Top Cover Songs of 2011

Top Cover Songs of 2011
Between label-issued releases and the massive influx of self-released Bandcamp jams, there's entirely too much new music to take in at once. Occasionally, we'd rather just settle down to some familiar sounds. Splitting the difference is the covers racket, which can freshen up an old favourite. Whether framed as faithful renditions, or blowing up the spot with an unorthodox interpretation, these are a few of the redos we kept on repeat this year.

Top Cover Songs of 2011:

5. Beach Fossils "Plastic Flowers" (The Wake)

Beach Fossils didn't exactly make their take on '80s English outfit the Wake's "Plastic Flowers" their own (it pretty well follows the jangly guitars and watery bass template of its predecessor). However, if anything, the buzz-worthy Brooklyn band's faithful remake likely had more than a few new jacks checking out the relatively unsung back catalogue of their British post-punk heroes.

4. Flaming Lips "Smothered In Hugs" (Guided By Voices)

Considering the Flaming Lips prepped a mammoth 24-hour number of their own this year, it's not entirely shocking that they tacked another couple of minutes onto their take of this Bee Thousand-era Guided By Voices cut. It never drags, though, with Wayne Coyne and co. stylishly stepping away from the distortion of the garagey original to craft this swirling, though slightly out-of-tune, psychedelic lullaby.

Flaming Lips Smothered In Hugs by Pretty Much Amazing

3. Siskiyou "Revolution Blues" (Neil Young)

If you consider Neil Young's unique warble way too off the wall for the tastes, you might want to skip out on West Coast folk experimentalists Siskiyou's take on his "Revolution Blues." The stunningly minimalist and rootsy version strays from the song's country-funk origins, and Colin Huebert trumps Shakey's awkward vibrato, coming off like a croaky backwoods lush. Fantastic, but an acquired taste, for sure.