Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Wye Oak - "Dance My Pain Away" (mp3)
Mickey Free - "That I Do" (mp3)
Splice Today, a great site that I've been doing some writing for, recently released its second compilation album for free on the site. Baltimore Does Baltimore, Part 1 is, as you can probably tell from the title, a collection curated by Zach Kaufmann of Baltimore musicians covering songs by other Baltimore musicians, mostly people from the indie rock scene. However, there are two tracks on here that worthy of noting here on Gov't Names, and both involve Wye Oak, who are probably my favorite band in Baltimore of the past couple years. On one track, rapper Mickey Free (of Height With Friends and the Baltimore All-Rap Round Robin) remixes Wye Oak's song "That I Do" and adds a verse to it. But the really exciting thing is that Wye Oak themselves worked up a cover of Rod Lee's stone classic "Dance My Pain Away." On the face of it, a mellow rock band covering a Baltimore club song is the kind of thing that might easily make me cringe; rock artists doing tongue-in-cheek of covers of raunchy rap songs have become a really awful annoying cliche in the past 10 years, and it kinda irritates me that Kaufman references one, Ben Folds's "Bitches Ain't Shit," when describing Wye Oak's track. What they do with "Dance My Pain Away" is a million times better than that, and totally respectful of the original song, which has a lot of melody and pathos to begin with, and I think them just being from Baltimore probably gives them the right understanding of it and club music to pull it off. Plus I'm really just excited because there is probably no person in the world who loves both Wye Oak and "Dance My Pain Away" as much as I do. Baltimore Does Baltimore, Part 1 was mastered by my friends at Mobtown Studios, by the way.

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