Punk Goes Pop has always been a pretty awesome compilation series. From All Time Low covering Rihanna‘s ‘Umbrella’ to, going right back into the archives, Rufio’s stunning version of Madonna’s ‘Like A Prayer’, it’s provided some great entertainment and supplied rock clubs up and down the country with a ton of dance floor bangers. It’s been a series I’ve always closely followed and hearing bands put their own spin on some different genres makes it the alternative scenes equivalent of BBC’s Live Lounge.
Volume 6 is about to hit our shelves and today saw the video release of the albums opening track, Paramore’s ‘Aint It Fun’ covered by Tyler Carter of Issues. Tyler has done a great job at covering the track but really that is where my enthusiasm for it ends. It’s purely a straight cover. There is no mixing it up, no “making it your own”, it’s just the same as the original just with Tyler Carter singing. Unless I was a extremely hardcore fan of Tyler I can’t see a reason to need to play it again and that’s where the problem lies.
It made me think about cover versions in general and what makes a good cover. Anyone can straight out copy a track, well unless you’re trying to cover Dillinger Escape Plan (in that case; good luck…you will need it!), but what makes a good cover version for me is to make it your own. Put your stamp on it! We have heard the original, why would we need another version that’s basically the same? For example, a cover I absolutely love is by a lesser known electronic band by the name of BoxBoxBox who cover Andrew WK’s ‘I Get Wet’. You couldn’t get a more different version. It’s unique, it’s exciting and most of all it brings a whole new life to the track. Surely that’s what a cover should do?
Also, as an extra thought, are Paramore suddenly a pop band? Fair enough, the track is quite “poppy” but covering a Paramore track for a compilation where “punk” bands cover “pop” bands doesn’t seem to work. It would be like having Yellowcard cover “All The Small Things”; fun but a bit pointless. Unless of course they put their own unique spin on it (see rest of article!).
At least I know Upon A Burning Body and Ice T doing “Turn Down For What” is going to be a bit special.
….I guess he could have covered it just for fun? Yeah, that’s probably it!