The Best Modern Rock Covers of Classic Songs
I'm a big sucker for covers. Some aren't. It's like a movie remake, there's a lot of them out there, people get weary of them. But also like a movie remake, there's a few that are just SPECTACULAR.
There's nothing like taking an old song and freshening it up for a new generation.
Let's get to the best of them (in my opinion.)
If you've never heard of Emery before, I don't blame you. They've been low-key slaying it since their debut in 2001. A consistent group in a healthy post-hardcore scene, Emery hails from Seattle and contributed this cover to a Punk Goes 80's compilation CD.
This was the song that reminded me how much I love rock/metal bands covering old 80's new wave songs.
Pet Shop Boys were MASSIVE in the 80's. Ghost seems to get their inspiration from the theatrics of previous eras.
Ghost is no stranger to covers, having made an EP full of covers. They even covered "Here Comes the Sun" on an earlier album.
With "sin" in the title and lyrics, who else could own a cover of this song better than Ghost?
It's not quite as iconic as "Eye of the Tiger" from Rocky III, but Robert Tepper's "No Easy Way Out" is a track worthy of a place on your work-out/hype playlist and on this list. It benefits tremendously from an updated guitar sound to tear through its already fantastic licks.
Speak of the Devil...You Know. Former Killswitch Engage frontman Howard Jones got back on his rock god feet with his new project Light the Torch. Formerly named Devil You Know, the band won Best New Band at the Metal Hammer Golden God Awards in 2014. The next year, they unleashed this delicious cover of an iconic anthem filler.
It's one of the few covers I enjoy more than the original. Pink Floyd's masterpiece is AWESOME. But I found myself really connecting with Avenged Sevenfold's powerful re-imagining. It's faithful to the original but with the flair that only Avenged Sevenfold can bring.
Here's Howard Jones doing his magic thing again.
This is a simple case of a great metal classic getting an updated brutal sound. It was so good, it was included in the tribute album Ronnie James Dio – This Is Your Life, despite being recorded 5 years before the album came out.
I would be crucified if I didn't put this one on the list. It's fantastic. For Skynyrd, it's their 3rd best selling song. For Shinedown, it's a staple on tour. For this station, it's a big time song request favorite.
BONUS: Simple Man by Deftones
Given the nature of the cover, the initial plan vs. the end product & the untimely death of Dolores O'Riordan at 46; it's hard to argue it's an amazing story. The Cranberries frontwoman was supposed to be in the studio with Bad Wolves to reprise her iconic vocals on January 15, 2018. She never did. She died earlier that day. The band would later donate all of the proceeds to her family. The total was $250,000.
The original track was a chart-topper in 1994 on the alternative rock chart. The cover would do the same on the mainstream rock chart. It's hard to argue this song's impact.
It's been seen on YouTube almost 400,000,000 times. It's the first thing you see when you Google "The Sound of Silence." The Disturbed version was certified 3x Platinum in the United States and was nominated for a Grammy.
Even Paul Simon wrote to the band after seeing them perform it live. "Really powerful performance on Conan the other day. First time I'd seen you do it live. Nice. Thanks."