Continuing our expansion of original content, Under The Gun Review presents its latest column, Sounds Familiar, dedicated to trawling the world and web for the latest remixes, redos, and reminiscent bits that our newest columnist Julia McAlpine finds appealing. Be prepared for some diversity in your music library. The songs may not be new, but they will be different and worth a spin.
If you have a remix or cover that you would like to see featured here, let us know! Write firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “Sounds Familiar” and we’ll take a listen!
Of Monsters and Men – “Yellow Light” (Cillo Remix)
You know I can’t resist anything Icelandic, folk, or indietronica, and combining all three is automatically a win in my book. This remix of “Yellow Light” harnesses the gorgeous vocals supplied by Of Monsters and Men to create a soothing and ethereal track infused with more serenity than the original. If you’re looking for a lovely, mellow song to lift your mood, test drive this track.
Modestep – “Paradise” (Coldplay Cover)
I’m honestly not a huge fan of the newer Coldplay — my favorite album of theirs is A Rush of Blood to the Head, which I received for Christmas in 8th grade and listened to ad nauseam. I must admit that “Paradise” is a fairly catchy song, but unlike Coldplay’s older material, songs like “Paradise” have a short-lived appeal. For someone with like-minded Coldplay opinions, this track is refreshing. This Modestep rendition is both a cover and a remix — the dubstep takes the listener by surprise and I love the vocal riffs that Londoner Josh Friend contributes.
Neon Indian – “Psychic Chasms” (Aanorak Remix)
Working with the natural strengths of Neon Indian, this remix is one of those chillwave tracks that entertains without distracting. It’s the perfect track to play while chatting with a friend in the car or working on a project; it provides a blanket of relaxing indietronica over the moment. I love the magical qualities of the synth provided by Aanorak and the barely-there vocals of Alan Palamo that provide just enough to of a melody to sustain the track. Get ready for a zen-like moment.
Lucius – “Ghosting” (Freelance Whales Cover)
Freelance Whales is an adorable band (that’s a compliment, not condescension), and “Ghosting” is one of my favorite songs from their first album, Weathervanes. This cover by the retro-loving Lucius captures the same spirit of the original, but still manages to make the song new with the inclusion of multiple vocalists and the almost-kitschy instrumentals. I’ve never quite understood the lyrics to this song, but like Freelance Whales, Lucius creates a contrast between seemingly sad lyrics and a peaceful, almost joyful melody.
Rihanna Feat. Mikky Ekko – “Stay” (Them Jeans Remix)
I never thought I’d see Rihanna end up on my column, but this song is actually pretty lyrical, catchy, and, frankly, un-Rihanna. Instead of questioning a guy’s performance abilities (shout out to “Rude Boy”), Rihanna expresses sentimentality in this song. This remix gives the song a tranquil, rainy-day feel, separating the track even more from Rihanna’s usual schtick. Crossing my fingers for more like this from her!
That’s it for this week! Julia is probably going to go online shopping now. Story of her life.