Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Top 5 Cover Versions

I love a good cover version, sometimes a great song can be given a whole new perspective and sometimes a shit one can be given a new lease of life.

1. "Have Love Will Travel" The Sonics original by Richard Berry - Mr Berry wrote a huge number of songs that ended up being bigger hits for other performers and this is possibly one of his most covered songs. There are loads of great versions out there but this one by The Sonics takes my breath away. A great fuzzed up rock sound that is hard to believe was recorded in 1965.

2. "Mercy Seat" Johnny Cash original by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Johnny Cash has a huge catalogue of wonderful cover versions especially those recorded in the last 10 years or so with Rick Rubin under the American Recordings banner. This is for me the stand out cover though. A cracking song about a man about to be fried in the electric chair, Cash's vocal actually makes you believe he is that man in the chair. Powerful stuff.

3. "The Model" Big Black original by Kraftwerk - Big Black are a noisy hardcore band from Chicago, Kraftwerk are an electronica act from Germany. It shouldn't work but it does.

4. "Pictures of Matchstick Men" Camper van Beethoven original by Status Quo - A psychedelic pop song that Francis Rossi wrote on the loo and became The Quo's first single. Camper van Beethoven turned it into an College Rock favourite and achieved their highest selling album.

5. "Colombian Necktie" The Charles Napiers original by Big Black - Big Black were hardly shrinking violets yet somehow, Britain's premier Mondo Wray instrumental combo, make it even heavier and louder.

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