I watched Doctor Who on Saturday Night, Mummy on the Orient Express (A good episode, watch it on iPlayer if you haven’t already). This isn’t a review of the episode, rather a review of a song on it. By a singer called Foxes. She made a cameo at the start of the episode, singing a big band version of a song I recognised before…It was ‘Don’t Stop me Now’, by Queen. And what was even more surprising was I actually liked it.
It is the first scene after the titles when the Doctor and Clara enter the Orient Express…IN SPACE! And the camera does its usual pan zoom of the room with all the guests and stuff. And Foxes is standing in the corner, singing the song. I have a lot of problems with the actual scene, going on a tangent. It just seemed like a shameless plug for this singer. I was prepared to pass it off and say ‘this is crap’…but I actually realised what she was singing, and I was like…OK, that is pretty cool. If you’re interested on what I thought of the episode, I thought it was a standard affair The Doctor goes somewhere for fun, only to get into a crazy mishap with a villain of the week. However, it did throw in some interesting points, and did give some continuity to the ongoing saga that is The Doctor and Clara, which kept the episode above average for me. There was good acting, stunning sets, and I really loved the costumes on this one, I am a big nerd for 1920’a fashion, so I think it’s cool when people are all dressed up.
But back to the song, I do hate cover songs by other singers. I will not deny that I hate them. However, when he heard this on the show yesterday, I liked it.
It’s very rare you get a cover that works. Many artitsts fail at it, mostly because they keep it too faithful, but try to throw their singing style in there. It doesn’t work. It’s especially hard to cover a band like Queen, which is a larger than life already, with the guitars, and the multi layered vocals, plus the power of Freddie Mercury’s voice. I remember when I heard McFly’s cover of the same song. I absolutely hated the pop rock sound that they gave it, and they tried to sing it the way Freddie did it. I just felt that they really hit a bum note with that one, im my opinion. Granted, I do like McFly a whole lot more than I did then. But then. I resented them. HOW DARE THEY SING QUEEN. It put into my head that the original is always the best. And that is what I still think.
However, I’ve been proven wrong before. This is one of those cases. Foxes (silly name) has a very distinct voice. She could have gone two roots, she could emulate, or reinterpret. She reinterpreted the song, in a way that surprised me. The Train deco was obviously very 1920’s, and Jazz is very 20’s. Might as well change the song from a rock song, to a jazzy swingy cover. And that works in her favour, because it suits her style of singing. Not only would it have been stupid if it was the standard cover affair in the episode, but it would have reinforced my opinion. Foxes did a good cover of a great song. She made it her own. It is as big a contrast as the Placebo cover of ‘Running up that hill’! I was proven wrong, and I have a modern musician to route for in the modern music industry. I am proud tho say that, and I hope she continues to have success.