Various Artists
"Spiders from Venus"

(Skipping Discs 2003)Various Artists - Spiders from Venus

It seems like David Bowie has a resurgence every decade. The past few years he has been as big as when he was "still" gay. And in honor of the man of so many different faces, nineteen female artists have a go at covering some of his most notable songs.

Opening, aptly, with his very first hit, Pitch Black Dream's rendition of "Space Oddity" is fragile as pulses and scratches make up a majority of the instrumentation. The electronics continue for Bug Funny Music Foundation's overly intense "Man Who Sold The World" and an awkwardly funked up "Changes," by Joe K's Kid. Andrea Perry offers a relatively simple but solid indie rock cover of "Kooks" as Wendy Ip oozes with attitude on the instrumentally tight "Moonage Daydream," as the clear and strong vocals from the May Hart Band make "Starman" what it is. Shesus give a standard high energy poppy punk version of "Hand On To Yourself" while The Fur Ones incorporate a soft and simple 70s sound into "Watch That Man."

Squealing with heavy, rhythmic guitar chords, Zeta Bane put "Cracked Actor" in over drive. Switchblade Kitten dumb down the hit Bowie gave Mott the Hoople, "All the Young Dudes" while Essra Mohawk retains the funk and infectiousness of "Golden Years." Astrid Young and Ce Ce Zen offer soft, acoustic and easy listening renditions of "Modern Love" and "As The World Falls Down," respectively. Lunasect put forward a hard rock sound on "The Heart's Filthy Lesson" while First of June and Q go goth for "Hallo Spaceboy" and the, ironically, Marilyn Manson inspired "I'm Afraid of Americans." With a slight bit of edge, "Afraid" by The Jenn Beast Band closes the compilation.

"Spiders from Venus" have some real stars, while others are trying to find their way out of a black hole. Some of the renditions lost the essence that made the songs great to begin, opting instead to remake the song in the band's own image. But the compilation does have some true gems hidden within it.

B-

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