MP3: Last Night by the Morning Benders
In the decades to come, few albums will seem as important or as influential to rock music as the Strokes’ 2001 debut, Is This It? It’s a record (and a sound) to which some of today’s biggest bands are forever indebted (e.g. Phoenix, Arctic Monkeys, Kings of Leon). And in honor of Is This It?s 10th anniversary, Brooklyn-by-way-of-San Francisco jangle-poppers the Morning Benders have taken a stab at the record’s biggest single.
As of right now, the Morning Benders have a few EPs and two full-lengths under their belts, and their growth between records has been quite significant. Debut Talking Through Tin Cans was full of pretty but straightforward guitar-pop. Their sophomore and critically acclaimed Big Echo kept the pop as its foundation but surrounded it with atmosphere and buried it under walls of sound (thanks in large part to production by Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor). The Morning Benders are currently hard at work on their third album and have been giving fans fairly regular progress reports via the band’s twitter account, which are pointing towards another leap into new territory: R&B-tinged radio-pop (think Beyonce or Katy Perry or The-Dream).
The band’s take on the Strokes’ “Last Night” seems to be a good indicator of where the new album may go. Layered doo-do-doos and poppy synths replace the two-guitar power chord attack of the original while Chris Chu’s gentle (and occasionally auto-tuned) coo replace Julian Casablancas’ throaty growl. On paper this sounds like a disaster. But in practice, the Morning Benders have managed to take one of the great classic singles of our generation and give it new legs. Right click on the mp3 to download the song or stream it below.