So as I said in the write up for ‘For Emma,’ I love alternate versions of songs. I figured I would throw together a quick mix of them for you, as I think they are worth sharing.
Same Song, Different Version
(only the first time through will play in the below order)
1 ) Flightless Bird, American Mouth- Iron and Wine. This live version strips the song of everything but Sam Beam’s amazing voice. He did this when I saw him in concert late last year and it was breathtaking.
2 ) For Emma- Bon Iver. From the MySpace Transmissions session. Switches the entire composition to create a haunting sound with just drums, piano, xylophone and Justin Vernon’s falsetto.
3 ) I Won’t Be Found- The Tallest Man on Earth. Perhaps my favorite Daytrotter song ever. That piano brings this song to another level.
4 ) The Longest Day- Megafaun. I like the original, but I felt it dragged just a little. This version, from a HearYa live session, kicks up the tempo with great results.
5 ) The Songs of National Freedom- Richard Swift. By removing the other instruments and just pounding this out on the piano, Richard Swift refashioned this into a rollocking tune you simply cannot stop from tapping your foot to. From Daytrotter.
6 ) The Dream of Evan and Chan- Ben Gibbard. Gibbard teamed up with Dntel for this song, with the original sounding pretty much like a Postal Service tune. This trades in the electronics for an acoustic guitar and it’s still great. From KEXP.
7 ) Yellow- Coldplay. Say what you want, but ‘Yellow’ is still a great love song. Chris Martin sits down behind a piano for this single take gem while at KCRW as the rest of his band slept.
8 ) Anna Sun- Walk the Moon. Spoiler alert: the original for this song is going to be on the summer mix. This acoustic version manages to keep the energy of the original and bring a fresh sound to it all at the same time.
9 ) The Curse- Josh Ritter. The original of this song was one of my favorites last year, and during his Daytrotter session Josh changed the song from piano based to guitar based. It’s a great song either way.
10 ) Wake Up- The Arcade Fire. While the most obvious change in this early morning KCRW performance is that it’s being played by acoustic guitars and is much quieter in general, the thing I love most is the increased role of the piano.
11 ) I Can See the Pines Are Dancing- AA Bondy. The whole thing is slowed down here on this HearYa session version, with that slowburn beginning letting you know this is far different than the rolling album version.
12 ). Dance Dance Dance- Lykke Li with Bon Iver. The sound is awful in this rip from a YouTube clip. However, it’s still great. It throws the restraint of the original out the window and just allows the song to be the fun, danceable tune it is at its core.
13 ) Sleepyhead- Passion Pit. Perhaps the song that has the most jarring change, all the samples and loudness of the original are gone and replaced with a quaint piano. It took me awhile, but I’ve grown to really like this version from Minnesota Public Radio.
14 ) Chicago- Sufjan Stevens. There seem to be 37 different versions of this song, but this is my favorite alternate take. It’s just a simple acoustic version, but it’s really great.
15 ) Rivers and Roads- The Head and The Heart. This is one of my favorite songs of the year, and I’m amazed that this version is able to so effortlessly change it to a piano based tune. An absolute gem from their Fuel/Friends Chapel Session.