Monday, March 22, 2004

Deliver me from nowhere... 

I've just been listening to the Cowboy Junkies' version of Springsteen's "State Trooper" for the first time, and rate it very highly. It captures all the desolation of the original, with more menace in the bassline and some really silky throwaway-style vocals. Now it would take me a lot to prefer a cover version to the original of a song, but this gets close to ranking equal (Nebraska being easily my favourite Springsteen album, and one of my favourite albums of all time, this takes a lot).

Usually everyone hates cover versions, and with some right - just witness most pop bands' entire outputs. But I was wondering whether anyone here could think of some cover songs which beat the originals. Hendrix's version of "All Along The Watchtower" is an easy one for me; there's a beautiful version of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction", removing the chorus and riff entirely, done by Cat Power; and Ryan Adams' 2001-era live version of "Wonderwall" just about rescued that song from the mire it was born in. But I'm guessing there are lots of others...

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