What the fuck? Stereogum posted a tribute album to The Strokes? The band that is about a decade old with one album that will always remain a classic in Is This It? and three other subpar albums? Really? Does this band really deserve a tribute album? Well, if anything – they at least did it for the right album. In my mind, this album really did bring back “rock n’ roll” in some ways.
Usually, when I see that a band has covered a song I’m usually expecting an interpretation in the band’s style. Good covers usually contain elements of both the original and an interpretation. And in this tribute, you’ll definitely hear a lot of that. Owen Pallet’s cover of “Hard To Explain” is absolutely exquisite. The composition and strings came together beautifully and is heart wrenching. Austra took on “Alone, Together.” In the description Katie Stelmanis stated “It took a while, but ultimately I just made it sound like an Austra song, which is to be expected!” And indeed it sounds just like an Austra song. Peter Bjorn and John turned “Is This It?” into (the only guitar driven song on the tribute) a jaunting rock song the best way they know how.
But the standout song for me is The Morning Benders’ take on “Last Night.” Although actually taken out of their realm, the original was turned into a synth-laden pop track with very subtle dance elements. The song still remains true to the original as the catchy aspects of the songs could not possibly be replaced.
The Strokes album Is This It? is one of the few indie rock albums of my generation that I believe will stand the test of time. I’m not too sure whether the band will, but I can just imagine just another decade or two from now this album really will. Go to Stereogum to download the rest of Stroked: A Tribute Is This It.
MP3: “Last Night” (The Strokes Cover)