Rock renditions of a song are always better than the original. That is a fact. Any song, even if it’s literally the stupidest pop song ever, can be made better (or at least tolerable) by adding a pop punk riff, or some metalcore breakdowns. We know that sounds extreme, but it really is true.
And because of this well-known, indisputable truth, we have wonderful and eclectic Punk Goes… cover albums that feature all our favourite emo/alt bands singing mainstream pop songs.
The first track of Punk Goes Pop Vol.7 is an energetic cover of Shawn Mendes’s ‘Stitches’ by pop punk powerhouses State Champs. It’s safe to say that radio plays actually killed and buried this song long ago, but State Champs do an excellent job of breathing new, cooler, life into the rather standard pop track. And in true pop punk fashion, SC’s version is sped up, and infused with punchy, spirited riffs, and Derek DiScanio’s dreamy vocals.
The Amity Affliction give The Weeknd’s ‘Can’t Feel My Face’ a metalcore riff-heavy melody and some bold unclean vocals. And, like most The Amity Affliction tracks, it works perfectly. Adele’s ‘When We Were Young’ is just as magnificent and timeless in its rock form. Andy Black’s deep, resonant vocals are hypnotic and grand and give a wonderful contrast to Juliet Simms’s passionate, angelic vocals. A stunning musical team.
Grayscale do the impossible and make the extremely overplayed and dull ‘Love Yourself’ actually sound good. The cover features punchy drums and lively, upbeat riffs—not to mention smooth, layered vocals. Another winner is Boston Manor’s ‘Heathens’ cover. Though the track does slightly resemble the original, BM’s weighty version is sped up, and topped with pulsating riffs, bold drums and choppy pop punk flourishes.
Eat Your Heart Out’s fast-paced pop punk cover of ‘Shape Of You’ is an absolute banger. Another favourite is Ice Nine Kills’s metalcore-infused pop rendition of ‘I Don’t Wanna Live Forever’. The track maintains the original’s rich nature but is much more interesting and melodious.
Seaway’s ‘Closer’ is turned into a slow pop punk ballad with chunky riffs and gentle vocals. Seaway introduces a level of delicateness and deep sentiment to the vacant track. The cover is vibrant, tuneful, and beautiful.
Punk Goes Pop Vol. 7 is a compilation of incredible bands making decent (and sometimes godawful) pop songs sound much, much better.