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See and saw, bounce me back to you
May 13, 2012 11:01 PM   Subscribe

Between their inscrutable lyrics and lead singer Liz Fraser's quicksilver voice (here she is singing with Massive Attack live in 2006), the Cocteau Twins are not an easy band to cover. A male "bedroom musician" might seem like a particularly unlikely choice. Nevertheless, Youtube artist Matt Gurley (aka fooberdoobs) has posted some understated but worthy takes on Know Who You Are At Every Age, Heaven or Las Vegas, and Serpentskirt.

His Youtube channel also features original songs and an impressive assortment of other covers, including songs by Björk and My Bloody Valentine.
posted by en forme de poire (11 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite

 
These are really nice interpretations!
posted by methinks at 11:20 PM on May 13, 2012


He's done a good enough job, but Liz Fraser is integral to the beauty of those songs.
posted by pracowity at 11:31 PM on May 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


It took me a while as a fan before I finally got up the nerve to ask my peers "so...are the lyrics just gibberish, or what?" and was given the answer "well...for all intents and purposes, yeah."

I liked that. I've never really dug poetry, or had much appreciation for "symbolic lyrics" or what have you. But I enjoy the human voice as an instrument. If I listen to an opera in a foreign language, I don't care what they're saying, I just enjoy the tenor, timbre, the "sound" of the voice. (though perhaps counterintuitively, I do enjoy the occasionally well-constructed libretto of an English language musical)

Frazer's vocal stylings are certainly integral to Cocteau Twins' appeal, but I can appreciate a reinterpretation. It was a bit jarring to see him absolutely strumming the shit out of that guitar, though, for a sound that (once recorded) seems as if it had been gently plinked out by Mirkwood Elves.
posted by ShutterBun at 11:54 PM on May 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


I forgot to turn autoplay off and heard some nice Jesus and Mary Chain and My Bloody Valentine covers as well.

Now I'd like to hang out with this guy cause we'd get along rather well, music-wise.
posted by bigendian at 3:14 AM on May 14, 2012


Putting on a Cocteau Twins album is like an instant tranquility and contentment switch for me.

These are some surprisingly good covers of something I'd have said didn't need covering. With a time machine set for 15 years ago this guy could easily land a contract on Projekt. I want to listen to some Soul Whirling Somewhere now.
posted by Foosnark at 6:13 AM on May 14, 2012


Putting on a Cocteau Twins album is like an instant tranquility and contentment switch for me.

Exactly this. And it's her voice to a large extent, so although the covers really are kind of remarkable technically they don't really do it.
posted by The Bellman at 7:04 AM on May 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Know Who You Are At Every Age
Heaven or Las Vegas
Serpentskirt

Serpentskirt sung by Faye Wong, who also did versions of Violaine and Rilkean Heart


Elizabeth Fraser talks about her lyrics.
posted by Grangousier at 7:24 AM on May 14, 2012


Damn, I didn't mean to post that. Got a tab frenzy happening here.

Ahem: Faye Wong - Serpentskirt.

Am checking the others. May have hallucinated the version of Violaine. In the meantime, here's a Cocteau / Faye collaboration, apparently.
posted by Grangousier at 7:29 AM on May 14, 2012


I was wrong, it wasn't Violaine, it was Know Who You Are At Every Age.
posted by Grangousier at 7:30 AM on May 14, 2012


It was a bit jarring to see him absolutely strumming the shit out of that guitar, though, for a sound that (once recorded) seems as if it had been gently plinked out by Mirkwood Elves.

I don't think I can listen to Treasure or The Spangle Maker and say that the music sounds like it was gently plinked out by anything.
posted by blucevalo at 2:54 PM on May 14, 2012


*realizes there may be people who don't know all the Wang Fei/Cocteau Twins collaborations*

Please listen to "扫兴 Sǎoxìng Ruining the Mood" and "分裂 Fēnliè Broken Up", both written by Cocteau Twins. Then, if you like, go check out my translations of the lyrics.
posted by jiawen at 6:00 PM on May 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


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