady Lane" (Pavement cover)
    Originally posted March 9, 2004.

  • 14 The Balenescu Quartet "Pocket Calculator" (Kraftwerk cover)
    Originally posted June 18, 2004.

  • 15 Cinerama "All the Things She Said" (t.A.T.u. cover)
    Originally posted March 29, 2004.

  • 16 Macha & Bedhead "Believe" (Cher cover)
    Originally posted March 9, 2004.

  • <17 Mogwai "Don't Cry" (Guns N' Roses cover)
    Originally posted October 26, 2004.

  • 18 Sobaki Tobaka! "In Your Room" (Depeche Mode cover)
    Originally posted June 2, 2004.

  • 19 Class "We Don't Have to Take Our Clothes Off" (Jermaine Stewart cover)
    Originally posted May 27, 2004.

  • 20 Clem Snide "Beautiful" (Christina Aguilera cover)
    Originally posted March 5, 2004.
  • Tuesday, May 22, 2007

    Throw off your mental chains.

    I want to blog about a few of these (aka warn you about some of them), but I have a friend visiting from out of town and I don't have the time. Sorry, yo.

    Edit, Thurs. May 24, 7:35 AM Central Time: One of my web hosts has been having intermittent DNS issues and is working to fix it. If you've had difficulty downloading these tracks, my apologies. I just uploaded them to a different host so they should be working momentarily. Please give it a moment and refresh your browser and try again.

  • Bob Nanna "Emperor's New Clothes" (Sinead O'Connor cover)

  • Beat Crusaders "New Song" (Howard Jones cover)

  • Gazzara "Turn it on Again" (Genesis cover)

  • Graveworm "Holding Out for a Hero" (Bonnie Tyler cover)

  • Kaiser Chiefs "What Time is Love?" (The KLF cover)

  • Len "Cool it Now" (New Edition cover)

  • Rosa "Let the River Run" (Carly Simon cover)

  • Shizuka "If you Need Someone" (The Field Mice cover)

  • Siela "Plainsong" (The Cure cover)

  • Sunshiners "Shake the Disease" (Depeche Mode cover)

  • Tarkio (Colin Meloy) "Goodbye Girl" (Squeeze cover)

  • The Wonder Stuff "Inside You" (Pop Will Eat Itself cover)
  • Sunday, May 13, 2007

    No, I would not give you false hope.

    Happy Mother's Day to all you crazy moms reading. As promised, here are a few mom-themed tracks. I barely managed to post this in a timely fashion, but am proud that I have. Now if I can get it completed before the Survivor finale, we'll all win! That means I can only give comments on a few tracks—which, let's face it, are always more about me than the songs anyhow—so I'm sure you'll live.

    Sadly, most songs about or referencing mothers or mamas or moms are not always the most sentimental or forgiving, and I apologize for that. Still, I think I managed to find a decent balance. Sure, it was difficult to narrow it down so that only one track mentions a desire to kill a mother and have sex with her corpse, but somehow I did.

  • Dana & Karen Kletter "Your Mother Wants to Know" (Scrawl cover)
    I've previously mentioned my former Scrawl obsession, and this song is the one that really sealed the deal for me. I was so excited to learn that it's been covered, and I think this version adds a new dimension to it. The original, obviously, delivers the same message lyrically, but does so with a jaded tone I so related to at the time I first heard it. Not that the delivery can't be bitter AND sentimental, of course, but this cover makes me feel sadder for the mother than the protagonist, and the original does the opposite.

  • Bongwater "Julia" (Beatles cover)
    John Lennon loved his mom. When he wrote this, anyhow.

  • Neutral Milk Hotel feat. Chris Knox "Mother" (John Lennon cover)
    As you might imagine, it gets pretty screamy at the end. Be prepared to turn the volume down a bit unless you're into that.

  • Old 97's "Mama Tried" (Merle Haggard cover)
    Speaking of mothers and Merle Haggard, when I was about 8-10 years old, my mother took me to a Merle Haggard concert at the Holiday Star Plaza. During the intermission (weird that there was an intermission at a concert), an old woman passed out on the floor and started vomiting, which mildly traumatized me. I could think of nothing else for the duration of the show. Not even during "Okie from Muskogee."

  • Pioneers "Mother and Child Reunion" (Paul Simon cover)
    I'm not a big reggae fan, which is a shame considering the multitudes of reggae covers that exist. This track, however, makes me very happy.

  • The Section Quartet "I Wanna Get A Mohawk (But Mom Won't Let Me Get One)" (AFI cover)
    Sometimes mothers are right, kid.

  • Stone 588 "Dream for Mother" (Christian Death cover)
    The aforementioned sexist, matricidal, necrophiliac Mother's Day classic.

  • The Hydes "Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby (Standing in the Shadow)?" (Rolling Stones cover)

  • Satirine "Mama's Boy" (Ramones cover)

  • Bouncing Souls "Mommy, Can I Go Out and Kill Tonight?" (Misfits cover)

  • Glen Meadmore "There's No One Like Mother to Me" (Carter Family cover)

  • Kenny Ball & His Jazzmen "Your Mother Should Know" (Beatles cover)
  • We could be sister and brother.

    Awesome local music blog Radio Free Chicago has an all-cover podcast available for your listening pleasure here. I will respectively disagree with the writer's assertion that Nick Cave's cover of Pulp's "Disco 2000" is particularly genius, as I've long found it surprisingly and disappointingly tedious, but to each his or her own, yes? (Particularly considering some of the cheesy or otherwise questionable covers I actually like, no?) Still, you might hear covers there you've never heard and you might love the Nick Cave track, so what are you waiting for?

    Hmmm. Podcasting...

    Saturday, May 12, 2007

    Just a boy who's meant to sing this song.

    Okay, when I make a mistake I admit it. Had I known years ago that the Internet would become what it has become, I might have actually tried a little harder to sustain a committed relationship beyond a few weeks and perhaps might have revised my plans to never have a child. But how could we have ever predicted that we would eventually live in a world where we could record our young children singing karaoke versions of My Chemical Romance's "Welcome to the Black Parade" for all the world to hear?

    Brendan - Welcome ...

    Holy crap, that's adorable. Weird the things that actually make my biological clock almost want to tick, no?

    You want to see whatever common people see.

    As you all know, YouTube is rife with covers by people no one has ever heard of who happen to have webcams, but every now and again you'll stumble on something/someone who isn't total crap and is just plain charming and cute. It doesn't seem remotely possible that it would be legal for me to find someone born in 1987 so damned adorable, but it is. I cannot believe 1987 was 20 years ago.

    Anthony Hill covers Pulp and Lily Allen, respectively:

    Friday, May 11, 2007

    I've been changing my mind.

    It's amazing how long it takes to perform everyday tasks when the scroll wheel on your mouse suddenly stops working. I practically feel as if I'm Laura Ingalls (and her numerous siblings) having to do homework with chalk on a small personal slate. I'm working on posting a mom-themed post before Sunday. We'll see how long it actually takes me.

    Hmm. I think I've hit a mid-entry change of heart and have decided to post a few tracks before the mom post. I did it quick, so the tags might not be as detailed as I generally like them to be. Here goes:

  • Mollycuddle "U Mass" (Pixies cover)
    Mollycuddle is a sickeningly cute name for a band. Or a child carrier.

  • De Saloon & Denisse Malabrán (of Chilean group Saiko) "Erase/Rewind" (Cardigans cover)
    In this cover, Denisse Malabrán's sounds a bit like my friend Ami's, though not quite as good. Lo, I like seeing people cover Cardigans songs besides "Lovefool," paricularly with south American accents, so it's all good to me.

  • S.H.E "Bie Shuo Dui Bu Qi (Everytime)" (Britney Spears cover in Chinese, I think)
    I'm too lazy sans functioning scroll wheel to talk about S.H.E, so I'll let Wikipedia do it for me. They've done a lot of covers.

  • DJ Goldfinger feat. Felisha "Runaway (Goldfinger's NRG Single Edit)" (Bon Jovi cover)
    It's just your standard cheesy dance cover, yet still somehow a million times better than any of the crappy performances by American Idol contestants on Bon Jovi night. I know, I know. I shouldn't have gotten my hopes up in the first place. (Aside: I hate Blake sooooooooo much.)

  • [spunge] "Circle in the Sand" (Belinda Carlisle cover)
    A band whose name includes pointless brackets would generally fall off my radar just on principle, but for a dime-a-dozen ska/punk cover, it could certainly be much worse.
  • Thursday, May 03, 2007

    We all look elsewhere.

  • Just in case you're not obsessively checking what I add to my blog roll, I feel I need to point you in the direction of Absonderpop—as well as its German-language counterpart, should that interest you—where you can download originals, remixes and many many covers of whatever song is featured each entry. Seriously, if you like what I do and enjoy collecting as many covers as possible in a range of genres, you'd be remiss not to check it early and often.
  • Wednesday, May 02, 2007

    I got nothing to say I ain't said before.

  • Lambchop "This Corrosion" (Sisters of Mercy cover)
    It's a genre I never got too obsessed with, this dark alt-country-meets-chamber-pop stuff, and I'm not sure why since I actually quite like it. Well, I was once temporarily obsessed with 16 Horsepower, but that was about a decade ago. Anyhow, I'm revisiting it, and find that I love it when these type of outfits cover goth staples.

    Speaking of 16HP, for your viewing & listening pleasure, allegedly they chose Joy Division's "Heart and Soul" as their final live song ever: