"We're The Pet Shop Boys" is so...meta. I don't even know where to start. Released by My Robot Friend in 2002 on the full length Hot Action, it's a song about the Pet Shop Boys, created almost entirely of Pet Shop Boys' own lyrics. As if that wasn't enough, the Pet Shop Boys themselves actually did a cover of it as a b-side to "Miracles". Oh and it doesn't stop there, either; Robbie Williams did a cover of the Pet Shop Boys cover of the song about the Pet Shop Boys. Where will the madness end!?
Done, of course, more in the Pet Shop Boys' style than his own, My Robot Friend is worth checking out for his other material as well. He relays tales of robot adventures amongst the humans set against exactly the sort of machine-made pop you'd expect from someone who does his live shows in a full body robot costume (do NOT miss his live show if you happen to come across one...think Captured By Robots, the sequel).
Tuesday. Tuesday...I never thought next Tuesday would ever happen. Way back in the wee days of the internet, I was on the Recoil official mailing list--back when that meant daily emails of conversing with other fans, and sometimes Alan Wilder himself, who is surprisingly approachable for someone who used to be a very key member in one of the most important electronic bands ever.
We begged, and begged, but he said it couldn't be done. Recoil could never tour, could never even do a live show... there were just
I guess Alan changed his mind, because he's on tour, and he's coming to
Though nearly impossible given all the options, I choose Recoil's first single and most well-known track, a cover of the
*trivia: Foetus also covered this song on Rife, ergo this track is often mistaken for a Foetus cover, not to say that Thirwell's version didn't influence this one.
Posted: October 23rd, 2010
at 1:38pm by qbot
Tagged with 1992, alan wilder, bloodline, british, bukka white, concerts, covers, curve, depeche mode, diamanda galas, douglas mccarthy, electro, foetus, goth, hepzibah sessa, hildia cambell, industrial, jim thirwell, liquid, maggie estep, moby, nicole blackman, nitzer ebb, plane crashes, recoil, samantha coerbell, sensational alex harvey band, siobhan lynch, speaking in tongues, synthpop, toni halliday
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The album Colin Meloy Sings Morrissey was The Decemberists' lead singer's first solo effort, released in 2005 and limited to 100 copies sold only on the accompanying tour, so we'll forgive you if you haven't heard of it.
The fact that Meloy finds Morrissey inspiring should be a surprise to no one at all. So much as a cursory listen to both singers' respective bands speaks for itself. But Meloy is far more than a cover artist, and The Decemberists are far more talented than to be tossed off as yet another indie-rock throwback to The Smiths. Though the storytelling lyrical style might be familiar, The Decemberists reach for a more folksy, Americana tone than their British predecessors, and this is where they shine. Meloy's covers are no different, but stripped down and backed merely by an acoustic guitar. Applied here to "I Know Very Well How I Got My Name", it challenges Morrissey's lyrics to stand on their own.
It seems like I've been posting a lot of covers lately. I hope you don't mind, but here's another, a bit inspired by
In a statement about their most recent album and criticism of its tone, Tom Smith wrote, "dark is interesting, dark is exciting, dark can be funny, there’s real life in the dark, real life IS dark...I am so fucking bored of people asking us why we’re so “dark”, or worse questioning our integrity for being this way, this is how we do it, it excites us to express ourselves like this, to be honest we don't even understand what the alternative is and the alternatives we can imagine are too boring for us to even consider". Did he just write the
Who better to rework a Cure song, then, than Editors? Smith invokes Ian Curtis to make Robert Smith's lyrics a little more paranoid, but I'm still not buying that he's really afraid of "the spider man". In fact, I suspect that he might just be inviting him over for dinner.
This track is taken from the
*I prefer the word "grufti" because it's much more inclusive than "goth". I encourage you to use it as well!
There, I said it. It feels good to get that out there. It's not just that it's the one of the most overplayed cheesy chunks of pop I've ever had to push the play button on, it's that it's an overplayed cheesy chunk of pop from a band that has literally hundreds of other more interesting songs in their repertoire. For crying out loud, this is Depeche Mode we're talking about here, not some one-hit wonder outfit whose entire career rests on having one memorable single released in 1985 or something. We have so many other options, let's use them.
That said, when I heard this Cph Jet cover, suddenly it changed my whole opinion. Just as even the most bland food becomes delicious when battered and deep fried, I will swallow a chiptune version of practically anything. Anders Remmer replaces Dave Gahan's adolescent-sounding vocals with adolescent-sounding robots and Vince Clarke's cheesy '80s synths with cheesy '80s 8-bit video game synths. Is this awesome? Yes, yes it is.
From the exceptionally good but difficult to find Danish Depeche Mode tribute album DMDK, also containing a terrific cover of "Strangelove" by Tiger Baby;
*Disclaimer: Opinions expressed in this post do not represent the opinions of the rest of the Atomic bloggers, probably most of the Neo staff, and definitely not Kamar, who LOVES this song, no matter how many times he's heard it.
I met this band ten years ago after I saw them opening up for Anything Box. Or it may have been Book of Love. I was instantly hooked on their synthpop sound with goth style vocals. I felt they could have been extremely successful, but for whatever reason, they parted ways after a series of shows and demos. I’m not sure what most of the members are doing these days, but their keyboardist Rubin has remixed numerous trance, synthpop, and EBM tracks (Iris, Icon of Coil, Syrian), and has
The two songs I’m posting are from a five track demo CD. The first is “Perfect Isolation”, one of my favorite synth songs of the last decade and one of the most heavily requested songs when I did Destination Unknown. The second is their cover of Anything Box’s “Carmen”. It adds a darker dimension to the song without destroying the elements that made the original a classic.
What I love about the Handsome Devilz is that they are the least pretentious musicians I have ever met. They know they’re talented and have had success in other bands playing their own music, but they absolutely love The Smiths and Morrissey and dedicate a night a month covering their heroes at the Abbey Pub. Lisa and I are big fans of their night “The Queen Is Dead” and look forward to hosting their after show party on the last Thursday of every month. If you go to the show this week, remember that Atomic is free with a wristband or ticket stub from the Abbey and you’ll get to hear Guest DJ Arturo spin a Smiths/Morrissey set!
Somewhere back in the '90s, I drug a handful of friends to a Placebo show in St. Louis. Having only ever heard their solitary US hit "Pure Morning", they were skeptical, and I can hardly blame them. I don't much care for that song; to me it is to Placebo what "Vaseline" is to Flaming Lips fans: an annoyance that requires so many "no but really, their other stuff is so much more than that" explanations.
I'm proud to say that my friends left the show that night as Placebo fans, and henceforth trusted my judgement about these sorts of things.
Despite the little airplay they get here in the States, thankfully they've attracted enough of a cult following to tour here every few years. I always go see them, and -I can't say this about too many bands- they've always gotten better. One of the things one comes to expect from their encores is a cover of someone who has influenced them; I'm quite fond of what they've done to The Pixies and Kate Bush. But since this week we are providing the afterparty for The Queen Is Dead (details to your right), it seemed more fitting to post their rocked-out version of The Smiths' classic "Bigmouth Strikes Again" from their collection of covers Sleeping With Ghosts. Though not necessarily as good or true to the original, their take on it is worth noting.