Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Posted by Frank
Chicago rock mainstays Local H are getting ready to drop a new EP of cover songs, Local H's Awesome Mix Tape, on October 19. To gear up, frontman Scott Lucas has offered up some track-by-track commentary on each of the seven tracks, which take on TV on the Radio, Pink Floyd, Concrete Blonde and more.
"The best covers are the ones that deconstruct and reinvent the original songs. These are NOT the best covers -- these are just songs that we love to play," Lucas said in a press e-mail. "We just attacked the songs with as much enthusiasm and energy as we could muster. Almost as if we could transform them into our own songs through sheer will power and dumb brute force. It's always worth a try." Here's his track rundown:
Wolf Like Me (TV on the Radio) - "We've been playing this song pretty regularly for years now. Ever since Return to Cookie Mountain first leaked all over the internet. It's possible that we've been playing it longer than TV on the Radio, even. At any rate, I think it's the best rock song of the last ten years."
Joey (Concrete Blonde) - "This is the best alcoholic love song ever. The first time I ever played this song was in '05 -- it was an acoustic show opening for Tommy Stinson. I didn't know what key to play it in --Concrete Blonde plays it in G. I was going to wuss out and play it in C, but then I just decided to go for it and do it in G. I couldn't believe that I got anywhere near to pulling it off."
Puss (The Jesus Lizard) - "This was a tough one. We love The Jesus Lizard. And we wanted to do one of their songs, BUT how do you out-Yow David Yow? It can't be done. What was I gonna do? Out-snarl him? Put down a sicker performance? Nope. So I went the other way: a smooth falsetto. I thought I was doing my best sweet soul brother vocal, but it ended up sounding more Queens of the Stone Temple (Axl) Rose. Which, I suppose, actually IS sicker."
Spider Bite (Winnebago Deal) - "We met Winnebago Deal in Seattle. They were recording with Jack Endino. We've been fans ever since. The main riff is nearly impossible for me to play, which is probably why we opted to play it on a tiny DEVO keyboard. I love this song."
Blood Stains (Agent Orange) - "Brian and I used to argue about whether this song was called 'Blood Stains' or 'Speed Kills.' And, as is usually the case, one of us won. Been playing this one since '07."
Time (Pink Floyd) - "This one goes all the way back to 2002, on the Here Comes the Zoo tour. I've been an absolute Pink Floyd freak my whole life. We tried to smear this up My Bloody Valentine style. It's kind of an endurance test. Chinese guitar torture. A real room clearer."
For Lovers (Wolfman) - "We first played this one five years ago at a New Year's Eve show. A perfect time to play it. It reminds me of a lost James Bond theme -- not lyrically or anything. It's just so goddamn romantic."