Covers that are better than the original

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As the topic says, what are some cover versions of songs that are better than the original song.

I'll start wtih the Robyn Adele Anderson version of numb

Then lets do some Within Temptation doing a over of Radioactive

And finish with a RichaardEB metal cover of Bad Apple!!

I think the best covers are the ones that are transformative in nature, and not just in style or sound. Hence:


A cliched choice perhaps but while Reznor's original is great, the song's lyrics take on a completely new and poignant meaning when sung by Cash, a visibly and audibly frail old man on his way out who is acutely aware of that fact.

Charly Garcia's 1990 rendition of The Byrds' 1965 "I'll Feel a Whole Lot Better".

Harry Nilsson's version of Fred Neil's "Everybody's Talkin'". Its almost certainly the most widely recognised version.

Chimpzy:
snip

Oh yeah, this is a popular one right here. I enjoy both versions of this, but it's a good showing of a theme change as well as style change.

First choice and only choice for now, Earfquake by Tyler the Creator, covered by Galleons. The original is OK, this one just has more energy to it my mind. Plus it's in a genre I enjoy.

Chimpzy:
I think the best covers are the ones that are transformative in nature, and not just in style or sound. Hence:


A cliched choice perhaps but while Reznor's original is great, the song's lyrics take on a completely new and poignant meaning when sung by Cash, a visibly and audibly frail old man on his way out who is acutely aware of that fact.

+1

Another transformative one, and a tribute to Bennington

Happy but sounding exactly like John Butler. Sorry, it takes a minute to get started

Kasabian going Insane

I'll go a weirder route and suggest Personal Jesus as covered by Marilyn Manson

He takes a song that's generally pretty good, with a side of "I'm a sex symbol", and takes it a couple steps further, which seems to be all that needed to happen for it to go to creepy town.

Duran Duran's Ordinary World done by The Hit House

Subhuman, Little V version.

In The Bar (Streets of Rage Remake)

Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush is, secretly, a brilliant punk rock anthem.

09philj:
Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush is, secretly, a brilliant punk rock anthem.

Thats pretty good but I think this is a better cover of it.

It needs that Jimmy Urine touch.

How is there no mention of All Along the Watchtower yet? Jimi's version is one of the best songs ever and it's a cover.

VS

I always thought the cover of The Boys of Summer by the Ataris was waay more energetic and manic than the original by Henley. The original is still a great song, though.

...

When I listen to Set the World On Fire by Fun, I add in the tune from The Blood Of Cu Chulainn (2010) during the refrain. It (and the rum, obviously,) makes me feel immortal.

I like to dance when drinking.

It's the bulk of my exercise.

Down with the Sickness - Richard Cheese

Somebody That I Used to Know - Walk off the Earth

Bohemian Rhapsody - Weird Al Yankovic


Okay, maybe not but I love it anyway!

Here's a few more:

Scott Pilgrim's version of Black Sheep:

Postmodern Jukebox has, obviously, quite a few great covers, my favorite is easily Haley Reinhart's Creep:

Shiina Ringo does an amazing job transforming The Beatles 'Yer Blues' akin to what Jimi did with All Along the Watchertower:
https://mp3.pm/song/21855959/Shiina_Ringo_-_Yer_Blues_The_Beatles_Cover/

I really like this Doctor Who cover of Don't Stop Me Now:

And, of course, Led Zeppelin has a bunch of amazing "covers".

It's hard to say what is and isn't a cover sometimes, but these are the ones I know.

And I don't know if this counts, but I'll add it anyway.
More of a remix maybe..

I think the Alien Ant Farm cover of 'Smooth Criminal' is far superior to the original

And the metal covers done by Leo Moracchioli of Frog Leap Studios on youtube https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=frog+leap+studios are better than the originals.
The man made 'Barbie Girl' not only tolerable, but enjoyable.

Phoenixmgs:
How is there no mention of All Along the Watchtower yet? Jimi's version is one of the best songs ever and it's a cover.

VS

Clearly that's the wrong answer. This is the best version. Intro goes for 2.5 mins. But I like the intro. I will say that the titular sentence in this version is worse

OT: I also remembered this one. Also very different from the original

Hm, transformative is best when provided, but no hard lines drawn if it done good enough. There's probably too many to pick from Postmodern Jukebox, as adding skilled soul and/or jazz kinda makes music of any quality good and any already good music marginally better.

(Am counting this as better than original solely because Mario cannot tapdance, the uncultured swine!

-

Sorry, moving on...a kinda DnB cover of Foo Fighters;

A kinda triphop cover of Joy Division;

Chill The Prodigy cover, perhaps only better cause have heard the original so many times anything fresh about it is good enough

Brass Against (the machine) wake up, not sure if better or just different yet. Know your enemy is also alright

The Pot, Toolio

Honourable mentions to others already mentioned, as well as a few Marilyn Manson tracks, some other more popular choices like Jeff Buckley, Cash etc. List is already too long damnit

trunkage:

Phoenixmgs:
How is there no mention of All Along the Watchtower yet? Jimi's version is one of the best songs ever and it's a cover.

VS

Clearly that's the wrong answer. This is the best version. Intro goes for 2.5 mins. But I like the intro. I will say that the titular sentence in this version is worse

Good gravy I cannot disagree more strongly with that All Along the Watchtower cover.

I don't know if this song was a hit for Bryan Adams, but its just....awkward sounding. To slow in the tempo, the lyrical delivery is stilted a little.

Okay I'll dock a point because of just how many insufferably generic Anime AMVs this song aided in the creation of but I cannot truly blame the artist for blasphemies committed by the listeners. This is honestly the more natural sounding rendition of the song, hell when I first heard it I thought it was DJ Sammy's song.

Worgen:
I'll start wtih the Robyn Adele Anderson version of numb

Not a huge Linkin Park fan, and I usually don't bother commenting when I see something like this, but I am truly in awe of how absolutely fuckin' horrible this was. How can anyone prefer this to the original is beyond me. It's boring, lazy and pathetic in every way imaginable. Completely misses the point of the original. All they did was sing a boring version of the song. No effort whatsoever into crafting something unique. Any talentless hack with rudimentary musical skills could have accomplished the same thing.

I always thought that Bruce Springsteen's "Jersey Girl" was superior to Tom Waits' original:

No such list would be complete without Jimmy Hendrix's version of "All along the watchtower". It's so famous, most people don't even know that it's originally Bob Dylan's song:

Phoenixmgs:
How is there no mention of All Along the Watchtower yet? Jimi's version is one of the best songs ever and it's a cover.

VS

Ah hell, I got ninja'd!

But as much as I love Hendrix, possibly the best cover/adaptation of any song ever is Sinead O'Connor's rendition of Nothing Compares 2U. Original version is by Prince.

At this point, its probably cheating to bringing up Johnny Cash's take on Hurt or Disturb's Sound of Silence. The former is hauntingingly powerful, and a song that only a life as experienced as Mr. Cash's could just make you feel the feels for. THe latter also immensely potent in its power, both audio and the visuals in the music video. However that one also has double duty of trying to live up to if not surpass the originals glory and and it did just that. My Mom hates heavy metal and she likes the Disturb verstion ALOT.

I am partial to the Lacuna Coil covers of Depechmode's Enjoy the Silence

And their cover of REM's Losing My Religion

and Earlyrise's take on Korn's Narcissistic canible.

saint of m:
THe latter also immensely potent in its power, both audio and the visuals in the music video. However that one also has double duty of trying to live up to if not surpass the originals glory and and it did just that. My Mom hates heavy metal and she likes the Disturb verstion ALOT.

Surpasses Simon & Garfunkel? That's mad, I couldn't disagree more emphatically. I like the Disturbed version a great deal, but it's nowhere near as haunting, melodic, or touching as the version on "Sounds of Silence".

(I don't say "the original" above, of course, because the original original version is that on "Wednesday Morning 3am", which isn't quite as good for lacking most of the guitar).

OT: Gary Jules' version of Mad World (originally by Tears for Fears).

Adam Jensen:
No such list would be complete without Jimmy Hendrix's version of "All along the watchtower". It's so famous, most people don't even know that it's originally Bob Dylan's song:

I'd say quite a few Dylan cover ended up arguably becoming more famous than his original version. All Along The Watchtower, obviously, but there's also these:




I suppose that's only inevitable when you're the simple most covered artist in the world, after The Beatles (and technically traditional folk, but that's not just one artist/band, is it?)

I'm rather partial to the Sabaton version of Twilight Of The Thunder God, though what I really like is the combination of the cover and the original Amon Amarth version. Their cover of All Guns Blazing is pretty solid too, but nothing and I mean nothing competes with the original. Painkiller is a goddamn masterpiece beginning to end.

And while it's not too different from the original Cactus version, Clutch nails it (as always) with Evil.

This one's just kind of hilarious to be honest, though I'm not sure if "better" is the exact word I'd use.

And finally, if we count random versions from Youtube, this one is excellent and I'm absolutely in love with her voice.

While I still enjoy the original version, I feel like this cover does a better job of supporting the lyrics. The original sounds somewhat disappointed in the state of affairs, while this cover is flat-out angry about it.

thebobmaster:
While I still enjoy the original version, I feel like this cover does a better job of supporting the lyrics. The original sounds somewhat disappointed in the state of affairs, while this cover is flat-out angry about it.

You missed the best part about that, the Disturbed version comes with the edgy but great music video that I'm 99% sure was animated by the same guy (Todd McFarlane?) who did the '90s animated Batman series and the undeniably excellent video for Pearl Jam's "Do The Evolution".

Chimpzy:

A cliched choice perhaps but while Reznor's original is great, the song's lyrics take on a completely new and poignant meaning when sung by Cash, a visibly and audibly frail old man on his way out who is acutely aware of that fact.

Cliched perhaps, but only because it's so incredibly true that it's better than the original. Although I've noticed that seems to really annoy some NIN fans.

I much prefer this...

To any of the early versions (Elvis's being the most famous), although this perhaps reflects my being a child of the 80s, liking lots of electronic music. The PSBs were at their peak at the time, which helps.

Ravinoff:
You missed the best part about that, the Disturbed version comes with the edgy but great music video that I'm 99% sure was animated by the same guy (Todd McFarlane?) who did the '90s animated Batman series and the undeniably excellent video for Pearl Jam's "Do The Evolution".

Yes on Todd McFarlane and the Pearl Jam video. No on BtAS, McFarlane had nothing to do with that. Tho he did work as an artist on Batman and Spider-Man comics, McFarlane is best known for Spawn (which did also get an animated series).

Agema:
Cliched perhaps, but only because it's so incredibly true that it's better than the original. Although I've noticed that seems to really annoy some NIN fans.

Reznor himself seems to agree tho. He's apparently gone on record saying the song "isn't mine anymore".

Lunatica's cover of Ultravox's hymn

Adam Jensen:

Not a huge Linkin Park fan, and I usually don't bother commenting when I see something like this, but I am truly in awe of how absolutely fuckin' horrible this was. How can anyone prefer this to the original is beyond me. It's boring, lazy and pathetic in every way imaginable. Completely misses the point of the original. All they did was sing a boring version of the song. No effort whatsoever into crafting something unique. Any talentless hack with rudimentary musical skills could have accomplished the same thing.

Her version felt very wrong to me, but I thought that might have been because I was a big Linkin Park fan when the first came out (Meteora was the first CD I ever bought) and Numb was one of my favorite songs. I'm glad to see that it was not a personal bias (or not just a personal bias) that made me dislike it.

'Waiting For The End' cover done by Chase Holfelder with Linney (Don't know her last name), made in tribute to Chester Bennington after he took his own life.

I've been a fan of Linkin Park since their debut but while I've grown less fond of their typical works I still like listening to their more sad or quiet songs like 'The Little Things Give You Away' and this cover takes one of their more rock style songs and makes it like their introspective ones.

The song is sad but also a bit uplifting, I guess like mourning a lost loved one but then getting up and moving on. It's a good tribute to him. It also makes me think on how Bennington went through a lot of terrible things and the music he worked on with the rest of the band came from actual pain and yet for so many years people would only reference Linkin Park as the punch line of a joke.

Chase Holfelder actually has a lot of very interesting covers, mostly changing major key songs to minor key ones, some of my favorites being his cover of 'She Used to be Mine', 'I Want You To Want Me' and 'House of the Rising Sun'.

For heaven's sake, put your embeds in spoilers.

Standard internet etiquette for threads like this, people.

EvilRoy:
I'll go a weirder route and suggest Personal Jesus as covered by Marilyn Manson

He takes a song that's generally pretty good, with a side of "I'm a sex symbol", and takes it a couple steps further, which seems to be all that needed to happen for it to go to creepy town.

I find Manson's covers good, but I bought a greatest hits album a bit ago, and THREE of the songs are covers. That ain't right, man.

Great covers are fun. But you know what's even more fun? Really, really bad covers! Case in point:

Evanescensce - The Chain (Fleetwood Mac cover)

Since I've been watching videos of covers a lot, Youtube decided to recommend this. Gave it a listen, and since this is the internet, now I need to complain about it. Cuz fuck me, this imo is just horrendous! I don't even like The Chain that much, I think Fleetwood Mac has way better songs. But still ... What The Fuck was Evanescensce thinking when they turned it into this bland McMetal that, despite the big power chords and added string orchestra to make it sound grand and epic, manages to come across as so piddly weak compared to the original vocal harmonies.

bluegate:
For heaven's sake, put your embeds in spoilers.

Standard internet etiquette for threads like this, people.

Embedded videos don't work when you put them in spoiler tags. Well, they used to work, then not as the site started borking from lack of a tech team. Then it worked again for a few days a little while ago, but now they're once more borked. You're right tho, the thread is getting a little bandwidthcrushy.

I blame Cross.

Someone already mentioned Disturbed's version of Land of Confusion, so I'll second the sentiment. I do not like Disturbed. I like Genesis. Disturbed still did it much better.

So my contribution, both by Iced Earth.

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