Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Songs In The Key Of M

Geoff Trainor

Okay, so I totally ripped off that title from a great soundtrack. It's alright, because one of the songs on my list today is related to one of the ones on the soundtrack. That makes it alright, right? This list is a little different from those I've done before. It actually was inspired by a list I had been previously working on which follows the old formula. Sometime you'll get to see it.

This week's list is comprised of piano versions of songs (which aren't typically done on piano). There is a great mix here. Some of the songs are covers, some by the original artists and there's even a couple instrumental versions.

Including in this list will be the original versions of each song, so that you may compare them to the pianoized version.

10) Gary Numan - Down In The Park (MP3) (Original) (Better Than Original)
This instrumental version of Gary Numan's hit comes from his 1980 album, Telekon. Out of the four versions of the song I've heard (Foo Fighters cover on the X-Files soundtrack being the best) this is probably the least fun. It would have been better if there were some vocals I think.

9) Phil Collins - In The Air Tonight (MP3) (Original)
I'm not much of a Phil Collins fan, or that of Genesis for that matter, but this live version of 'In The Air Tonight' is worth a listen. Without the over-produced nonsence that goes into his songs, Collins sounds great. Or maybe this is just a freak thing, either way, check this song out.

8) Air - Playground Love (MP3) (Original)
Yeah, I liked the Virgin Suicides...um, the movie that is. Air did the soundtrack for the movie, which is where this song comes from. This is an instrumental version of the song. Like Down in the Park, I think it would have been better with vocals. I guess it is more fitting for a soundtrack in this version though.

Is That A Monopoly Piece?

7) Placebo - Teenage Angst (MP3) (Original)
This is a live version of Teenage Angst. It has been slowed down considerably for the piano and the end result sounds almost haunting. Although this song breaks the pattern a bit by including other instruments into the mix, it's still a great addition.

6) Tori Amos - Smells Like Teen Spirit (MP3) (Original)
Ever since I first heard this cover years ago in high school, thanks to Casey, I always associate Amos with the cover. This is a very fun cover. Amos' haunting vocals enhances the inherent depression of the Nirvana original.

5) John Lennon - Real Love (MP3) (Original)
This is the original demo of the song by Lennon. It isn't the best quality, but for Beatles fans, otherwise known as residents of planet Earth, it is a great find. I've never really gotten into this song before, but I think this early demo surpasses the later version released by the Beatles.

4) Spoon - Sister Jack (MP3) (Original)
This is a great demo of a great song. There seems to a be a lot of demo versions of songs on this list. Hmm, new list? Check back next week for Mocking Music's Top Ten Indie Demos Ever! Or, maybe not.

3) Elliott Smith - Miss Misery (MP3) (Original)
Okay, I admit it, this version doesn't sound a whole lot different from the original version. Just exchange the acoutic guitar for a piano. The feel of the song is pretty much the same in both versions. But I like Elliot Smith, which means according to the law of music blogs, so must you. Um, don't bother looking that law up though.

2) Emm Gryner - Crazy Train (MP3) (Original)
Considering Emm has two entire album of cover songs, it was hard to choose one song to add to the list. I was going to go with Ozzy's Crazy Train, but in the end, Foo Fighters' I'll Stick Around won. Won until I realized that I was really only choosing it due to my Foo Fighters bias, and not because of the song's merits. Which is why I went back to my original choice.

Well Emm Got A Lot More Dressed Up Here Than She Did When I Saw Her

1) Thom Yorke - Like Spinning Plates (MP3) (Original)
It wasn't at all hard choosing this as number one. The original, from Radiohead's Amnesiac, was already a fantastic song. This lo-fi piano version performed by Radiohead's own Thom Yorke is just brilliant.

This was actually one of the more rewarding lists I've done. Usually when I do these lists I am familiar with all the songs. This time however I discovered a lot of pieces done on piano. Like Martin, I am just trying to popularize the piano as a mainstream instrument. With their exposure on Mocking Music, these struggling artists will surely succeed. To the artists:

You're Welcome.

Thom Yorke - Like Spinning Plates
Radiohead - Like Spinning Plates (Original)
Emm Gryner - Crazy Train
Ozzy Osbourne - Crazy Train (Original)
Eliott Smith - Miss Misery
Eliott Smith - Miss Misery (Original)
Spoon - Sister Jack Demo
Spoon - Sister Jack (Original)
John Lennon - Real Love Demo
The Beatles - Real Love (Original)
Tori Amos - Smells Like Teen Spirit
Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit (Original)
Placebo - Teenage Angst
Placebo - Teenage Angst (Original)
Air - Playground Love
Air - Playground Love (Original)
Phil Collins - In The Air Tonight
Phil Collins - In The Air Tonight (Original)
Gary Numan - Down in the Park
Gary Numan - Down in the Park (Original)
Foo Fighters - Down in the Park (Better Than Original)

Various Artists - Songs in the Key of X
Emm Gryner - Girl Versions
Spoon - Gimme Fiction
Radiohead - Amnesiac
Air - The Virgin Suicides

This Is A Long Song For Someone With Nothing To Think About
Sunny Days...
Who Are You Calling A Narcissist
Jesus, Mocking Music Loves You Too
Yes, But It Is Heart?
The Man of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts
No Pan Troglodyte Business Here
Everything Is Automatic

Comments on "Songs In The Key Of M"


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (2/5/06 10:15 pm) : 

this is Geoff's best list ever I think.


Blogger Casey Dorrell said ... (2/5/06 11:59 pm) : 

Very clever anon, very clever.

Or should I say, Mr. Marsh?

You see, if you all recall, a certain anonymous commenter complimented Mr. Marsh on his last post, which I identified as suspicious and probably Mr. Marsh himself. This was neither afirmed nor denied.

Now, to throw the investigation off, Mr. Marsh has complimented Mr. Trainor anonymously, thus deflecting suspision.

Well played, but I'm not fooled!


Blogger Calum Marsh said ... (3/5/06 12:01 am) : 

Partly correct, sir: I was indeed the culprit behind this comment. However, I am not the person who complimented my own post.


Blogger Casey Dorrell said ... (3/5/06 12:12 am) : 

Ah, but you initial motivation for being anonymous remains unanswered.

You're being watched.


Blogger Geoff Trainor said ... (3/5/06 12:34 am) : 

I've always known you had a sort of voyeur thing going on.


Blogger graham said ... (3/5/06 12:38 am) : 

Both versions of playground love are included on the Virgin Suicides soundtrack. The piano version is called Highschool Lover.

It's a sort of finicky detail but anyone out there who cares about labelling and organizing their mp3s absolutely perfectly might care.


Blogger Geoff Trainor said ... (3/5/06 1:12 am) : 

I assumed it probably was part of the soundtrack, if not a piece from the movie.

Thanks for the confirmation.


Anonymous rollins said ... (3/5/06 9:19 am) : 

liking the live Placebo, thanks.


Anonymous rollins said ... (3/5/06 9:23 am) : 

also for radiohead covers fans:
Radiohead Tribute piano style


Anonymous kwigz said ... (3/5/06 9:50 am) : 

fantastic list.
great job!


Anonymous Dan said ... (3/5/06 11:50 am) : 

G-D DAMN! Phil Collins from the Secret Policeman's Other Ball album! That is one of the greatest unknown albums of the 80's. I'd love to get ahold of that one again. Lost it with hundreds of other albums in a flood. I just checked Amazon - the CD is $147 used. I was thinking of ripping the soundtrack off of a 20+ year video available at the library.
Please post more from this great album!!!


Anonymous rgsc said ... (3/5/06 12:19 pm) : 

Very nice list. Well done.

Marilyn Manson also do a rather good cover of "Down in the Park" it was a bside on the "Lunchbox" single (if anyone is interested in yet another version I can upload the song tommorow). It is closer to the Gary Numan version than the Foo Fighters' take, but with MM's voice adding a rather creepy quality that is lacking in the original.


Blogger Geoff Trainor said ... (3/5/06 12:37 pm) : 

Yeah, it was the fourth version I was referring to.


Blogger ClefPalette said ... (7/5/06 3:41 am) : 

I sold The Secret Policeman's Other Ball CD for $2 in 1996. (/LOSER) but I did put it toward the Portishead Dummy CD.... I have most of the tracks from that disc on an original 1X CD-R though.

Q: where do I not have to pay a monthly fee to post?


Blogger Casey Dorrell said ... (7/5/06 2:43 pm) : 

A: I don't understand your question . . .


Anonymous mary said ... (4/2/07 4:29 am) : 

could you please upload the piano version of 'playground of love' i would appreciate it a lot :)


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