So MSNBC just did an article on the "Top Timeless Cover Songs" for some reason. To be honest, I was a little afraid to look at the list for fear that they would include some novelty pop bullshit because it's "fun" or some such shit, but they actually compiled a fairly decent list. I don't know who exactly "they" are, but whoever it is won me over with the inclusion of Siouxie & the Banshees' cover of "Dear Prudence" and Satan and Adam's version of "Ode to Billy Joe." What WERE they throwing off the bridge in that song anyway? Let's hope it's Tori Amos. Because as the article so rightly observes, "Some of our favorite songs can be turned ugly in the wrong hands, or more specifically, vocal cords [sic]. Some people who cover classics without the proper expertise to do them justice should probably be locked in a small room with Connie Chung and a piano as punishment."
Yeah, I'm not sure what that means either, but I found the reference to "piano as punishment" oddly prophetic, because in my estimation, the worst cover song of all time EVER is Tori Amos' version of "Smells Like Teen Spirit." Have you heard this godawful shit? If you haven't, don't download it or anything (downloading music is stealing, by the way) because this virus cannot be spread any more than it already has been. Never in my life have my ears been assaulted with such a defilement. Who does this bitch think she is? I don't care if Tori singlehandedly saves the whales; nothing can redeem her in my eyes, thanks solely to this abomination. I'd like to see anyone justify that pounding away on a harpsichord and practically yodeling a grunge anthem (by NIRVANA, no less) IN ALL SERIOUSNESS is a good idea by any stretch of the imagination; you simply can't. It's like trying to argue that it's a good idea to sit on a grizzly bear's lap and give it a great big hug for a fun camping trip photo op—don't expect everything to not go horribly, gruesomely awry. If this song had been recorded before Kurt's death, then at least we would have an explaination for his suicide.
I know this sounds a little dramatic and harsh, but so is the song. And I am also aware that I'm totally setting myself up to be attacked by rabid Tori fans who are pissed off that I am making fun of their little faerie princess. (Oh, who am I kidding? No one reads this blog! So if I get any comments from people other than my three regular readers then I will pee my pants with excitement.) But I really don't care. Sing along: nothing can stop me now, 'cause I don't care anymore! Bad music makes me angry, but music on this level of bad makes me think I might have actually died and am now residing in whichever circle of hell is reserved for music snobs.
While the majority of my bad cover bile is reserved for this mess, it is not my only target. Sheryl Crow should be executed for what she did to "Sweet Child O' Mine" and "D'Yer M'aker." And there is a whole special category of hatred set aside specifically for the covers done by the idjits of pop, like those ridiculous Duff sisters singing "Our Lips Our Sealed" (does that song still supposedly mean what it supposedly meant when it first came out?) and—god help us—"My Generation", Simpson skanking up "These Boots Are Made For Walkin'" and Mandy Moore doing a whole horrible album of cover songs. "Satisfaction" and "I Love Rock N' Roll" sound better when drunks sing them on karaoke than when Britney spews them out. And I'm not even going to mention Celine Dion screetching "Shook Me All Night Long" at one of those Divas concerts. That made the baby Jesus vomit.
Not that you care, but covers that I can actually get behind include Lemmy and Wendy O. Williams dueting on "Stand By Your Man", H.I.M's version of Chris Isaac's "Wicked Game" (of course), Jane's Addiction's medley of "Rock n' Roll/Sympathy", Nirvana's unplugged renditions of "Oh Me" and "Where Did You Sleep Last Night", Johnny Cash's "Hurt" and "Rusty Cage" and Nine Inch Nails doing "Dead Souls." Of course, these songs are all by artists that I actually like, so maybe these songs really aren't that great...what do I know?
Well, since I think I know everything, I am going to go so far to say that even Limp Bizkit covering The Who is better than this Tori Amos piss. Go ahead and lob insults my way, but someone has to say it: Tori blows, simply because of this. So next June 3, I'm hoping that Billy Joe McAllister throws Tori's frigging piano off the Tallahatchie Bridge taking that atrocious song with it. Skateboarding may not be a crime, but bad covers should be.