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Track Review: Atlas Sound "Knife"

Grizzly Bear's signature blog smash, "Knife," was an instant cover version magnet. The original is an amorphous cloud of prettiness, a creeping golden hour fog. But to a lonely dissenter who wasn't fully captivated by the band, or the near universally acclaimed Yellow House, it always seemed unfinished, like its gorgeous tune could be put to greater use. The scruffy Canadians in Born Ruffians proved me right by returning the song to its sixties roots and adding some sock hop pomp, but there are plenty of ways to mold a block of clay.
Deerhunter front man Bradford Cox takes a turn at bat under his Atlas Sound name on GB's upcoming Friend EP. By adding broken music box percussion Cox makes the song uglier, but more propulsive. With even a sputtering clockwork rhythm to wrap around, the song's unstoppable melody seems less windy and bloated. Cox keeps these original vocal lines intact, but multi-tracked. His overlapping self-harmonies give them an almost schizophrenic character. It makes it seem quite possible that the song's betrayer and its victim are one in the same.
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Atlas Sound
Grizzly Bear
Track Review

It's a great, creepy cover, but only as a cover, I think... it certainly wouldn't be as enjoyable without Grizzly Bear's "windy and bloated" (comparatively clear?) melody in the back of my head. Rather than sounding more propulsive, it actually feels sort of halting and directionless, almost lost... which isn't necessarily a bad thing, btw - it sort of fits in with that split personality theory/observation. thanks for posting it.


Yeah, I know I'm in the minority on this one. You should really check out Born Ruffians KEXP session, which I'm sure is still floating around somewhere. It's my favorite of the three versions mentioned.

Jeff K

I will-haven't heard it, thanks.


[...] while Bradford Cox'''s Atlas Sound takes the song and, well, Jeff Klingman says it best here. The live version of ''"Little Brother''" has been recorded for the album, and Band of Horses [...]

» Grizzly Bear to release ‘Friend&#821

Ummm... I totally love this cover i personally find to be just as enjoyable as the bradford cox did it so it has to be amazing, right???

Korgoth, Master of Universe

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