Cover Me

It really is all about recycling these days.

The age of the cover song is back.  In the golden years of rock'n'roll it wasn't uncommon for bands to cover each other - often only a few months after a track had been released by the original artist.  But in these modern times, sampling has been the preferred method of recycling old material.  The worst offender, of course, being Kanye West, who consistently insists on barking his inane rubbish over the top of records (including putting his stamp all over Daft Punk - with their express permission, something I'm not sure I can ever reconcile ...).

The problem relates, I believe, to the musical education of the masses. The kids that consume the rehashed hits have no idea that the music they are based upon was previously a success of its own.  

There is no excuse, however, for the handbag hard house trance cover of eighties classics. During a beach cafe breakfast in Ibiza I was subjected to several monstrosities - including a european vocal treatment at 140bpm of Ultravox's  "Dancing With Tears In My Eyes".  My gym insists on playing "Hard To Say I'm Sorry" by Chicago - as covered by some band called Aquagen - who have simply quadrupled the tempo and thrown a snare and synth overtop of Peter Cetera.

On the very, very rare occasion you are reminded of a dance version of a classic that truly becomes a slice of genius that stands up on its own.  Maybe its my love of the Boss, or perhaps just the joy of the wood block, but recently (whilst enjoying the sounds of Thursday nights at the Joiners Arms) I was reacquainted with Natalie Cole's late eighties cover of Pink Cadillac and experienced a disco epiphany of my own.

Photo of Recycled Records from pb031 on Flickr

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