In the wake of that collection of commercials swiping Sigur Rós’s sounds to evoke their emotion without paying the band any residuals, Pitchfork has found some great examples of commercials also ripping off Fleet Foxes’s “White Winter Hymnal” and Grizzly Bear’s “Two Weeks.” Compare:
So why do this when so much legally-licensed indie rock appears in commercials anyway? As in the Sigur Rós example, the band won’t give permission for the song, but the producers are in love with it after hearing it with the commercial edit. (The Thermals turned down $50,000 when Hummer wanted to use “It’s Trivia.”) Or, it’s still cheaper to have someone write and produce a quick soundalike. Or maybe the original is too politically charged, so it’s easier to have your own adorable TV star sing something that sounds pretty close to the sound you’re going for:
There is, at least, one band that never met a commercial they didn’t like. And they must be stopped.