I’ve been injured lately–shortening of muscle/tendon in right (dominant) arm from scar tissue built up in elbow/wrist. All that computering, taking a toll. PEOPLE, WATCH YOUR POSTURE! *ahem* I can’t write much without dictation, cannot game. What I CAN do is watch stuff and listen to music. I am currently entrenched in anime-land and, because it seems appropriate, the music of my youth.
Today’s post is about cover songs. I’ve heard many people say that they feel so strongly about original versions of songs that for another artist to do a cover would be sacrilege. Sometimes a cover happens and it’s tepid at best, an insult at worst. Every now and then, a cover reinvents the original song. Today’s song is none of those, not for me. The original song breaks my heart into a thousand pieces, and the cover version smashes it into a MILLION glimmering shards. Siouxsie and the Banshees have always been stunning. When I was young, they were new, fey, unlike anything I’d ever heard. “The Last Beat Of My Heart” was no exception. Spare, haunting–the kind of song that drove home the hurtiness and epic destructive/creative power of love. Like I said, heart into a thousand pieces:
There is such a chilling tension strung throughout the song. At times, eerie or dreamy silences. It works, and to this day is one of my favorite songs to beat myself up with when I need to feel feels.
Then DeVotchka came along. If you have never heard their music, you are missing out. This Colorado quartet has a direct line-in to All Of The Feels, at least for me. And they did a cover of Siouxsie’s already amazing “The Last Beat of My Heart.” Here is where it gets interesting…I love the original so hard, but I love DeVotchka’s cover even harder. Listen here:
The spirit of the original is there. Haunted, fervent. And now, with a new ache–wildly-strummed guitar, soaring strings…how Nick Urata’s voice even breaks a bit at one point…It takes everything I love about Siouxsie’s gorgeous original intensifies the effect. I don’t say this lightly.
“How in the world can I wish for this. . .”
Yeah. Just, yeah.
So, anyone reading this–are there any covers out there that, in your estimation, made a song EVEN BETTER? I’d love to hear from you!