Song Of The Day 5/13/2015: Ted Leo – “Since U Been Gone/Maps”

Quarterly Covers Report: It just so happens that this Quarterly Covers Report features three renditions of hits by female pop divas delivered by, well, a bunch of dudes. First there was one of the greatest all-around musicians alive spinning Britney Spears; closing out the week we’ll have one of my favorite covers of all time that takes a similar path. Today it’s Ted Leo, the cred-laden offspring of Gang Of Four and Adrian Belew, covering two songs in quick succession.

First you got “Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson, American Idol winner and sometimes-collaborator with metal parody band Steel Panther. And from all accounts a very nice woman. I like the nice people. The nice people are nice. You know who you are. “Since U Been Gone” was a better-than-average rousing pop anthem concerning post-relationship empowerment. Leo pushes us even further into an inevitable age of gender neutrality, and just at that point when you’re getting ready for the payoff he breaks into “Maps” by Yeah Yeah Yeahs. But it’s only a brief clip, a whisper into the cave of Karen O, who I also hear is a very nice person. Then it’s right back to the Clarkson program of yanking yourself out of your bootstraps, shorn of your fake valentines and the wayward promises that brush against the bough of your ship before they trickle downward into the watery confines of screwed-up eros. Your insurance rates are going down, sweetheart, so throw that beret into the air and we’ll catch it mid-flight via freeze frame.

Don’t read that out loud. The other bus riders might get nervous.

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