Best Live Lounge covers


By Peter Davies

BBC Radio 1s live lounge is one the best things to come out of the station. Big names taking on other artist’s tracks and making them their own. Here are a few highlights to pick from.

Arctic Monkeys – Hold On, We’re Going Home (Drake Cover) 

Alex Turner has evolved into a kind of Elvis Presley styled font man over the years – pulling shapes during performances. This cover of Drake’s Hold On, We’re Going Home gives this R n B track an indie edge.Turner even changes the lyrics at the end to give a shoutout to Fearne Cotton.

Kodaline -Sing (Ed Sheeran Cover)

Probably one of the most underrated bands out there, Kodaline mixed Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift to create a bit of Live Lounge magic. If you look closely, singer Steve Garrigan is using his iPhone propped up on a coffee mug as a prompter for the lyrics – genius!

Ben Howard – Hideaway (Kiesza Cover)

Ben Howard is one of the best live acts around and it’s a real treat when he does Live Lounge. His cover of Hideaway strips a dance track to it’s bare bones into a deep acoustic dream. Howard’s guitar skills are simply incredible on this performance!

Bastille – We Can’t Stop (Miley Cyrus cover)

The kings of mash ups took on pop rebel Miley Cyrus’ hit song We Can’t Stop but gave it a real twist. The band use beats from Eminem’s Lose Yourself and Lion King track I Just can’t wait to be king to continue throughout the song. To top it all of they infuse lyrics from Billy Ray Cyrus’ Achey Breaky Heart – how do they come up with this?

Slaves – Shutdown (Skepta cover) 

An edge twist to a grime hit, Slaves took Shutdown and turned it into something else. The odd duo used their punk rock vibe to add a bit of grit to this mainstream track. It even got Skepta’s approval when he joined them on stage to perform the cover at Radio One’s Big Weekend in 2015.

Craig David – Love Yourself (Justin Bieber cover) 

CRAIG DAVID! (sorry had to be done). The Southampton man had been off the music scene for a little while but came back with a bang during his Live Lounge performance. A bit of tempo and an English accent added a different feel to the track. The original 90s collaborator has re re-winded time to his classic dance hit days (see what I did there!).

Chvrches – What Do You Mean? (Justin Bieber Cover)

Live lounge seems to dig out a few hidden Beliebers amongst the bands – Chvrches seem to be one of them! The Scottish trio use synth and mixes for this recent pop classic to give it a different dimension. Another band that could probably turn any song into gold!

Birdy – Let Her Go (Passenger cover) 

Birds seems to be a regular in the Live Lounge and nobody is complaining! Her rich voice and gentle piano skills can make you feel lost in her music. Passenger’s Let Her Go has been covered by many acts but this has to be one of the best interpretations.

Kings of Leon – Dancing On My Own (Robyn cover)

American giants Kings of Leon had been through a lot of side issues before this performance but this cover is another triumph. It was almost a chorus written for frontman Caleb Followill!

Kasabian – The Sweet Escape (Gwen Stafani cover) 

An old Live lounge performance but still great today! The Leicester boys took this pop classic and turned it into an raw unplugged masterpiece. We’re used to the band churning out rock anthem choruses but instead they show their classical talent in this performance.

If there are other performances that you think are worth a mention, add a comment below!

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  1. Those are some fantastic covers! There is such a lot of talent out there – it’s great to see that BBC Radio 1 are helping to highlight it!

  2. So much great music on one place! Great feature :))

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