Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Everyone I Know Leaves Me In The End

While its true that there are mawkish reasons for making the posthumous re-release of Johnny Cash's Hurt the Parallax View Single Of The Week, kicking back those sentiments shouldn't obscure the fact it's light years ahead of anything else we've heard that's released this week. Like all great cover versions, Cash has taken hold of the Nine Inch Nails song and made it his own in a way that would make listening to the original now seem like a second-hand thrill. Shorn of Reznor's druggy excesses, the Cash version is beautiful in its simplicity, starkly poignant and steeped in a septegenarian sombreness that lends a chilling everyman appeal. By comparison, his version of Personal Jesus (also included in the single, along with a version of 'Wichita Linesman' and the video for 'Hurt') sadly just feels like so much deadpan karaoke, a cool concept that feels gratuitous in execution.


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