Faith No More was never a band to play it safe and that is one of the things I’ve always loved about them. Throughout their history, especially when Mike Patton joined, Faith No More was always a band that pushed limits and tried new things whether they worked or not. Back in 1995, there were a few times while on tour when Faith No More would add a cover to their set and this cover happened to be “Glory Box” by the one and only Portishead. It’s a solid cover and Mike adds his touch to it which makes it all that much more enjoyable. I personally would love to hear Mike cover a couple other Portishead songs as I think he’d do them justice!
Way back in the mid 00’s on IFC, Henry Rollins had a really great talk show. It was a really good show with interview guests as well as musical guests. The majority of the episodes are quite good and Henry always had really interesting questions for his guests. One of the best parts of the show was the musical guests. Henry had a plethora of great music guests including Slayer! There is one episode that I’ve always been fond of and that happened back in 2007 when Placebo was the musical guest for the show. During their stop on the show the band played 2 songs “Blind” from their amazing album, Meds, as well as their cover of Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill,” which is still the best cover of this song! I do have to emphasize that the performance of both songs are exquisite but, “Blind” takes the cake on this one. I’ve seen Placebo live a few times in my life but, I’ve never seen Brian Molko sing “Blind” quite like this. It’s otherworldly! This is genuinely one of my all time favorite TV performances ever! Enjoy!
Placebo- Blind (Live on The Henry Rollins Show- 2007):
Placebo- Running Up That Hill (Live on The Henry Rollins Show- 2007):
I keep finding myself going on these artist catalog deep dives and finding things I’ve forgotten about. I love when that happens. Recently in the past few days, I wound up going on a Nirvana deep dive. I’m not quite sure how I wound up here but, while going through all sorts of their songs, albums, demos, etc, I remembered that they did a cover of The Velvet Underground’s “Here She Comes Now.” When I listen back to the Nirvana version, it’s kind of interesting that at moments, Kurt really does sound like Lou Reed. The cover is a pretty solid and good version. As a huge fan of both The Velvet Underground and Lou Reed, I can get behind this version. Plus it gives me an excuse to take a break from my Nirvana deep dive and go listen to The Velvet Underground!
Nirvana (The Velvet Underground)- Here She Comes Now:
Nirvana- Here She Comes Now (Live 1991):
The Velvet Underground- Here She Comes Now (from the album White Light/White Heat):
What would the 1990’s be like without The X-Files? It was one of the best shows of the 90’s without a doubt. The popularity of the show grew by leaps and bounds and in 1998 there was a feature length film to accompany the series. The movie while decent produced a pretty damn good soundtrack featuring Filter, Foo Fighters, The Cure, Bjork, Noel Gallagher and more. The album’s producer, David Was, intended to match the film’s tone rather than using the songs as content, leading to several of the artists involved contributing material which would seem “uncharacteristically eerie” compared to their usual work. Many of the songs that appear on the soundtrack are cover versions like Filter covering Harry Nillsson’s “One.” This one in particular was deliberately constructed by Was once he realized that Duchovny had ad-libbed the song’s opening line during one of the film’s scenes. Filter’s version of “One” is striking and fits the vibe of the the film.
Yesterday I had a Stone Temple Pilots song stuck in my head (it was “Trippin On A Hole In A Paper Heart” in case you were wondering). While I had that song replaying in my mind, I found myself delving into the very underrated and unsung masterpiece album that is Tiny Music… From The Vatican Gift Shop (which I will get into on another day because that album is truly great). During that time in 1996, while out promoting the album, Stone Temple Pilots stopped by the Howard Stern show for an interview and performance. Howard, who you can tell is a fan of the band and had them on the show throughout their career, as well as just Scott Weiland, mentioned that he loved their recent cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Dancing Days,” and low and behold, STP would go on to perform it that day on the show (they also performed “Seven Caged Tigers” as well). I truly think this cover is spectacular. I don’t know how many times I’ve listened to this version over the years but, it’s definitely up there. I just love the honest and pure approach STP had to their music and time together. It’s performances like this that make me miss Scott Weiland. What a talent and voice! You are missed Scott!
Stone Temple Pilots (Led Zeppelin)- Dancing Days on Howard Stern:
The other day I had a song stuck in my head and after about 10 minutes I remembered who the band was and I went and put it on. The band was Professional Murder Music, who you might remember from the early 2000’s and their inclusion on the End Of Days soundtrack with their song “Slow.” While listening to their album, I remembered their very great cover of The Cure’s “A Night Like This.” While listening to that I thought, I should listen to another cover of the song by The Smashing Pumpkins. The pumpkins version is sung by James Iha so it has a different vibe than you’d normally get as we are so used to Billy/William as the singer. So I spent some time with both and I have my favorite of the two. Which one do you prefer?
Professional Murder Music- A Night Like This:
The Smashing Pumpkins (James Iha on Vocals)- A Night Like This:
I have a list of 80’s songs that I have fond appreciation for. One of those songs is Modern English’s “I Melt With You.” I remember hearing it when I was a little kid and really thinking it was a fun song and would sing along to it. Even to this day if I’m flipping through the radio and I come across this song, I always stop to listen and sing along. And now it gets even better as one of my new favorite projects, Covert Stations, have released their version of this classic. The Covert Stations version adds a playful and fun sensibility to the already “cruise in the car with the windows down” vibe the song has. It’s quite fun to revisit these songs with a different perspective and I can’t wait for the next one in this series. And shoutout to my friend Craig and all involved in this project. You guys are on a roll!!!
Covert Stations (Modern English)- I Melt With You:
Covert Stations are back with their second cover off their upcoming series of covers from songs of the 70’s and 80’s. This classic by The Cult is forever one of the best songs to come out of the 80’s. And to this day when it’s played on the radio or when The Cult plays it live, it is still an anthem. This version by Covert Stations keeps it close to the original with a bit of a “chuggier/slightly heavier” guitar crunch and the soaring vocals of Craig Cirinelli takes it to the other level a cover should go.
Ever since I went to see The Smashing Pumpkins a coiuple weeks ago, I’ve been reliving the show in my head. One of the moments of the show that really stood out to me was when they played their cover of The Talking Heads “Once In A Lifetime.” The original version is still astounding and this version, especially the arrangement the Pumpkins put together takes on a life of its own. I still can’t get over how damn good this was.
This topic about track one songs is quite fun and interesting. The first song on album more often than not sets the tone for what is to come and on this particular song, it does just that. On the debut album by Drive Like Jehu, they not only kicked open the door with “Caress” but they made damn sure that the impact from the track would sonically blow you away. This is one of those songs that is often copied but can never be truly duplicated. The intensity, subject matter, tonality, production and performances on “Caress” as well as the whole album is astounding. On a side note too, “Caress” was covered by Deftones and released as a b-side on their Diamond Eyes album.