This post comes from longtime 9B reader, Chris Green and really expands upon the Covers EP that Two Cow released yesterday. In his words, “When I saw the announcement, I really wanted to help out my favorite band more than $5 worth…”
Ninebullets.net faves Two Cow Garage have just completed their covers project and released the results as a 3-track bundle for sale on their bandcamp page (http://twocowgarage.bandcamp.com). For those of you who don’t follow the band on facebook, here’s the deal: in order to defray some of the costs of their upcoming European tour, the band sought the help of their fans online. They first contemplated a funding campaign in the style of a kickstarter project, but decided that it would be more interesting to do something a little different that would give something back to the fans for their generous donations. So they announced on their facebook page that they would run a poll via FB and email, with participants naming songs that they would like to hear TCG cover. The top two vote-getters would be recorded by the band and sold together for download for a minimum donation of $5.
As soon as the announcement was posted, the song titles started flying. Suggestions spanned the gamut from Don McClean’s “American Pie” to NWA’s “Gangsta Gangsta” and everywhere in between. (Autopsy IV Note: I voted for Cazwell’s “Ice Cream Truck“)
Many people suggested songs by The Replacements. This renowned Minneapolis band is often cited when people try to describe TCG’s music and the song “Can’t Hardly Wait” has been covered both by singer/guitarist Micah Schnabel on his solo album When The Stage Lights Go Dim and also by the whole band at live shows. So, it’s not surprising that when it came time to tally the votes and announce the winners, the #2 slot was won by the song “Bastards of the Young”, from the Replacements’ classic 1985 album Tim. As you would expect, Two Cow totally nails the song, amping up the noise level a little bit and belting out the anthemic chorus. Micah sings lead on this one, and his voice fits perfectly into the space occupied by Paul Westerberg in the original song.
CONTINUE READING AFTER THE CUT
The #1 slot was won by an organized campaign for the Aerosmith song “No More No More”. At first I was thinking that since my knowledge of Aerosmith ended with their platinum-selling hard-rock albums of the 70s and I didn’t know the song, I’d listen to this one first as if it were a new Two Cow song before looking up the original. But when the lyric “Baby I’m a dreamer/Found my horse and carriage” came on, I recognized it and was momentarily transported back to my pre-teens. It’s from the 1975 album Toys in the Attic, which I owned as a kid (ON AN 8-TRACK TAPE!! – I did a quick search of e-bay to check on how large of a fortune I would have made if I’d kept it until it became a collector’s item, and found that the answer was $2.49). On this version, TCG ups the tempo a bit, and Micah and bassist Shane Sweeney trade verses back and forth, sometimes in full-on larynx-shredding mode.
When the announcement was made that the winning tracks had been recorded and mixed and were ready for download, there was an additional bonus cover track included as a surprise. The band had decided to also record the song “Amphetamine” by the another Ohio band – Cleveland proto-punk band Rocket From the Tombs. RFTT was active between 1974 and 1975. They never actually released any recordings (there is a collection available culled from live shows and practices with them playing their originals as well as covers by bands including the Stooges and Velvet Underground) but loom large in the early history of punk rock for the two bands that they spun off. Members Dave Thomas and the late Peter Laughner formed the noisy and experimental Pere Ubu, who released the TFTT songs “30 Seconds Over Tokyo“, “Final Solution”, and “Life Stinks” on their early recordings. Gene O’Connor (aka Cheetah Chrome) and Johnny Blitz formed The Dead Boys, fronted by Stiv Bators (who had also appeared with RFTT according to wikipedia), also releasing a bunch of RFTT tunes on the classic album “Young, Loud and Snotty” including “Sonic Reducer“, “Down in Flames”, and “What Love Is”. Rocket from the Tombs as well as The Electric Eels give Cleveland a credible claim as a birthplace of punk rock.
Two Cow Garage’s cover of “Amphetamine” has Shane Sweeney doing lead vocal duties. As in the original, the songs shifts between wistful and quiet to full-on pounding drums plus feedbacky guitar freakout plus keyboard filling out the sound.
Original: Rocket From The Tombs – Amphetamine
As a huge fucking Two Cow Garage fan, I think this project is a big success in terms of giving the community something to talk about and getting us some fun new songs to listen to, and any of these would be great as a surprise in a live set. Now it’s up to the fans to make this project a success for the band by buying these tracks. Every $5 donation will be a big help for the band, and if you can afford more, so much the better. For myself, I thought about how much I had enjoyed the band’s music throughout the years, and how much more it was worth to me than what I had paid for a few CDs and cheap show admissions and acted accordingly.