Vitamin String Quartet
Though the concept of the tribute album is a bit corny, contrived and redundant, some recent releases have provided an interesting new take on classic records. The Vitamin String Quartet [who have released 11, count â€˜em, 11 albums in the past year] has done a great thing by selecting a baker’s dozen of the more current and hip artists around and translating their songs to strings for Per Versions. With performers such as Broken Social Scene (â€œAnthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl), Spoon (â€œThe Way We Get Byâ€), The Decemberists (â€œYankee Bayonetâ€), Explosions in the Sky (â€œYour Hand in Mineâ€) Tom Waits (â€œHold Onâ€), Sigur Rios and Portishead covered, this collection appears to be a modern music fan’s wet dream. But upon further speculation, though, only a few of the interpretations translate well. The most accurate and legible track lies with a brilliant and slightly less moody rendition of Portishead’s “Sour Times.” You kind of find yourself optimistically humming “Nobody loves me it’s true/not like you do.” Other quality tracks include an uplifting version of “Hoppipolla,” originally executed by Sigur Ros, and “Banshee Beat” by Animal Collective; however, once you’ve gotten past the initial excitement, the novelty of Per Versions soon wears off.
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