If there’s anything to be learnt from Arcade Fire’s world tour these last few months, there being room in rock ‘n’ roll for papier maché aside, it’s that nothing charms a crowd quite like a well-chosen cover. Every night on the road since releasing fourth album ‘Reflektor’ last October, Montreal’s finest have covered a song specific to the city they’re in. At London’s Earls Court this weekend, it was the Smiths’ ‘London’; in Minneapolis, it was Prince’s ‘Controversy’; in Atlanta, it was Atlanta’s own REM, and their track ‘Radio Free Europe’. When Win, Regine and co hit Glastonbury later this summer, there’ll presumably be a weirdo mariachi spin on the Wurzels’ ‘Combine Harvester’ thrown into their set for good measure.
ANYWAYS, it’s a trick fellow Worthy Farm headliners-in-waiting Metallica should try out. Reaction to their spot on the Glasto bill has been mixed, and that was before frontman James Hetfield recorded a voiceover for a hunting documentary, sparking an angry petition to have the group banned from Glastonbury for “clashing with the ethos of the festival.” Covering an indie staple or two could really help ingratiate the San Fran hellraisers among Worthy Farm’s throngs of indie zealots, many of whom have reservations about a metal band headlining Glastonbury. So Metallica, if you’re reading, pop any of these 100% serious cover song suggestions in your set and watch those cynics become adoring fanatics. You can thank us later.
Oasis – ‘Wonderwall’
Drummer Lars Ulrich has already joked about opening with a Gallaghers cover à la Jay Z in 2010: “We’ll start with ‘Wonderwall’ and we’ll take it from there,” he told the Guardian last week. DON’T JUST JOKE ABOUT IT, DO IT FERCHRISTSAKE! If it worked for Hova…
Mogwai – ‘Glasgow Mega Snake’
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – ‘Maps’
Or basically any Yeah Yeah Yeahs song, seeing as how “YEEEEAH” is James Hetfield’s favourite word.
Prince – ‘Purple Rain’
Everyone was expecting Prince to headline Glastonbury in 2014, so a blast of the Purple One would be a nice touch, wouldn’t it? Anyway, Kirk Hammet might be the only person in the known galaxy who loves a guitar solo as much as Prince.
The Beatles – ‘Helter Skelter’
James Hetfield covered the Fab Four’s ‘In My Life’ recently. How’s about at Worthy Farm the band tear into a cover of McCartney and co’s heaviest track, complete with thundering 12-minute Lars drum solo. Eat that, Ringo.
The Smiths – ‘Meat Is Murder’
They’ve gotta try to get those PETA supporters back on their side somehow after the bear-hunting furore of the last few days, right? A gruffed-up, chugging metal spin on this Smiths anti-animal cruelty anthem could maybe rebuild some bridges.
Animal Collective – ‘Fireworks’
Ever seen the pyrotechnics involved in a Metallica show? Now those are fireworks.
Arctic Monkeys – ‘Brianstorm’
Lars Ulrich is a huge Anglophile and adores Arctic Monkeys. So you know he’d want to get this ‘Favourite Worst Nightmare’ banger right. A high speed, razor riffed anthem, the original is only a couple of pinch-harmonics and some husky “YEURURRUUGGHH!” vocals away from being a Metallica track anyways.
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Velvet Underground – ‘I’m Waiting For The Man’
A little reminder that these guys made an album with the mighty Lou Reed. That’s some massive indie credentials right there. Okay, so their 2011 ‘Lulu’ collaboration was a bit of a mess, but still, c’mon, Lou Reed!
Radiohead – ‘Everything In Its Right Place’
A lot of people hold a bit of a grudge against Metallica for their crusade against Napster and illegal filesharing. A quick blast of Radiohead, who have taken to giving away their albums for free of late, should sort that right out. Not sure Thom Yorke would quite give his blessing but hey. Maybe Hetfield could even try out some of Thom’s famous dance moves?
Got a suggestion for a song Metallica should cover at Glastonbury? Let us know over on Twitter using the hashtag #MetallicaAtGlasto