Palehound 'Southern Belle' - Elliott Smith Cover
August 07, 2020
Yesterday was Elliott Smith's birthday and Palehound delivered the perfect memento to recognize the occasion. The cover of 'Southern Belle' is available everywhere you enjoy music.
"Elliott Smith is one of my biggest inspirations because of songs like "Southern Belle." The lyrics are stunning in that classic way of his where he captures the two sides of everything: the beauty and the ugliness, the smooth and the gritty. I also think a lot of people forget how great of a guitar player he was. When I was learning to play the song I was taken aback by how punk the chord progression was, how complex and quick it was, while also maintaining the casual cool of a folk song. Only he could really do that."
"It stays pretty true to the original at first, Smith's delicate but slightly frantic acoustic guitar line basically intact, and Ellen Kempner does the near-impossible by replicating the clenched-teeth desperation in Smith's voice. But rather than staying acoustic throughout, Palehound's version explodes into life halfway through. Thankfully it's not over-embellished or shiny — this is how 'Southern Belle' would have sounded if Smith had taken Quasi into the studio to remake the track in the late '90s."
-Alex Ross - FADER Exclusive Premiere