Divine Fits made the indie blogosphere very happy when they announced their formation earlier this year.
Comprised of Spoon’s Britt Daniel, Wolf Parade/Handome Furs’ Dan Boeckner, and New Bomb Turks’ Sam Brown, the Fits were destined to make waves among jangly garage aficionados.
But they’ve got their own love for major-label R&B: Check out a fan video of their performance of Frank Ocean’s “Lost,” taken from their performance at the Met in Pawtucket, RI, after the jump.
The Fits aren’t the only ones covering Ocean these days. We’ve sifted through the myriad home recordings and inevitable acoustic versions and compiled five other Ocean covers that are actually awesome.
5. Arkells, “Thinkin Bout You”
This Canadian rock group opened for the Josh Homme/John Paul Jones/Dave Grohl collective Them Crooked Vultures when they played in Toronto in 2010, and were once joined on stage by Ke$ha during a rendition of Outkast’s “Ms. Jackson.” But their version of Ocean’s flagship single is anything but bombastic. They play up the song’s wistful romance, reducing it to nothing but plaintive electric arpeggios beneath three-part vocal harmonies. This is R&B run through a lonesome, homespun filter.
4. Yasmin, “American Wedding”
Yasmin, who used to DJ for the likes of N.E.R.D. and Taio Cruz, brings an emotive flair to this acoustic interpretation of Ocean’s tale of teenage nuptials. The UK songstress has a potent voice and lends the track some energy and a sense of urgency.
3. Ed Sheeran, “Swim Good”
This UK singer-songwriter sensation – he’s gone quadruple platinum in England, collaborated with One Direction, and performed at the London Olympics – brings a distinctly busker-y sensibility to this song from nostalgia, ULTRA:
2. Yuna, “Thinkin Bout You”
Ed Sheeran may only need a voice and a guitar, but Yuna only needs a voice, period – her a cappella cover is composed purely of her own looped vocal samples. The Malaysia native, whose debut single “Live Your Life” boasts a production credit from Pharrell Williams, handles the Ocean standard with graceful touch. In her hands, the tune is delicate without being fragile - not to mention immensely creative.
1. The Afghan Whigs, “Love Crimes”
Leave it to Greg Dulli and co. to transform a quirky R&B tune into a string-laden rock epic. Dulli has made no secret of his fondness for Ocean’s music, frequently covering the singer during live shows. “Love Crimes” is perhaps his pièce de résistance - a track that exceeds the original in intensity and scope and functions as an artistic statement all its own.
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