I’m really into covers right now. You might have seen my 10 Good Cover Songs post, in which I wrote about 10 of the best covers I’ve ever heard. So needless to say, when I saw that one of my favorite artists right now–Bastille–covered a song by one of my all-time favorite singers–Frank Ocean–I got giddy. That said, I gave it a listen and I’m a little underwhelmed. Bastille’s voice is too good for the way this turned out. The production is a little murky and really the only parts I really like are the background croons and the chorus. So yeah…it was a letdown. What are your thoughts? Leave a comment, you little biddies.
Bastille‘s “Pompeii” has been on repeat since I posted the original single a couple days ago. Now remixes are popping up, and I’m even finding myself replaying those. My favorite one yet is by Kat Krazy. It feels like it ties in a bit of Carly Rae Jepsen, with that addicting staccato string intro, and then it drops on you without expecting it. I’m not usually one for the big drops, but I’m really digging it in this remix. Bastille’s full album should be coming out in March, and until then, you little tadpoles across the pond can be lucky enough to catch a live show! If anybody over there wants to write a live review for me, let me know! I’d love to get a report back!
BONUS: Monsieur Adi Remix of Pompeii
Bastille has been one of my favorite artists in the past couple months, and when I heard his new song, Pompeii, today, I realized that he doesn’t seem to be trending downwards in any form. In fact, he keeps getting better. He first crossed my radar as somebody who did a lot of cool covers that sort of blended his own production and other songs together. Almost like an acoustic mashup, in a way. But he’s starting doing original production and, I can say with ease, that this one right here is incredible. The drums, the choral chanting, the explosive chorus…it’s pretty much everything I ask for in a song. My one fear is that it could be a little too poppy and could get picked up by radio stations or the like, but I’ll just selfishly cross my fingers that doesn’t happen (sorry, Bastille, not ready for that yet).
Bastille continues to amaze me. He’s taken mashups to a new dimension: he tends to recreate the mashups with his own talented vocals, making it more like a blend between a mashup and a cover, and at times he even pulls in other talent like he does in this track with Ella. Here, he’s blended TLC’s “Scrubs” with The xx’s “Angels.” At once it’s both shocking and stunning. I’ve had to do a double take and ask myself if I really just heard The xx and TLC at the same time…talk about my past and my present colliding. Wow.
Bonus: “Oh Holy Night” – Bastille
I think we take free music for granted. I mean, I’m pretty sure if you try hard enough you can find any song on the Internet for free. Most of the time, this is illegal and heavily frowned upon (by someone probably). Sometimes, however, artists give their music away for free legal download. While this generally isn’t out of sheer kindness (but instead a hope for more online popularity and future purchases), it still is nice and is something that shouldn’t go unacknowledged. The following artists recently dropped free projects that you should get acquainted with.
1. HAIM – Forever
These sisters are unique (they actually are sisters; I’m not weirdly patronizing them). With the three songs on Forever, they show off their indignant, retro flare and 90’s era sass. And I love it. I especially like how they sneaked “fucked” into “Better Off.” Check them out below. Seriously. Don’t be weird.
MP3: “Better Off” – HAIM
MP3: “Forever” – HAIM
Download ‘HAIM – Forever’ here.
2. Kendall Elijah – Eli Dynamite
It’s cool when young rappers like Kendall Elijah produce their own music. It makes their projects completely DIY, which gives the listener a unique introduction into the artist’s mind and imagination. What Kendall created on his Eli Dynamite EP plays kind of like a vintage movie soundtrack screwed into a hip hop album. I don’t know, maybe I’m crazy, but when I listen to it (like right now) I can see the movie play out in my mind. There’s something cinematic about this assortment of songs, and I really like it. Check out the EP below along with the music video for “The Wild.” [via Mostly Junk Food]
Download ‘Kendall Elijah – Eli Dynamite’ here.
3. BASTILLE – Other People’s Heartache
You may remember Bastille from the City High cover (“What Would You Do?”) that we posted last October. Just a few weeks ago, the band released a mixtape full of dramatic interpretations of modern indie classics. I think it’s really cool that Bastille chose to do this, appeasing fans with free new music while conjointly working on their original material (watch the music video for new song “Overjoyed” here). I just hope this inspires more and more indie bands to venture down the mixtape path.
Download ‘BASTILLE – Other People’s Heartache’ here.
I believe Ben Folds started this whole craze back in 2005 when he came out with his “Bitches Ain’t S**t” cover. Now, the YouTube and the Soundcloud are full of hipster bands trying to repeat Ben’s success by covering hip-hop’s most popular songs. Few of these covers are actually any good.
Cut to BASTILLE, a solo project turned band–a transformation lead singer Dan Smith attributes to the realization that he didn’t want Bastille to be “just a project.” The band has now taken some baby steps into the blog world, gaining fame from the first singles of their upcoming Laura Palmer EP and this cover of City High’s 2001 R&B hit.
Bonus! Check out this single entitled “FLAWS” off of their upcoming EP.