These Beasts are now streaming their distorted-to-hell cover of Alice in Chains' track "Sickman". The cover stays fairly true to the original, though there are some parts These Beasts really amps up the heavy perfectly. Which to me is the mark of a great cover – retain the character of the original while putting your own signature on the track.
"We have never really played a cover song as a band in the first place, much less recorded one to go an album," said These Beasts about the cover. "So listening to what might be one of Alice in Chains' most unconventional songs musically, 'Sickman,' at first we were a bit apprehensive, and we spent a couple of months just talking about how we should approach it before we even started learning it. We are proud of what we came up with to keep it sounding like These Beasts while still being able to deliver a version that hardcore Alice in Chains fans might enjoy."
The band also commented on the significant of Alice in Chains.
"Dirt came out when I was a kid. I was really into Facelift and Dirt when they came out and enjoyed some Alice in Chains stuff after those albums, but I didn't really keep up with them. Fast forward to new Alice in Chains and I really like what they are doing. As a guitar player, I have always respected and admired what Jerry Cantrell has been doing. He is a great guitarist, much more than I am and that is the reason is why I asked my friend Dallas Thomas (Pelican, The Swan King, Asschapel), another guitar player who's playing I admire, to come in and play some leads on the recording. He blasted out within a couple of hours what would have taken me days or weeks to figure out.
"Going back to Dirt though, it had been many years since I had put on the album. So, as a band, we started taking in the whole album again. I didn't realize as a kid how dark Layne's lyrics really were and after spending a lot of time digging into 'Sickman' it did occasionally get me in a weird headspace sometimes trying to interpret those lyrics over and over in my head."
Dirt (Redux) features the following artists covering the corresponding tracks from Alice in Chains' 1992 album Dirt:
- Thou – "Them Bones"
- Low Flying Hawks – "Dam That River"
- High Priest – "Rain When I Die"
- Khemmis – "Down in a Hole"
- These Beasts – "Sickman"
- Howling Giant – "Rooster"
- Forming the Void – "Junkhead"
- Somnuri – "Dirt"
- Backwoods Payback – "God Smack"
- Black Electric – "Iron Gland"
- -(16)- – "Hate to Feel"
- Vokonis – "Angry Chair"
- The Otolith – "Would?"
Pre-order Dirt (Redux) here before its September 18 release date.