Spring cleaning spurred on a right musical realisation, one of the most memorable guitar-based songs of 2017 in the UK was a cover from 1969.
Elbow’s cover of Golden Slumbers for the John Lewis Christmas advert was seen by millions, and grand enough to make their Best Of album.
It is a grand cover, but everyone covers The Beatles. I’m Alex Greensmith, host of Alex G and Charlotte C, and these are my Top 5 Cover Songs of 2017.
5. Archie, Marry Me – Flyte
Video Credit: Ellie Taylor
Out of the blue, when supporting The Lemon Twigs, London’s Flyte whipped out a cover of Alvvays’ Archie Marry Me, a song by one of my own favourite bands, completely revamped with four-part male harmonies.
From then, I wished I’d have known of this song, and this band earlier.
You’d think removing instruments from a cover version would make a colder sound, but seeing it live was captivating.
The warmth of the track with headphones on in the context of closing their stellar debut album certainly exemplified the tracks power.
4. Interesting Drug – OK Go
Chicago power pop quarter OK Go are well-known for their music videos. But the treadmill-hopping, zero-gravity flying rockers caused a stir in January 2017 for their cover of Morrisey’s Interesting Drug.
Taking on a more slow, sombre sound foreboding their thoughts on the Presidency of Donald Trump – the Trump mockery in its video distracts from its sonically superb sound.
3. Basket Case – Bastille
While Craig David is the most recent addition to Bastille collaborations, notably sliding under the radar was being featured in The Tick.
The Amazon Prime show, starring Brit Peter Serafinowicz, featured a cover of Green Day’s Dookie classic Green Day.
Frontman Dan Smith said to NME, ““We’re massive Green Day fans and so tried to make a version of ‘Basket Case’ that was totally different to the original whilst still honouring what an awesome tune it is.”
Green Day themselves even approved of the Eleanor Rigby and film-score influenced interpretation.
2. St. Jimmy – Milk Teeth
Stroud punk-rockers Milk Teeth have had a sweet 2017, supporting Good Charlotte and heading on their own headline tour – both in Nottingham.
2018 brings supporting Enter Shikari and teases of a new release following a year where they were released on three EPs.
The first was their label’s Green Day homage “Not Your American Idiots”.
Bringing the American Idiot album track St. Jimmy a new lease of life in our politically turbulent times was simultaneously a reminder of the dying concept album. It shreds as well.
1. This Must Be the Place – Sure Sure
I believe most songs on this list aim to be as good as the original, but none truly are except this effort from alt American four-piece Sure Sure.
This Must Be The Place takes the Talking Heads original, embraces their frontmans deeper vocals to make David Byrne’s honest love song to sound more humble.
An experimental pop band that exuberates confidence by sound and by singles, by releasing a cover to promote their debut album has not only widened their fanbase, but lead them to by my pick for the best song of 2017. Sure Sure’s debut self-titled album is out now.
A playlist of the original songs featured, as well as their originals can be found here.
Alex G plays more than just Green Day covers every Monday 4-6pm with Charlotte Crowther on Alex G and Charlotte C, here on Fly FM.