Last month, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever released their great sophomore album Sideways To New Italy. (It ranked amongst our favorite albums of the year so far.) And while they’re still unable to tour behind it, they’ve been filling the time with a couple cool performances. They already teamed up with Stella Donnelly to cover Deadstar in an empty cricket stadium. And today they’re back with something that might’ve been somewhat unexpected.
RBCF — or, at least, four out of five members of RBCF — got together for a Sirius XMU session where they opted for a surprising cover: Hole’s “Malibu,” from 1998’s Celebrity Skin. Since drummer Marcel Tussie is absent, the band took a more stripped-down approach. Guitarist/singers Fran Keaney, Tom Russo, and Joe White layer their voices, while bassist Joe Russo switches to a keyboard for some ambient backdrop. A lot of Sideways To New Italy sounded like pure sunlight; it’s ideal summer music. And the band’s rendition of “Malibu” is a kind of airy, hazy bit of summertime melancholia.
Whenever people are back on the road, it’s also tempting to imagine RBCF doing a full-band uptempo cover of “Malibu.” That’s not ever something I thought we needed, but now it sounds like a pretty damn good idea. Below, watch RBCF’s performance and revisit Hole’s classic original.