Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

Free Energy and Titus Andronicus, "I'm Going Down" (And Bruce Springsteen Covers Throughout History)

Philly's Free Energy and Jersey's Titus Andronicus just finished a tour together. At one of the last shows, last week in Atlanta, the Titus guys joined Free Energy for a beery, raucous rendition of "I'm Goin' Down," a song from Bruce Springsteen's 1984 album, Born in the U.S.A. It's pretty great.

Coincidentally, this is the same Springsteen song NYC's Vampire Weekend has been playing lately. (Or maybe not so coincidentally? Maybe there's some competitive tri-state-area one-upmanship going on?)

And for any hipster-hating Springsteenites who might sniff at the preponderance of tank-tops and skinny jeans in these videos, remember who practically invented the look. In fact, if you're wondering about the phenomenon of young bands covering Born In the U.S.A.-era Bruce songs? Well, he told them to do it himself, didn't he? While wearing a tank-top.

I can never hear this song without thinking of Jim Belushi walking out of a bar bathroom with his pants stuffed with paper towels

Here are a bunch of other Springsteen covers, recent to less recent:

18 Comments / Post A Comment

KarenUhOh (#19)

Good audio, if you can withstand the Tourretish production values:


That photo of Springsteen looks exactly like a girl I went to college with who insisted she was "Pat Benatar's Double."

keisertroll (#1,117)

"Maybe THE AWL should do a BIOGRAPHY on Pat BENATAR."

Dave Bry (#422)

That picture of Bruce DOES look kind of Benetarry. (Karen, did your college friend go to high school at Ridgemont High?)

The kids in the first video could learn some stage presence. But otherwise, why not? Springsteen lends himself to the cover song a little better than say, The Beatles or The Fall.

propertius (#361)

I'll give $5 to anyone who tries "Fit and Working Again".

Pill_Hell_Tom (#7,656)

This was pretty great. I was at the final Titus Andronicus show at Webster Hall on Saturday and I wish they'd saved this for that performance.

Also, Free Energy was atrocious. Terrible, boring songs, absolutely zero stage presence. It actually made me think less of Titus that they apparently think enough of them to tour together.

Flashman (#418)

My favourite indie Springsteen cover isn't in fact a Springsteen cover at all, it just sounds like one:
Wolf Parade – This Heart's on Fire:

cherrispryte (#444)

While I have previously declared my deep love for The Hold Steady, I would just like to point out that their cover of Atlantic City blows my fucking mind and is far, far superior to the original. It is also the crowning jewel in my "Peter Hess (on sax) makes everything awesome" theorem.

Rex Manning Day (#6,873)

Ha. The Hold Steady version is ok, but it's also pretty straight-forward cover of Springsteen's live version of the song (cf, Live In New York). Only sort of inexplicably more cheerful.

Then again, I've always thought The Hold Steady sounded like a mediocre Springsteen cover band anyway, so I'm probably not the most objective judge of their version.

Zack H (#5,316)

uck. I was at the show on Sat too and Free Energy was the worst band I've ever heard live. I have no idea why The Screaming Females (who seriously rock) played before those jokers. Agree with Pill – although maybe Free Energy just makes Titus look better :)

iantenna (#5,160)

what, no emmylou?

Dave Bry (#422)

Oh, man. Those last two are great! (Emmylou and Jarvis.) I'd not heard them.


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