27 April 2011 // Written by Joe Sparrow ~ 63 Comments

George Michael – True Faith

Apparently, when you die, time slows to a syrupy trundle and your whole life flashes before the eyes; the most beloved memories distending and stretching into long, glossy swathes of gorgeous nostalgia.

It’s a lovely thought; albeit one which cuts both ways – and the other direction heads towards clammy-necked horror.

What if the only life memory your brain can dredge up is that one time when you listened to New Order’s True Faith whilst under heavy sedation and encased in industrial packing foam?

As curious a scenario as it may seem, in retrospect this is the only reasonable circumstance under which the creation of George Michael’s cover of True Faith could actually occur.

For a man whose recent career has been characterised by one hilarious misfire after the other, by covering True Faith in the style of a near-comatose bends victim, managing only to gabble out lyrics in painfully slo-mo gasps, he has still – astonishingly – managed to catch the general populace off guard.

The whole song appears to have been arbitrarily slowed to half speed, and George’s phoned-in-from-a-parallel-universe-of-hopelessness lyrical style gives us a useful inkling of what it must be like to be trapped in both a vegetative state and a hospital ward along with a rabid fan of early 90′s synth pop.

One common theme that slops throughout the environs of the Bad Cover Version is the Horrifically Distended Vocal Performance. It’s as if the perpetrators have reached a point in their careers where egos become so inflated that Air Traffic Control frets whenever they get within 10 miles of Heathrow, and the simple act of making a nice song just doesn’t cut it any more.

Relief from George’s ennui was found in the form of the – apparently – newly-discovered opening in the front of his head that makes all sorts of amusing noises when that bit of muscle inside flops about.

Inert with tedium, and ill with Distended Vowel Syndrome, the lyrics subsequently supplied might well be an attempt to remember some lyrics he once half-heard from a song someone once hummed to him. Which is then processed, naturally, with Autotune.

Nonetheless, George set about this task with relish, and carefully documented the results, most of which sound a bit like, “Hhhhnnn-owvah-thingsa-that’ve-a-cowssttt-a-me-too-a-mwwuch,” but are much less entertaining when actually sung.

This is the sort of aimless, bottomless, thoughtless music that is piped into the lobbies of boutique hotels. The kind of music specifically designed to be as vapid as possible without alienating the well-meaning simpletons for whom the words “George Michael covering New Order” doesn’t sound the kind of internal alarms you’d associate with incoming Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles.

At least when children make vague burbling noises they have a valid excuse: they’re just trying to communicate their wide-eyed, inexplicable, endless love for Mummy and Daddy.

In making the same noises, George Michael simply communicates the fact that he has a mouth that can make sounds when he wants it to. Atrocious.

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