Copeland - Know Nothing Stays The Same (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Know Nothing Stays The Same (2004)

The Militia Group

This EP is simply a horrible idea.

Generally, cover albums/EPs/etc. are a bad idea on principle. Very few bands can record an entire release's worth of cover songs and make them sound alive, unique and fresh. No matter how talented the band in question is, covers are usually a letdown. (The same logic applies to tribute albums, but that's another review entirely.)

Now, Copeland is a good band. I'd go as far as to say that they're a great band. Beneath Medicine Tree found itself permanently lodged in my stereo for the majority of 2003. But this? This is horrendously bad. The band's selection of cover songs ranges from the awful (Phil Collins' tribute to watching homeless people, "Another Day In Paradise") to the absolutely cheesy and cringeworthy (Berlin's "Take My Breath Away," a song many of you were probably conceived to back in 1985). Singer Aaron Marsh's gorgeous tenor voice still sounds phenomenonal in and of itself, but he's wasting his breath on songs this tepid and vanilla. The instrumentation on these tracks is as straightforward and predictable as one would assume from a jangly indie rock band. Billy Joel's "She's Always A Woman" is reduced to just keyboards and vocals, and sounds like the slow dance at the worst wedding you've ever attended. "Part Time Lover" by Stevie Wonder gets a bizarre taste of electronics, and it's as bitter as sucking on a lemon.

Copeland has dug themselves into a rather enormous hole with this EP. Their beautifully-constructed emotional indie-rock will still live on in Beneath Medicine Tree, but the prospect of the band playing any of these horrifically bland cover songs live makes me never want to see them on stage.

Another Day In Paradise [clip]

Another Day In Paradise