My sister received XM radio for her car as a Christmas gift. I drive her car to and from work everyday, and on Friday I was having a great time in horrible traffic, listening to XMU, the college/indie rock station. Then it all came to a grinding halt.
A song begins, and I think, “hey, I kind of recognize this…” I look down at the radio and realize it is “Ceremony,” as performed by a band called Xiu Xiu. If you are a huge Xiu Xiu fan, I apologize for the following, but I have never heard of them and will thus assume that no one else has, either (particularly none of our 5 fine readers – readership has increased!).
Immediately, I was reminded of what I think of as the Rules of Covers. They are simple, and there are only two. The first is that the cover differ somewhat significantly from the original. Not so much as to be unrecognizable, but professional musicians should not be releasing karaoke-d versions of one another’s songs.
The second rule is simple; do not completely destroy the charm of the original. Don’t change a wonderful little ditty to a crapfest, just because you can. (Here is one that, miraculously, fails on both counts).
Xiu Xiu totally took me up on the first rule. And utterly shat upon the second. The general idea I got from this song is that a bunch of slackers visited Chuck E. Cheese, and while playing arcade games created for five-year-olds, the most astute of the bunch noticed that one of the games featured a recurring audio that somewhat resembles the New Order song “Ceremony.”
They isolated the game’s audio (possibly they have a friend who works at Chuck E. Cheese and lets them in after hours), which unfortunately sounds like broken bagpipes. They played terrible industrial-type music over it. And I am referring to the noises the Sunset Island book series led me to believe constitute industrial music via the fictional band “Lord Whitehead and the Zit People” – namely, the beating of laundry room and kitchen appliances. Nothing so melodic as Nine Inch Nails.
After they settled upon this hodgepodge of garbage music, they hired a well-hung bull to violently rape the dude in the ass while he sings.
I did, however, enjoy my little fantasy that the dj at Fred (the new wave/alternative 80s station) might just give the dj at XMU a beating over this atrocity.
Update: Okay, so you can find it here. I just listened to it and the song is not as bad as I remember. I think I was a little off on the whole washer and dryer thing, but I have such fond memories of Lord Whitehead, I’m keeping it.
With this said, there is clearly no reason why this ever had to be done. Plus I think my description of they vocals was a bit too nice. Overall, my only kind thoughts were, “the drummer can keep a beat” and “hey, xylophones.” For anyone wondering: neither a respectable drummer nor the availability of xylophones constitutes a valid reason to destroy a good song. And, um, let’s mention the profile picture. The pervy dork at the local Holiday Inn is ready for the pool, guys.
I guess they're honest, though -- under "sounds like," they have listed only "Shit."
**** Totally gay to steal a borderline pretentious-sounding line from the song for the title, but I could not think of a stupid title. Sorry to be lame.