Up and over we go…

Photography by gabriele chiapparini

You know I love a good cover and I also love Merge Records, so when SCORE! 20 years of Merge Records’ covers compilation of non-Merge artists covering their favourite songs from the Merge catalogue popped up, I was super-excited!

Now, for those not in-the-know (lardy knows that’s usually me), Merge Records is now twenty years old (awww… can almost drink!) and to commemorate & celebrate, they put together a pretty remarkable package. Check this out (click it for a bigger view):

That’s right, for a relatively low price of $200 you got a subscription to receive 14 mixtapes of Merge music (yay!), a Merge Remix CD (uh… yay?), the Merge Covers CD (woot! our feature today), a fancy artbook (man, I’d love that), a comedy CD (uh… huh?), and a genuine Merge box to put it all in…. AND other Merge swag they have laying about! So far, to my knowledge (which we know is not THAT extensive) two of the mixtapes have been sent out, the one’s curated by
Phil Morrison and REM’s Peter Buck.

Unfortunately, they closed the subscriptions. My sweet (and sexy AND cycling!) baby was going to hook me up for my birthday that’s coming down the pipe (god I’m getting old, found a giant (literally, about 5 inch long) grey hair the other day on the top of my head, just sitting there, staring at me), but alas, it twern’t meant to be….. It’s cool, Merge, you know… I mean, you probably just ran out of boxes and shit right? I mean, you know, it’s cool, psh, whatever and stuff and….


Phew. Feel better. Okay, where was we? Mergy Merge & covers! Hooray! So, this bad boy pops up (and it IS available for order), actually I think like a week or so ago, oh well, better late than never, and she patiently waited her turn in the queue. Now today, a wonderful wet & rainy ride in (where I kicked some serious ass), and now the clouds are gone, the air is cool, the sun is out, and it was time for SCORE! The Covers!

Apparently, this is the year of a good compilation! First we had Dark Was The Night, and now this? It covers the gamut, Apples in Stereo doing Neutral Milk Hotel (odd little cover, but really, how DO you cover NMH?), you got The Shins, Times New Viking, and even Broken Social Scene all stepping in! The results are spectacular! Yeah, I could’ve done without Les Savy Fav and maybe another song or two, but beyond that, it’s a sweet listen and sure to become handy on a few upcoming mixtapes (I’m sure).

So, I just picked some of my favourites to share, probably too many, but it was hard to choose. But really, give ’em a listen, then go buy a copy for yourself. Support Merge, support your independent record labels (and record stores), especially during this rather shitty economic time, because they deserve it. Otherwise, all we’d have is a bunch of crap like Fergie to listen to.


01 Quasi: “Beautiful Things” (3 Ds cover)
02 Les Savy Fav : “Precision Auto” ( Superchunk cover)
03 The Shins: “Plenty Is Never Enough” (Tenement Halls cover)
04 St. Vincent and the National: “Sleep All Summer” (Crooked Fingers cover)
05 Broken Social Scene: “Complications” (The Clean cover)
06 Ryan Adams: “Like a Fool” ( Superchunk cover)
07 Bright Eyes: “Papa Was a Rodeo” (Magnetic Fields cover)
08 Lavender Diamond: “New Ways of Living” (Destroyer cover)
09 The Apples in Stereo: “King of Carrot Flowers Pt. 3” (Neutral Milk Hotel cover)
10 Laura Cantrell: “Cowboy on the Moon” ( Lambchop cover)
11 Bill Callahan: “Santa Maria” (Versus cover)
12 Barbara Manning: “Through With People” ( Portastatic cover)
13 The Mountain Goats: “Drug Life” (East River Pipe cover)
14 The New Pornographers: “Don’t Destroy This Night” (Rock*A*Teens cover)
15 Tracey Thorn and Jens Lekman : “Yeah! Oh, Yeah!” (Magnetic Fields cover)
16 The Hive Dwellers: “My Noise” ( Superchunk cover)
17 Ted Leo & the Pharmacists: “The Numbered Head” (Robert Pollard cover)
18 Okkervil River: “All You Little Suckers” (East River Pipe cover)
19 Death Cab for Cutie: “Kicked In” ( Superchunk cover)
20 Times New Viking: “Neighborhood #1” (Arcade Fire cover)

Go show Merge Records ALL your love here now…

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