Category: Mumford & Sons

Mumford & Sons Cover:
Springsteen, Townes, Simon & Garfunkel, Alt-J, The Beatles & more!

October 2nd, 2012 — 10:12 pm

Mumford & Sons rose to fame rapidly: from a 2007 formation that found them on the road with Laura Marling, with rented instruments and without even an album to their name, to a 2009 debut LP that slammed through the charts, garnering awards aplenty along the way, culminating in a pair of Grammy nominations in late 2010 that subsequently paved the way for even bigger successes at home and abroad.

Though it’s an easy claim for those following the indiefolk market, like so many others, we’ve been fans of the folk rock quartet throughout their meteoric rise. Although they hadn’t recorded another full-length until just last week, a series of EPs and live sessions and guest star spots kept them in our radar. Throughout, the rich, soaring harmonies and neo-traditional instrumentation put them squarely in our affection; their literate songwriting, and their penchant for both the odd cover and the frequent collaboration, kept us coming back for more. And the odd cover of and from the boys of the West London folk scene – from compatriots and copilots of the Glastonbury circle such as Two Door Cinema Club and Marling herself, and of popular tunes from Vampire Weekend’s Cousins to Wagon Wheel – let us celebrate them here and there, as warranted.

But in the last few days, as their second studio album Babel has slammed the market, the band has truly exploded into our hearts and ears, thanks to a huge series of coverage that celebrates the folk and folk rock predecessors who have influenced both their own sound, and the modern folk rock crowd at large. The set includes a bonus track cover of Simon and Garfunkel’s The Boxer from that same album with special guests Jerry Douglas and Simon himself, a World Cafe take on Townes Van Zandt’s If I Needed You that easily rivals any of the plethora of covers in our early 2012 Single Song Sunday feature on the song, a surprise BBC Radio 1 cover of Alt-J’s Tessellate, and a huge and utterly splendid Mumford & Sons & Friends Daytrotter session released just yesterday, with tour-bus recorded covers of Springsteen, Dylan, The Stanley Brothers, Guy Clark, and even a take on a Roger Miller song from the old Disney animated version of Robin Hood in the mix, and with special guests Abigail Washburn, Nathaniel Rateliff, and members of Dawes on board for the ride.

Taken together, these new releases are a joyful noise indeed; added to the BBC Radio covers of their past, they comprise a companion album of mostly-in-studio coverage sure to please even the most jaded old folkie. Listen, and be amazed – and then go on to Daytrotter to download the rest of their set, snag a copy of Babel, and become one of the millions who know.

And a few favorite covers of the West London boys, as bonus tracks:

As always, we eschew advertising here at Cover Lay Down, preferring to ask you to support the artists we tout instead of cluttering our pages with sponsors competing for your hard-earned dollars. But the bandwidth we provide comes at a cost, and we depend on your donations to help support the cause.

So purchase Babel, and sign up for Daytrotter to download the entire session referred to above. And if there’s dimes in the coffers when you’re finished, please, click here to help if you can. Thanks.

[PS: want more Cover Lay Down in your life? Check out our Facebook page for updates and bonus tracks throughout the week. Now featuring a hugely pristine bonus video: Mumford & Sons cover Neil Young!]

4 comments » | indiefolk, Mumford & Sons