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Indie Rock Post Punk Shoegaze Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Lush – Outdoor Miner

Day 15. Wire’s Colin Newman described the Lush version of their excellent Outdoor Miner as having “much confidence on show, plus they get the chorus right!” This is integral when you consider other covers of he same tune, like the one by Flying Saucer Attack. As much as I love it, the chorus sounds melodically miles away from this version or the original. He went on “It’s actually very satisfying to hear someone do a decent cover of a song you’ve written (and distressing to hear a bad one!).”

No blind spots in the leopard’s eyes
Can only help to jeopardize
The lives of lambs, the shepherd cries 

An outdoor life for a silverfish
Eternal dust less ticklish
Than the clean room, a houseguest’s wish

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide?
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide?
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth

Face worker, a serpentine miner
A roof falls, an under-liner
Of leaf structure, the egg timer

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide?
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide? 
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide? (he lies on his side)
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth (is he trying to hide?)

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide? (he lies on his side)
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth (is he trying to hide?)

He lies on his side, is he trying to hide? (he lies on his side)
In fact it’s the earth, which he’s known since birth (is he trying to hide?)

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Indie Rock Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): PUP – A.M. 180

Day 14. Some of you will know that Grandaddy are easily one of my top 5 favourite bands. I heard this new cover of their 1997 single, A.M. 180, on the recommendation of a friend & I have to say its a great version. I was vaguely aware of PUP before but hadn’t really listened to them much.

This version of A.M. 180 has a more lo-fi, fuzzy sound to the original, though is otherwise quite faithful. The big wall of sound towards the end shows that they understand the spirit of the song enough to deviate from it & without deviating from that spirit.

Don’t change your name
Keep it the same
For fear I may lose you again
I know you won’t
It’s just that I am unorganized
And I want to find you when
Something good happens

If you come down
We’ll go to town
I haven’t been there for years
But I’d be fine
Wasting our time
Not doing anything here
Just doing nothing

We’ll sit for days
And talk about things
Important to us like whatever
We’ll defuse bombs
Walk marathons
And take home whatever together

Whatever together
Whatever together
Whatever together
Whatever together
Whatever together

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Post Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): The Futureheads – Hounds Of Love

Day 13. The Futureheads cover of Kate Bush’s hit Hounds of Love is, in my opinion, one of those rare covers which far surpasses the original version. I expect to receive some flack for saying this, and hell, maybe I even deserve it.

The Futureheads take Bush’s wilfully weird Baroque Pop & transform it into exciting, harmony-laden, angular Post-Punk energy. Those amazing vocal harmonies are the reason I prefer it over the original I think.

“It’s in the trees! 
It’s coming!” 

When I was a child: 
Running in the night, 
Afraid of what might be 

Hiding in the dark, 
Hiding in the street, 
And of what was following me… 

Now hounds of love are hunting. 
I’ve always been a coward, 
And I don’t know what’s good for me. 

Here I go! 
It’s coming for me through the trees. 
Help me, someone! 
Help me, please! 

Take my shoes off, 
And throw them in the lake, 
And I’ll be 
Two steps on the water. 

I found a fox 
Caught by dogs. 
He let me take him in my hands. 

His little heart, 
It beats so fast, 
And I’m ashamed of running away 

From nothing real– 
I just can’t deal with this, 
But I’m still afraid to be there, 

Among your hounds of love, 
And feel your arms surround me. 
I’ve always been a coward, 
And never know what’s good for me. 

Oh, here I go! 
Don’t let me go! 
Hold me down! 
It’s coming for me through the trees. 
Help me, darling, 
Help me, please! 

Take my shoes off 
And throw them in the lake, 
And I’ll be 
Two steps on the water. 

I don’t know what’s good for me. 
I don’t know what’s good for me. 
I need your love love love love love, yeah! 
Your love! 

Take your shoes off 
And throw them in the lake! 

Do you know what I really need? 
Do you know what I really need? 
I need love love love love love, yeah!

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Indie Rock Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): The Breeders – Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Day 12. The Breeders version of The Beatles classic Happiness Is A Warm Gun is from their Steve Albini produced (despite being credited as engineer) debut Pod.

It’s a slow-burning, atmospheric version which seems to jut drip with tension in a way that the Beatles version doesn’t. The dynamic shifts from the quiet sections to the loud sections are incredible.

She’s not a girl who misses much 
Do-do-do, oh yeah 
She’s well acquainted 
With the touch of a velvet hand 
Like a lizard on a window pane 
Man in the crowd 
With the multicoloured mirrors 
On his hobnail boots 
Lying with his eyes 
While his hands are busy 
Working overtime 
The sole confession of his wife 
Which he ate and donated to the 
National Trust 
I need a fix cause I’m going down 
Down to the abyss that I’ve left up town 
I need a fix cause I’m going down 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Mother Superior jump the gun 
Happiness is a warm gun 
Happiness is a warm gun 
Happiness is a warm gun 
Happiness is a warm gun 
(Bang, bang, shoot, shoot) 
Josephine, do you think you are going bald? 
No. You’ve asked me that before and the answer was no then.

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Indie Rock Pop Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Ash – Cantina Band

Day 11. This is Ash’s great version of the famous piece of music (composed by John Williams) played by the Cantina band in the first Star Wars movie.

Ash deliver a fairly faithful version of the piece, livening it up with some sci-fi sound effects & a Pop Punk tempo for good measure. Star Wars always had a special place in Ash’s hearts. Their debut album, 1977 (the year of Star Wars’ release), opened with the classic (& terrifying) sound effect of a T.I.E. Fighter in flight.

Cantina Band is an instrumental, therefore it has no lyrics. In their place here’s a pic of the Cantina Band in action:

These guys

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Indie Rock Rock Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Manic Street Preachers – Theme From M*A*S*H (Suicide Is Painless)

Day 10. I’ve written a fair bit about Manic Street Preachers lately & will probably write more in the future. They’re one of my favourite bands from when I was a teenager & I’ve recently started listening to them a bit more again.

Their version of the theme tune from the classic Korean War drama M*A*S*H was recorded for a double a-side single with Fatima Mansions (who’s contribution was a cover of Bryan Adams’ (Everything I Do) I Do It For You. The single was a charity single with proceeds going to The Spastic Society (since renamed SCOPE).

Through early morning fog I see
Visions of the things to be
The pains that are withheld for me
I realise and I can see

That suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

The game of life is hard to play
I’m gonna lose it anyway
The losing card I’ll someday lay
So this is all I have to say

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

The sword of time will pierce our skins
It doesn’t hurt when it begins
But as it works its way on in
The pain grows stronger, watch it grin

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

A brave man once requested me
To answer questions that are key
Is it to be or not to be
And I replied oh why ask me?

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

And you can do the same thing if you please

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Grunge Reggae Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Little Roy – Very Ape

Day 9. Little Roy’s 2011 album Battle For Seattle consists exclusively of covers of Nirvana tunes in a deep, traditional Roots Reggae style. While I enjoyed the whole album, for me Very Ape was the surprise sleeper hit for me. The one song on the album which shouldn’t have worked but somehow ended up being the standout.

I am buried up to my neck in
Contradictionary lies
I take pride as the king of illiterature
I’m very ape and very nice

If you ever need anything please don’t hesitate
to ask someone else first
I’m too busy acting like I’m not naive.
I’ve seen it all I was here first

Out of the ground
Into the sky
Out of the sky
Into the dirt

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Dream Pop Indie Rock Shoegaze Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Dum Dum Girls – There Is A Light That Never Goes Out

Day 8. Where the original, by The Smiths, is a masterclass in jangly, smart Indie Pop, this version, by US Noise Pop band Dum Dum Girls (their name a double homage to the Vaselines album Dum Dum & Iggy Pop’s Dum Dum Boys) is pitched somewhere between the fuzzy rawness of Garage Rock & the immersive soundscaping of Shoegaze. It seems to work particularly well & the song is rounded off by this great fan-made video of the band on tour in Europe.

Take me out tonight 
Where there’s music and there’s people 
And they’re young and alive 
Driving in your car 
I never never want to go home 
Because I haven’t got one 
Anymore 

Take me out tonight 
Because I want to see people and I 
Want to see life 
Driving in your car 
Oh, please don’t drop me home 
Because it’s not my home, it’s their
Home, and I’m welcome no more 

And if a double-decker bus 
Crashes into us 
To die by your side 
Is such a heavenly way to die 
And if a ten-ton truck 
Kills the both of us 
To die by your side 
Well, the pleasure – the privilege is mine 

Take me out tonight 
Take me anywhere, I don’t care 
I don’t care, I don’t care 
And in the darkened underpass 
I thought oh God, my chance has come at last
(but then a strange fear gripped me and I 
Just couldn’t ask) 

Take me out tonight 
Oh, take me anywhere, I don’t care 
I don’t care, I don’t care 
Driving in your car 
I never never want to go home 
Because I haven’t got one, da… 
Oh, I haven’t got one 

And if a double-decker bus 
Crashes into us 
To die by your side 
Is such a heavenly way to die 
And if a ten-ton truck 
Kills the both of us 
To die by your side 
Well, the pleasure – the privilege is mine 

Oh, there is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out 
There is a light and it never goes out

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Art Indie Rock Punk Visual

Controversial Album Art: Sonic Youth – Goo

Sonic Youth’s major-label debut Goo is a solid, respected Indie Rock album. Sonically, it continues the bands evolution from No Wave inspired noiseniks to the tunefully dissonant elder statesmen (& woman) of Alternative Rock.

The cover art, by artist Raymond Pettibon (famous for record art for underground artists like Black Flag & Minutemen), depicted a black & white, ink line drawing of “two sunglasses wearing British mods” (wikipedia). A caption read : “I stole my sister’s boyfriend. It was all whirlwind heat, and flash. Within a week we killed my parents and hit the road.” This image has become embedded in the cultural consciousness via T-shirts, posters etc. There are hosts of tributes to it featuring characters from other media.

What I wasn’t aware of until very recently though (I’m probably the last to know) was who the image depicted. The drawing was modelled on a newspaper image of two witnesses in the Moors Murders trials. The witnesses pictured were actually Moors Murderer Myra Hindleys Sister & Brother -in-Law, David & Maureen smith, whose statements to the police eventually led to the arrest & incarceration of Hindley & her fellow murder Ian Brady. It’s an interesting choice of subject. I find it ties into similar themes to artwork like Jamie Reid’s Sex Pistols sleeves or the détournement of Gang Of Four’s Entertainment! It’s designed to either shock the viewer or to instil feelings of vague discomfort.

Jamie Reed’s God Save The Queen artwork & Gang Of Four’s Entertainment!:

Other examples of Raymond Pettibon’s sleeves:

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Indie Rock Post Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (Covers): Idlewild – I Found That Essence Rare

Day 7. I Found That Essence Rare was originally recorded by Post-Punk heavyweight’s Gang Of Four on their ’79 masterpiece Entertainment!

Idlewild’s version, recorded as a b-side for the ’02 single Live In A Hiding Place, is pretty faithful, but with much crisper production. Despite the straightforwardness of the cover, there’s still a great deal of Idlewild’s sound & charm in the sound.

Aim for the body rare, you’ll see it on TV
The worst thing in 1954 was the bikini
See the girl on the TV dressed in a bikini
She doesn’t think so but she’s dressed for the H-bomb
(For the H-bomb)

I found that essence rare, it’s what I looked for
I knew I’d get what I asked for

Aim for the country fair, you read it in the paper
The worst happens any week a scandal on the front page
See the happy pair smiling close like they are monkeys
They wouldn’t think so but they’re holding themselves down
(Hold themselves down)

I found that essence rare, it’s what I looked for
I knew I’d get what I asked forI found that essence rare, it’s what I looked for
I knew I’d get what I asked for

Aim for politician fair who’ll treat your vote hope well
The last thing they’ll ever do act in your interest
Look at the world through your Polaroid glasses
Things’ll look a whole lot better for the working classes
(Working classes)

I found that essence rare, it’s what I looked for
I knew I’d get what I asked forI found that essence rare, it’s what I looked for
I knew I’d get what I asked for

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