Monday, April 23, 2007

In House #1854: New Patti Smith, Leonard Cohen Reissues

A busy show today features two legends of pop music, each of whom never really seems to get their full due. Fresh off of her induction this year into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Patti Smith returns with a covers album, entitled Twelve. Smith tackles a vast range of styles and artists, covering nearly forty years of musical output in the process. Versions of the Rolling Stones' "Gimme Shelter," and Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit," might almost be said to be expected, and Smith rather nails them accordingly. Also in the mix, though, are eyebrow-raising takes on Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World," and Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit," given a six-minute, banjo-backed treatment the reverence of which is the yin to the original's unruly yang. Interestingly, Smith almost exclusively chooses to cover songs sung originally by male leads, trying her hand at numbers by The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Neil Young, and Stevie Wonder, among others. Twelve is out tomorrow on Columbia.

Also today, music from the first three releases from the legendary French-Candian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen, each of which gets a deluxe reissue treatment tomorrow courtesy of Sony Legacy. On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the release of Cohen's debut, the label will issue remastered, deluxe versions of Songs of Leonard Cohen (1967), Songs From a Room (1969), and Songs of Love & Hate (1971), each including bonus tracks. A true giant amongst both musical and literary circles, Cohen's artistic influence has been incalculable on many of those that have come after him. This initial trio of releases shows him in top form as it includes such staples of his catalog as "Suzanne," "So Long, Marianne," "Bird On a Wire," and "Famous Blue Raincoat," among others. Still going strong at 72, Cohen's most recent release, his eleventh, was 2004's Dear Heather.

In House #1854.

Airdate: 4/23/07
Focus: New covers album from Patti Smith, Twelve, plus music from three new Leonard Cohen reissues out tomorrow, as well as from the new Nonesuch release, A Tribute to Joni Micthell.

Patti Smith, from Twelve:
  • "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" (MP3)

    Leonard Cohen, from the reissued version of Songs of Leonard Cohen:
  • "Blessed Is the Memory" (MP3) (bonus track)
    ...and from Songs of Love & Hate:
  • "Famous Blue Raincoat" (MP3)


    In House PODCAST #298

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    Blogger Dave said...

    I love the background vocals on Famous Blue Raincoat. That big leap is one of my favorite moments ever.

    5:09 AM  
    Anonymous Hans said...

    Never thought that Patti Smith would cover Tears For Fears. I posted a live version of Helpless recorded in NYC on April 18 here.

    6:42 AM  

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