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Between The Covers

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Mr. Little Jeans Covers Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs”

From upbeat indie shuffle to soothing electric pulse, Mr. Little Jeans’ cover of “The Suburbs” is almost unrecognizable from Arcade Fire’s more naturally instrumented original. More traditional instruments are replaced with shimmering synths and drum machines that lie underneath apathetically sexy female vocals, which sensually warn of a suburban shootout: “You always seemed so sure / That one day we'd be fighting / In a suburban war / Your part of town against mine.” The soft singer effortlessly brings out the slight rhymes in Win Butler’s restrained falsetto chorus “Sometimes I can’t believe it/ I’m moving past the feeling,” in a warm bath of sound.

Duffy Covers Paul McCartney & Wings’ “Live And Let Die”

An unmistakable voice covers an unmistakable song with an unexpected result. Duffy’s distinct quavering vibrato is accompanied by equally charming vibratos on violin and electric guitar on her cover of Paul McCartney & Wings’ “Live And Let Die.” Duffy’s simple yet soulful reinterpretation of a famous song into her own style even gained McCartney’s public approval after it appeared on War Child’s Heroes charity album. In the same way that musical complexity makes McCartney’s original so majestic, Duffy’s stripped-down sound makes her cover beautifully understated.

James Vincent McMorrow Covers Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love”

Irish folk singer James Vincent McMorrow has been compared to Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens and Ray LaMontagne, but he really makes Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love” his own in this cover.  He takes the song higher, singing it in a delicate yet powerful falsetto backed by simple and deliberately placed piano notes that sink into disappearing echoes. McMorrow’s emotionally intimate and personal tinge put a gentler touch on the otherwise cheerfully poppy 1986 number-one hit song.

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Vitamin String Quartet Performs Arcade Fire

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The String Quartet Tribute to Paul McCartney

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