11) “Sad But True”
Artist: St. Vincent
Description: I never thought of this as an upbeat pop song, but here we are! St. Vincent’s gothy vocals seduce over electronic beats that are instantly recognizable while still sounding different. It’s not a personal favorite, but it still deserves full credit for covering Sad But True so differently while still sounding good.
12) “Sad But True”
Artist: White Reaper
Description: White Reaper lightens the song up a bit; whether that’s good or bad might be up to you. It turns out to still be a great song without the downturned crunch, but even though it sounds decent, it’s not offering anything particularly outstanding.
13) “Sad But True”
Description: It’s a little faster, dirtier, and punkier, with a surprise ending. It’s not bad, but punk’s not my jam, and neither is this version. I do like the slowed-down final verse, as well as the horns throughout. It’s not something that’s ever going to end up on a playlist of mine, though.
14) “Holier Than Thou”
Artist: Biffy Clyro
Description: I like how Biffy stays true to the original’s seething rage despite delivering it in buttery smooth vocals. The chorus is downright haunting, and the instrumentation during the break tickles my fancy too. The slow, grunged out end carries a strong AIC vibe that’s intensely heavy. Overall this track is a little all over the place, but all of those places are pretty good!
15) “Holier Than Thou”
Artist: The Chats
Description: The vocals on this are a bit harsh, which sounds idiotic in a review of a heavy metal album, but most metal artists keep the atonal stuff to a minimum. The Chats, though, basically write their entire punk take around the off-key chanting. Maybe it feels better when you’re charging around a pit to it, but I don’t feel this one.
16) “Holier Than Thou”
Description: I don’t know that we needed this many covers of the same song in the same punk style, but here we are anyhow. That said, OFF! push all their energy into this track, and it’s infectious. It also gets a nod for being one of the few tracks with an actual music video, and a great one at that. These guys get this song 100%
17) “Holier Than Thou”
Description: Yeah. But no. It’s the sister track to Weezer’s cringy Sandman cover with vocals bordering on pathetic and a straight uninteresting clone of the original guitar track, except played lamer and with an embarrassment of a solo. If you can’t play lead, don’t try to play leads. Hard pass for me.
18) “Holier Than Thou”
Artist: Corey Taylor
Description: One of the few tracks that truly kick some metal ass. Nothing super fancy here, just the voice of Slipknot tearing through some of the most spiteful lyrics in the Metallica catalog. I think he actually does a better job than James. I hope he starts playing it live.
19) “The Unforgiven”
Artist: Cage The Elephant
Description: I have a Metallica tour shirt with opening act Cage in equally big letters plastered across the back, and it kind of ruins an otherwise great shirt. Long story short, Cage isn’t really my jam, but they do a decent job on this one and really deliver the spirit of the song with a mellower sound. There isn’t a single criticism I could honestly deliver, which I guess makes it a good cover!
20) “The Unforgiven”
Artist: Vishal Dadlani, DIVINE & Shor Police (Ft. Metallica)
Description: Cool take and reimagining of the song. Vocal dubs give a choral effect on the choruses, and the verses rage with the passion of the original. Electronic effects and Spanish vocals give an extra flavor to this very different but spiritually faithful rendition.
21) “The Unforgiven”
Artist: Diet Cig
Description: I didn’t particularly enjoy this synth-glam take. The words felt a bit meaningless, and the music was something interesting, but not anything great either. It could’ve been a proper EDM song with a beat, though.
22) “The Unforgiven”
Artist: Flatbush Zombies (Ft. DJ Scratch & Metallica)
Description: You can’t really call this a cover, but it is pretty enjoyable. The Flatbush Zombies lay down three original, intricately rapped verses, bouncing off the Unforgiven bassline and buffered by a spaced-out chorus sample from the original. I dig it!