Pete Kuzma – High & Dry feat. Bilal (Radiohead Cover)

Many moons ago, when I’d not been blogging all that long, I wrote about a Radiohead cover I’d heard on Gilles Peterson’s show. It was a cover version of Just by some hip young New Yorker by the name of Mark Ronson; I thought it was pretty good and predicted big things for the lad – just goes to show how little I know.

Because of the Ronson cover of Just I bought the album it was taken from – Exit Music, a whole collection of Radiohead tributes by a variety of artists, mostly from the left of centre side of 21st Century soul and, by & large, I was disappointed: they tended to be rather self-indulgent & flabby. However, recently, due to the, well, genius of iTunes’ Genius recommendation system, I’ve started listening to one of the tracks from the album – High & Dry by Pete Kuzma, featuring Bilal on vocals.

I know next to nothing about Pete Kuzma, other than that he used to work with Jazzy Jeff (good enough for me), or Bilal, apart from the fact that he’s worked with Common and was interviewed by Gilles recently (again, that’s good enough for me). Their version of High & Dry is, however, IMHO, stunningly good.

It starts with a blissed out R&B jam, with Bilal providing some stunning vocals, drops into a full on jazz breakdown, before coming back with some more space-age soul. It is, I think, and I realise that many may see this as sacrilige, better than Radiohead’s original. There, I’ve said it. And now I’m going to listen to it again.

High & Dry by Fouse Photography on flickr

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