Friday, July 20, 2012

Watchtowers

Hadn't heard this XTC cover of "All Along the Watchtower" before.

A couple of interesting things here:

  1. By my own definition of "versions" and "covers"—i.e. versions are copies of musical material, covers are copies of musical performances—this is clearly a cover of Dylan's song. It's a cover with low fidelity to its source, but still a cover. Despite genre differences, Dylan's performance matters more here than the song. The reuse of the harmonica is a particularly nice touch.
  2. What is great here is how little XTC takes from Hendrix's version, by all accounts, the definite version of the song. Perhaps, a certain enthusiasm for noise, but not much else.



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