About six months ago, Metallica released an alternate version of “Blackened.” This was obviously done during these very strange times we are living in. I really enjoy when bands break down their songs to the bare bones. Having a more acoustic feel to this song definitely gives it a different vibe. The original from And Justice For All is in my top 5 all time favorite Metallica songs. This new version, I have to say is quite fun. I’d really be interested to hear Metallica do a full on acoustic set in the same way the classic MTV Unplugged’s were.
I’ve spent a lot of the past year or so doing a huge deep delve into The Smashing Pumpkins and rekindling my love for this band. It’s been pretty obvious, if you haven’t been able to tell by all the posts. Being able to watch so many different live performances of the Pumpkins of just Billy solo throughout the years has been truly awesome. There are so many great shows online as well as individual performances of certain songs. The other evening as I was falling asleep, I somehow wound up thinking about the song “Tonight, Tonight” and found myself drawn into a rabbit hole of different versions of the song on YouTube. One such performance really grabbed me for some reason and that would be from back in 2012 when Billy appeared on the Howard Stern show and performed “Tonight, Tonight” at Howard’s request and gave a little history on the song. This alternate version has been stuck with me and now you can enjoy it with me!
Billy Corgan- Tonight, Tonight on The Howard Stern Show/2012:
For quite a while now, I’ve been delving deeper and deeper into The Smashing Pumpkins and Billy Corgan catalog. Along the way, I’ve discovered a plethora of songs that I forgot about and rediscovered my love of this band and what a truly great songwriter Billy is. One of the songs that I’ve really obsessed over is “Stand Inside Your Love” from the Machina album. Every time I come across a different version of this song, I get chills and find myself lost in a trance. This is truly an amazing song. Here’s a live solo acoustic version of it that I absolutely adore.
Yesterday was marked 4 years since we lost Scott Weiland. It still sucks that he couldn’t get past all his demons to still create beautiful words and melodies. That being said though, we still have all the other great songs and albums he was a part of. Just like this very memorable performance from when Scott and Dean DeLeo were on Headbangers Ball and performed “Plush” acoustically. So take a few moments and enjoy this and celebrate the musical legacy Scott left us.
STP- Plush (on Headbangers Ball):
35 Years ago, before Ministry became what we all know them to be know, they were a very cool synth pop/new wave band. In 1984 they released the song “(Everyday) Is Halloween.” For many, many years though, that song went unplayed until late 2018, when Al brought it out of retirement at a Los Angeles stop on tour, accompanied by Dave Navarro. Well after that happened, there seemed to be a resurgence of people listening to the song and clamoring for more of it. So, here we are and now, Al along with Dave have released a new acoustic version of the song and, it’s quite a great version. Enjoy!
Ministry- Everyday Is Halloween (featuring Dave Navarro):
The other day while I was reading my daily music news, I came across an article that went into detail about the making of the “acoustic” version of the Deftones song “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away). In the article, it was mentioned by DJ Crook, who made the “remix” version, that he was originally sent a cassette with vocals and guitar of Chino and Far singer Jonah Matranga. Crook then said “All I had at the time was this drum machine (8 yrs old at the time) and a tascam 4-track cassette recorder (10 yrs old at the time). I tapped out the tempo of the song and laid out the beat and recorded it on the other free tracks directly on the cassette they sent me. It magically stayed in sync. I dumped that down to another cassette and sent it back to them.” Needless to say the end result was something quite different than the original and it gave the song a totally different vibe. I’ve always dug on this version. It also happens to be the first Deftones song I ever learned to play. I still go ape shit when they play it live too. It’s such a great song. Anyways, enjoy this alternate version!
Deftones- Be Quiet And Drive (Far Away) “Acoustic”:
Sevendust has always been consistent on releasing new music. Following the release and tour for their last album Black Out The Sun, they didn’t waste anytime and got right back into writing mode. In late 2013, Sevendust used crowd funding (a subject that will get a lengthy write up soon) to help get their new album Time Travelers and Bonfires done. What came from that was an acoustic album featuring 6 new songs and 6 older songs redone. The end result is quite spectacular. The more stripped down Sevendust gets, the more it shows how good they really are. Lajon Witherspoon has one of the best voices in rock music and showcases it especially on the song “Under It All.” Musically this album really helps to shed light on how good these guys are at songwriting. New songs like “Upbeat Sugar,” “Come Down” could’ve been songs in the more traditional Sevendust style, but they really do fit better in this atmosphere. The “old” songs that were redone really come across in a new light. “Black” from their debut album and “Denial” from Home are done in such a away that it seems like they are entirely new songs.
As I’ve previously written Sevendust are definitely worth taking another look. And now with this release, it really shows that Sevendust are a band that should be taken seriously. Do yourself a favor and give this a good listen and you’ll see what I mean!