Symphonious Thursday #33

A little different approach this time. I’ve discovered something about myself and caught myself doing something I really enjoy without being fully aware of it. That thing is discovering covers of Where Is My Mind? by Pixies.
You guys already know I love the song. I think I mentioned it’s because of the simple riff throughout the song. It’s one of the few songs that can have the same simple melody almost entirely throughout the song without it getting boring, and apparently I’m not alone in thinking so.
This song has so many different covers. When covering a song it is so easy to just copy the original, especially when you already love the style of the original, but since the main focus of the song is on the melody itself and doesn’t take many liberties with fancy instruments or interrupting the main flow if the song it is very easy (and probably fun) to put your own style to it. Pixies already have a pretty distinct garage band style to their songs, not to mention this song, which makes it so fun to hear different versions of it.
I am quite open to different genres, even though I do have a very particular taste in music, which I thought would help me in this “quest”.

So to give you a taste I wanted to show you my top 10 most interesting and different, yet similar covers of this song, starting from “least original” to “most original” in my opinion. And remember that “original” doesn’t necessarily mean “good”.

Just a heads up: this list do contain A LOT of different styles and genres, and I can immediately promise you that not all of these will fall into taste. You might even find that this list was incorrectly organised, but keep in mind that this is my personal opinion. Also keep in mind that these are just the top 10. There are soooo many covers out there that I just couldn’t possibly put them all on this list.

WARNING! VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED: I guess I’m obliged to do this. Some of these videos (more specifically number 2) contains nudity and violence. So… if you don’t think you can handle that, don’t watch it. I’m not putting an age restriction on here, because people have different sensitivity levels. Some eight year old might find violence okay, but I know I couldn’t stand horror movies until I was 16, so… you’re reading and watching at your own risk. Don’t sue me.

10. Hello Bye Bye

Obviously on the list for it’s slow start and sudden change somewhere around the middle. Also great backing vocals gives this song a completely new and original sound. I think this version really highlights the familiar guitar riff by making it slower.

9.  I’m Not A Pilot

For this one I’m actually going to have to send you to a different WordPress site: http://creamcitysound.wordpress.com/2011/10/14/im-not-a-pilot-where-is-my-mind-pixies-cover/

I love the classical mix with rock style to this song. Other than that it pretty much bear a strong resemblance to the original, which is okay too. But thumbs up for originality!

8. Nada Surf

Not particularly different from the original, but it does put its own style on the song, and changes the general feel of it, and I like the subtle change they made towards the end. Slow, easy, simple and pays homage to the original.

7. Trampled By Turtles

Pulling a completely different style altogether, this band makes it sound like it’s a different song. Putting so much effort into making the song unique to their style.

6. Supervillains

I love how in the beginning it sounds almost identical to the original and then it hits you in the face with something completely new. This is the only reggae version of this song I’ve come by, and those who know me I like me some reggae now and then. I love the unique twist on this, but, and I hate to nitpick, but I don’t like what they’ve done to the riff. But points for originality.

5. Noah and the Whale (feat. The Vaccines)

A somewhat popular band, with a distinct style takes this song and gives it that distant, slow, calm style of their original songs. It’s the little things that counts, so try and pay attention to the details, because they’re the things that makes this version unique. (Jump to 1:12 for the actual song).

4. Total Warr

Not exactly my go-to music genre, but I find this version absolutely amazing. It manages to keep the essence of the original while still putting their own (completely different) style to it, which is the main reason I did this in the first place. There’s a difference between creating a remix and making a completely different version of something.

3. Frank Black Francis

Can you put the original composer of the song on a list for originality? Yeah, turns out Frank Black made another (solo) version of his most famous song, and it stands OUT! There’s even barely any melody in this one, and most of it’s just distorted sounds mixed with a bass that carries the original melody along in the traditional Kim Deal style. It is quite… strange.

2. Telepathic Teddy Bear

I love that this just isn’t an electronic/techno version of the song, but the style makes in nearly fantastical, mysterious and almost creepy. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but there’s something “off” about it, which makes it all the more enjoyable.

1. THePETEBOX

Very good mixing of different styles and genres. What makes this so unique and original is that while it still keeps the melody and the general tone of the original, it completely renewes it, and even uses the bare minimum of instruments (above none, obviously): only one. The rest is done by the artist’s mouth. I haven’t found any version that compares to this song’s originality.

All great covers of a few simple chords that never gets old.

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