Cage the Elephant has jumped out to an early lead, sitting two votes ahead of Velvet Revolver and three up on Rico. Surprisingly Velvet Revolver leads in the battle for worst, one vote up on Psycho and two up on the three-way between the Barenaked Ladies, Rico, and Antiseen. Murder the vote!
It's only fitting that I'm watching "Criminal Minds" while writing this, because today's song is "Psycho Killer" by The Talking Heads. Welcome back to Battle of the Covers.
There was no lagging in the votes for Lagwagon, as they won the battle for best cover of "Bad Moon Rising" by a solid five votes, earning as many votes as the next three artists combined. Emmylou Harris and Mourning Ritual (who I expected to challenge for the win and possibly take it) ended up tying for a distant second. The one battle Mourning Ritual did win was the battle for worst, though I'm reluctant to give it to them based on the results (no, this isn't because I liked their version, it's strictly math). Five of the eight artists in contention received two votes in the battle for worst. Mourning Ritual earned three. Based on these results I think it's far easier and more accurate to say they were all bad than it is to say Mourning Ritual's cover was the worst.
"Psycho Killer" was the debut hit for the new wave band Talking Heads, and technically pre-dates the band by a year, as they were still officially known as The Artistics when they first played the song in 1974. In early drafts of the lyrics the song was a semi-narrative of a serial killer actually committing murders. In the liner notes of Once In A Lifetime David Byrne described his though process when writing the song:
When I started writing this (I got help later), I imagined Alice Cooper doing a Randy Newman-type ballad.
Only David Byrne could think of such a bizarre mashup.
Another popular song, I found a full 28 covers between Wikipedia and WhoSampled.com alone. Fortunately for me most could only be found on YouTube as live covers (which aren't allowed in competition). Sadly this meant dropping artists like Local H and Phish.
Psycho - (1982)
Barenaked Ladies - (1989)
Antiseen - (1991)
Rico - (2004)
Bruce Lash - (2004)
Velvet Revolver - (2007)
James Hall - (2008)
Cage the Elephant - (2011)
LEST YE FORGET! If you want to check back on the results of previous rounds, or see what covers are coming in future rounds, there is now a Google Drive spreadsheet with past rounds and the upcoming battle schedule.
AND THE BONUS GAME! IDENTIFY THE FOUR ARTISTS IN THE "FIGHT" IMAGE AT THE TOP OF THE PAGE! BONUS POINTS IF YOU CAN DO IT WITHOUT THE GOOGLES!