When we started this we meant “week” in the loosest possible sense of the term, obviously.
Before we start our second celebration of the art of the novelty cover version, much love to whoever submitted our site to the Spanish version of Digg/Reddit the other day, ensuring that at the moment 95% of all traffic to this blog is from Spain. Resultantly, to make y’all feel at home, our next themed week at ILB will be seven whole days of virulent racist abuse aimed at black footballers. Put it in your diary folks.
Richard Cheese and Lounge Against The Machine stole their entire schtick from an act called Black Velvet Flag: take contemporary rock songs that feature a) swearing b) references to drug use c) hot sexy sex action, and turn them into Copa Room lounge standards. However, I’d never heard of Black Velvet Flag until about 15 minutes ago, and they never made me snigger like a twat when I downloaded their early recordings off Audiogalaxy back in 2001, so I gotta give the dukes to R Cheese here.
Richard Cheese facts:
- Was the entertainment at Brian Setzer’s Christmas party once (meaning that the band can legitimately have a “(recorded live at Brian Setzer’s house)” addendum to one of their track titles
- Also were the entertainment at Travis Barker’s wedding reception, before he got died in that plane crash (subs: check if he died or not?)
- Have a lead singer who looks like a Conservative Party candidate for a seat that’d never vote Tory in a million years
- Have sold 150,000 CDs (or “Four Lupe Fiascos”, as it’s known in the business) over the course of their career
- For a mere $488, Richard will SING YOUR NAME ON HIS UPCOMING ALBUM. One assume he’s already tried to sell his underwear online and that failed.
- Despite the utter hackneyed corniness of the concept, have put out some really, really good stuff.
Your complete guide to the RCaLATM back catalogue, then:
The high point of this album, and probably Cheese’s entire career, is the bit in the middle of his cover of Papa Roach’s (ask your parents) “Last Resort” where he suddenly shouts “Ladies and gentlemen, in the audience tonight, Academy Award-winning actor Ralph Fiennes!” The take on the Dead Kennedys “Holiday In Cambodia” works surprisingly well, possibly proving that for all his conning bandmembers out of a lot of money, Jello Biafra is a really great songwriter. Shame he had to parade that mentally ill black guy around for all his friends to laugh at.
Contains a cover of “Fell In Love (With A Girl)” recorded at least two years before Joss Stone gave us her take, so it triumphs over Devon’s finest there, and it also isn’t one of the worst things in the history of mankind, also triumphing over Joss. This is where arguably their most famous track is found, a take on Disturbed’s light-hearted take on child molestation “Down With The Sickness”, which featured on the Dawn of the Dead OST. The Britney and Guns N Roses covers are massively unnecessary though, being as if you mix Axl with Spears you actually get Las Vegas incarnated.
I’d Like A Virgin (2004)
Previously reviewed by me for Stylus Magazine, but then again back in 2004 I was also giving Courtney Love’s solo album rave reviews, so let us no longer talk of those days (seriously, I apologise). Contains a version of “Hey Ya” that’s much better than Will Young’s, a version of “Gin and Juice” that’s much better than that fucking alt.country version you hear every now and then, and a version of “Milkshake” that’s not as good as the one Peter does in Family Guy when he’s about to get prison raped. Their “Feelin’ It” by Blink 182, which turns up at track 17 here, is probably the best thing they ever did.
Aperetif for Destruction (2005)
Holy shit, what’s Agyness Deyn doing on that album cover? That girl gets everywhere. This was where the concept may have started to get slightly tired, being as tracks like “Been Caught Stealin'” and “Somebody Told Me” are pretty self-knowing and ridiculous (respectively) already to be worthy of sending up, and breaking out the iMac talking voice for “Stephen Hawking” doing a duet with him on “The Boy Is Mine” is hella played out. Still, version of “You Oughta Know” on here.
Silent Nightclub (2006)
Don’t know, never heard it.
So there you have it, our second novelty cover version tribute post. A great band, I’m sure you’ll agree, just not a $488 great band.