Sunday, June 10, 2007

Discovered Uncovered #2 (Turn Me On Dead Man)

Wild Honey Pie - The Pixies

Eleanor Rigby - Aretha Franklin

Tomorrow Never Knows - Jad Fair & Daniel Johnston

Happiness Is A Warm Gun - The Breeders

The theme of this second installment of Transmissions From Wintermute’s cover series is Beatles songs. In their short eight years of active time on the pop landscape, The Fab Four released 12 albums and 12 Eps, and numerous volumes of repackeged material. All this adds up to a fuckload of songs for the past, present and future musical world to covet, cover and cannibalize until eternity. But other than just sheer volume, what’s the appeal of covering Beatles songs? The instant recognition? The communion or confrontation with a legacy? The multiple haircuts and facial hair stylings? What sticks out to me most is the malleability of their brilliant pop structures, the hooks that lend themselves to endless reinterpretations without loosing their catchiness. Of course they’re not always easy to pull off.

The above artists, though, definitely do so with these strange and divergent covers which hold on to the original songs’ inescapable pop awesomeness.

Any suggestions for other good Beatle covers out there?



Blogger Hannah said...

I know what Beatles covers not to listen to...
I don't know if you've ever heard the Rutles. They do sort of covers, sort of spoofs, and sort of just straight up plagiarizing the Beatles' style, and maybe this is just me, but to me, none of it is good or funny or insightful.
That Happiness Is A Warm Gun cover is fucking awesome.

June 10, 2007 4:10 AM  
Blogger Laz said...

"Fits all head sizes" hahahahaa.... also, Hannah, I agree, the Happiness is a Warm gun-one is pretty amazing. It's funny though, how you suddenly notice the american accent just because it's a Beatles-song.

June 10, 2007 11:43 AM  
Blogger Mazur said...

Isn't the Rutles made up of dudes from Monty Python?
Are you shit-talking Monty Python?

Maybe it's a British-only thing.

June 10, 2007 9:11 PM  
Blogger DJ said...

Yeah, I thought I was going to be original by saying the Breeders cover is awesome, but I guess it's unanimous.
I remember hearing a track where someone layered every cover of Yesterday (it's the most covered song of all time) ever done over each other. It sounded like when an orchestra tunes before a performance, basically a gigantic 3 minute sigh.

June 12, 2007 6:22 PM  
Blogger Hannah said...

I am totally shit-talking Monty Python.
You wanna fight about it?

June 15, 2007 3:42 AM  
Blogger Mazur said...


June 16, 2007 9:06 PM  
Blogger Gaby said...

Mojo Magazine recently put out its CD with a completely covered Sgt Pepper - I don't know if it's been mentioned...

June 17, 2007 4:28 AM  
Blogger Mazur said...

Wow, that sounds really cool. Is it any good?

June 18, 2007 10:54 PM  
Blogger Grant Miller said...

Damn. I used to have a list of bands I'd like to see cover specific Beatles songs. The only one I remember is I'd love to see Dinosaur Jr. do "I'm Looking Through You" off "Rubber Soul." My friends and I always sat around and thought of bands that should cover Beatles songs.

I've got Sonic Youth's cover of "Within Without You." Possibly the best Beatles cover ever. On my old computer, I have about 80 various cover Beatle songs. I think I have Pavement performing "Something" off "Abbey Road."

Additionally, I can't listen to the Pixies without thinking which Beatle song they're kind of ripping off.

August 10, 2007 10:41 PM  
Blogger Grant Miller said...

Oh yeah. The Fall covered "Day in the Life." If any of you hipsters have it, I will pay good money for it. I've looked for it on MP3 or CD since the beginning of time.

August 14, 2007 10:34 PM  
Blogger Grant Miller said...

And, allegedly, Sonic Youth covered the entire "White Album" but never released it. As far as I know, only "Back in the USSR" exists.

August 14, 2007 10:35 PM  
Blogger Mazur said...

Wow Grant Miller. You are clearly the guy to talk to about Beatles covers. I'd love to hear some of the creme if you'd care to email me any:

Maybe we could do a G. Miller Beatles themed Discovered Uncovered post or something...

What is the Sonic's Back in the USSR off of? Because I really really want it.

September 18, 2007 6:14 PM  
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