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Weird but great cover songs

Discussion in 'The Musiquarium' started by Shawn Hopkins, Aug 15, 2008.

  1. Shawn Hopkins

    Shawn Hopkins TZ Member of the Year 2013

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    Have you ever heard a cover of a popular song that was offbeat and unusual, perhaps in a different style than the original, but still a great interpretation that you found worth listening to? What did the new artist add with their spin on the song?

    I think one of the most famous examples might be the Run DMC cover of Aerosmith's "Walk This Way." Putting that to a rap beat really added some juice to the song and it was so popular it actually brought Aerosmith's careers back from the dead.

    The Fat Boys have covered one of James Brown's signature songs, "Sex Machine." I thought it would be stupid with a lot of human beat box thrown in, but actually it's a great cover that mixes a thumping beat, some actual singing from the Boys, funky samples and good rap bits. It's faithful to original in funky spirit even if it mixed new rap lyrics in with it.

    Also, Cibo Matto have a kind of crazy interpretation of the Sammy Davis Jr. standard "The Candy Man," itself a cover that originated in the 1971 Willy Wonka movie, that I really like. It's trippy, slowed down and weird and it really fits in with their album "Viva! La Woman," which is mostly songs with a food theme. Listening to Miho Hatori breathe about how the Candy Man "makes the world taste good" definitely suggests intriguing possibilities and shades of meaning for the song.
     
  2. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Well-Known Member

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    I got one for you. Alien Ant Farm covering Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" for their first single in '01. MTV played this to death.

    Others:

    Bananarama covering Shocking Blue's 1-hit wonder, "Venus", and making it better.

    Mick Jagger & David Bowie doing Martha & the Vandellas' "Dancing in the Streets" (1985). Horrid.

    Tom Jones & the Art of Noise doing Prince's "Kiss", just 3 years after the original climbed the charts.
     
  3. Silverstar

    Silverstar Rock the Dragon

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    Here are some covers that I enjoyed more than the originals:
    • The Art of Noise featuring Tom Jones' cover of Prince's "Kiss"
    • Samantha Siva's cover of Simon & Garfunkel's "Scarborough Fair" (I always thought that song called for a female vocalist anyway)
    • Alien Ant Farm's cover of Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" (and 'Smooth Criminal" is one of the few Michael Jackson songs that I truly like)
    • Cibo Matto's cover of Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun" (one thing that was really cool about it, aside from how they slowed it down from the original and gave it this eerie, mystical vibe, was how in their version the words "Black Hole Sun" were the only lyrics that were sang in English)
    Also, I recently purchased an mp3 of The Stereophonics' cover of one of my all-time favorite songs, "Mama Told Me Not to Come" by Three Dog Night. I used to think that 3DN were the only ones permitted to perform that song, but The Stereophonics did a credible job. Man, Tom Jones can belt out a tune.
     
  4. Movie06

    Movie06 Active Member

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    Well, I really like Megadeth's cover version of No More Mr. Nice Guy. Actually, I prefer that version of the original Alice Cooper song.
     
  5. Goldstar Neo

    Goldstar Neo Good Morning!

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    One of the coolest covers that I've heard was when The Police performed a new version of their own hit "Don't Stand So Close to Me" in 1985. They made it slower and haunting. I really like it.

    Damone once performed a slow version of their own song "Out Here All Night" on a basic cable show.

    Also, I like Onyx's remix of "Slam" that they performed with Biohazard. I actually like the remix more than the original "Slam".
     
  6. Shawn Hopkins

    Shawn Hopkins TZ Member of the Year 2013

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    I just found a clip of that online. It really is haunting, and it kinda gets its hooks into you. Especially when she sings whatever the Japanese is for "and wash away the rain" and the part that apparently corresponds to "and I'll hear you scream again" before the first chorus kicks in.

    Hey, there's a band that's devoted whole albums to Bluegrass covers of Rock Songs. It's called Hayseed Dixie and that is a take on AC/DC. My favorite of their covers is their version Motorhead's "Ace of Spades." They make it sound like it was designed for picking. They also do a great, fast-paced cover of Black Sabbath's "Warpigs." It's just awesome to hear it in a country boy voice and they play it with gusto.

    I can't believe I forgot this one, because it's probably my favorite. The Johnny Cash cover of the Nine Inch Nail's Song "Hurt." In Cash's experienced, almost dry voice and in the context of his tumultuous life the song becomes his own. I think the lyrics about loss and pain simply mean more when it comes from someone who has lived a lifetime of it and is able to contrast it with all the joys and triumphs of a life fully lived.

    The arrangement is also wonderful. I love how it swells near the end. Great video, too.
     
  7. Michael24

    Michael24 Moderator
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    Despite being Disturbed, I actually liked their cover of Genesis's "Land of Confusion." It had a really awesome sound, and the music video (by Todd McFarlane) was cool.

    And of course, Taco's unique version of "Puttin' on the Ritz."

    I like The Fat Boys' cover of "Wipe Out" with The Beach Boys. Odd pairing, but somehow it works. :)

    I prefer the original NIN version (and I'm not even much of a NIN fan), but that was a great cover. Like you said, just being that it's Johnny Cash adds much more to it. And I thought it was pretty cool that Trent Reznor said in an interview, "As far as I'm concerned, that's a Johnny Cash song now."
     
  8. Harlan_Phoenix

    Harlan_Phoenix Active Member

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    I dunno who did it, but I heard a rock/screamo/whatever version of Baby Got Back once.

    That was awesome.
     
  9. defunctzombie

    defunctzombie 1992 not 2002
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    All along the watchtower by Dylan and covered by Hendrix. Good cover. When I heard Dylan's for the first time I thought he was the cover artist.
     
  10. Dirty Dawg

    Dirty Dawg Chinese Democracy starts NOW!

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    Actually,the artist was Throwdown.And you're right its an awsome cover
     
  11. George3000

    George3000 Member

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    Jump5's version of Walking on Sunshine (2005).
     
  12. Draft

    Draft Active Member

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    They Might Be Giants' Istanbul, Not Constantinople
     
  13. Anarky

    Anarky Team Conan

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    "Hit Me Baby One More Time" covered by Travis. I heard this live in Atlanta several yrs ago. Completely out of leftfield. My first reaction was WTF? Then hilarity ensued. I applaud the Brits cheeky lampooning of our shite music.
     
  14. Nel_Annette

    Nel_Annette Living it up.

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    I agree with Johnny Cash's version of "Hurt" and AAF's version of "Smooth Criminal".

    I recently heard Staind's live acoustic version of Tool's "Sobor", and liked it. I also enjoy Placebo's cover of "Runnin' Up That Hill".

    EDIT: Forgot to mention Glass Hammer's cover of "South Side Of The Sky." I didn't even know the band had a female singer until I heard that, though I didn't know much about the band back then to begin with.
     
    #14 Nel_Annette, Aug 16, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2008
  15. Cassie Star

    Cassie Star I have no gender.

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    Dave Matthews Band's version is better.

    As for weird covers, Nickel Creek's cover of Britney Spears' "Toxic". I was skeptical until I actually heard it.
     
  16. Anarky

    Anarky Team Conan

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    "Hit Me Baby One More Time" covered by Travis. I heard this live in Atlanta several yrs ago. Completely out of leftfield. My first reaction was WTF? Then hilarity ensued. I applaud the Brits cheeky lampooning of our shite music.
     
  17. Silverstar

    Silverstar Rock the Dragon

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    I'm embarrassed to say this, but until recently I thought that "Hurt" was a Johnny Cash song; I had to read here that it was actually a cover. It seems to be tailor-made for the Man in Black.

    Another cover I enjoyed was PM Dawn's cover of Jimi Hndrix's "You Got Me Floatin'".
     
  18. Crash

    Crash Active Member

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    Meatloaf turned Celine Dion's "It's All Coming Back to Me Now" into a duet. It's, well, it's pretty awesome.

    Nightwish did a cover of "Over the Hills and Far Away" that's pretty good. Alas, once I heard the Gary Moore version, well, the original was better.
     
  19. Harlan_Phoenix

    Harlan_Phoenix Active Member

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    That's been bugging me for so long, and it's finally been answered.
     
  20. Cassie Star

    Cassie Star I have no gender.

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    Even stranger, the song was actually written solely for him in the first place.
     

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