Rhythms Del Mundo, The Killers - Hotel California
Right now in Copenhagen, The Global Climate Change Conference is taking place and via Artists Project Earth this single has been released in support of the event. Rhythms Del Mundo is an Afro-Cuban project which first made itself known on the 2006 venture Cuba, recently coming back to public attention as a result of the whole Arctic Monkeys Dancing Shoes video bust up. In the meantime, RDM have released another album, Classics including such mementos as Keane performing Under Pressure, Amy Winehouse doing Cupid and this version of Hotel California.
In principle, cover versions can be great, if not taken too seriously, but if you are tacking a classic you are likely to be treading a thin line between credibility and offence (Rolf Harris' dreadful 1993 version of Stairway To Heaven actually met with death threats!). On the other hand it is possible to put a whole new take on a song and sometimes make it sound better than the original (Johnny Cash's version of Hurt for example). Now The Killers have already illustrated a deft hand in interpreting other artists' material via the Sawdust album, so what of this latest effort?
Well it certainly does put a whole new slant on the original with a very up tempo danza or calypso beat to it, so in that respect it does place a whole new slant on the original. However, the whole frivolity of the experience destroys that credibility gap I'm afraid and Flower's all too chirpy vocals do nothing to rescue it. The single is an edit of the album version and fades just as the song is about to enter the famous Joe Walsh guitar sequence, so let's be thankful for that at least!
The performance itself has little merit sadly, but we shouldn't ignore the cause it supports. So next time I'm on a dark desert highway, I will contemplate our beloved climate……then stick The Eagles greatest hits on!
Release date: 30/11/09