After devoting a post to Everclear it only seemed fair to devote a post to the other band that I love who manages to perform covers well. So let's talk about New Found Glory.
Let me say that I think that most of the original stuff pretty much sucks. In fact...of the 19 songs of theirs that are on my iPod...all but one is a cover of another song. The thing that makes New Found Glory better than the average cover band is that they managed to find the best of movie music songs and turn them into punk rock greatness. Let's face it...it is impossible to feel cool while listening to certain songs but that doesn't make them bad songs. New Found Glory obviously realized this as well and decided to do something about it. So here is my review of some of the cover songs by New Found Glory.
Never Ending Story from Never Ending Story (duh) (61) - OK so honestly...I loved the movie and the original song. In fact I seem to remember driving certain people crazy with both. While the NFG version is harder to sing along to because of the pace...it is a hell of lot easier to rock out to. In fact, unless someone is paying close attention, it is highly unlikely that anyone will realize that you are rocking out to the theme song for a childhood story involving a princess, a giant dog, and the evil darkness. It is a great cover.
I Don't Want to Miss A Thing from Armageddon (19) - Also not better than original but a hell of lot better than the shitty country version. It is good to listen to but it is just not the same. The song loses something in the rock version. This song was meant to be a passionate song...and this version fails to capture the emotion.
Glory of Love From the Karate Kid Pt 2 (104) - OK now this song OUTSTANDING! It is my second favorite cover that the band does...and it definitely in my Top 10 of All-Time Greatest Covers. It has an advantage over most because the song is so freaking awesome to begin with. In spite of great rockin' beat that NFG created...it still captures the desire in the song. Every time I listen to either version of this song I ask myself if there is a more romantic song. The answer is yes but it is hard to remember when listening the words. NFG makes magic with this song as it rocks and still manages to a be love song. To sum it up...I absolutely love it!
(Everything I Do) I Do It For You from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (51) - Pretty much the same as the song above. The passion of the song is not lost in the rocking of the song...so it is awesome. Vocally it is better than the original...so in this case...I would have to say that overall it is better than the original. It is hard to say that since it breaks the heart of the sappy romantic that is buried inside of me...but punk rock Millie wins in this particular battle.
My Heart Will Go On from Titanic (64) - The original version is another example of a song that most people won't admit to liking and would be embarrassed if caught listening to. It is actually a pretty damn good song. Think about it...it is well written, oozes emotion, and meets every requirement of a ballad. The problem is that it is sung by Celine Dion who has from some reason become taboo for anyone under the age 50. I personally don't get it but oh well. This version eases the struggle for people who want to enjoy this song. It rocks enough that you don't lose all of your "cred" but I wouldn't recommend testing that theory too far.
Kiss Me from She's All That (45) - Dino and I once discussed this song and decided that no man can listen to the original version without a woman present without seeming a little gay. Even then...it is probably best to act annoyed that you are having to listen it just to be safe. This version is a little bit better for protecting your manliness...but not much. It is a great version and for some reason amuses the hell out of me but a spade is a spade. This song is and always will be a song for chicks. Kudos for NFG for trying.
The Promise from Napoleon Dynamite (74) - Once again...I absolutely love the original version and have not enjoyed many of the other covers of this song. It wouldn't say that this is one of the most romantic songs ever but it is one of the most passionate songs ever. There would be no saying no to anyone using this song as their means of convincing. So the fact that none of that passion is lost in this version makes it totally rock. It isn't better or worse than the original...just different. (Don't you hate that cop-out line?!?!?)
Love Fool from Romeo and Juliet (34) - This song runs into the same trouble that Kiss Me does. It is a song that is for chicks only. While NFG does a better job of making this song universal...it still falls short in spite of the obvious attempt of changing all of descriptives to female. If you are secure enough in your masculinity...you could probably get away with rocking out to this version.
Iris from City of Angels (2) - This is the only cover by NFG that I don't like. Sorry boys but Iris is on the very short lists that should never be touched by anyone. The original version of this song in the Top 5 of most romantic and passionate songs ever and one would never guess it if the NFG version was the only one that they had heard. Poor choice...and it kind of pisses me off when I hear it...hence the low play count.
Let's close out the list on a good note...my favorite cover by the band is...
Hungry Eyes from Dirty Dancing (186) - Without a doubt...I like this version better than original. The original is pretty much the bomb but it is kind of awkward. You can't dance to it (slow or otherwise) and you can't rock out to it. It is simply a song to listen to and enjoy. It is a song a yearning which makes it awesome and NFG captures it in their version. In the right mood...the NFG version gives me chills when I hear their take on the line "I need you to see...this love was meant to be."
So overall it was a pretty good weekend. Friday was a pretty good day...work was low key so I got to BS with a few of my favorite work people. I got to leave early which allowed me to have a very pleasant afternoon that kept me smiling all weekend. Then Elizabeth and I got to enjoy dinner and drinks with Dino at The Rock. The only bad part of the day was not being able to hook Dino up with our pretty waitress. (Even after I made a point of stressing that he was "Uncle Dino" for crying out loud!!)
Saturday was a great day of shopping topped off with the pleasure of the lone Yankee fan in a Mariners/As game. (I got a lot of shit for wearing a Yankee jersey to the game but no one took me up on my offer to wear an Ibanez jersey if they bought it for me. Go figure.) And the weekend ended with a low key Sunday were the excitement of the day was confirmation of the fact that a simple text message really will make me smile for the rest of the day.