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Gnarls Barkley Cover Radiohead, Channel Buddy Holly

August 4, 2008 12:20 AM ET

Two years ago, Gnarls Barkley's "Crazy" was the toast of Lollapalooza and covered by multiple performers. This time, Cee-Lo and Danger Mouse returned the favor. Saluting 2008's most adored act, the twosome pulled off a brilliant rendition of Radiohead's "Reckoner." That wasn't the only surprise, of course. The costume-savvy duo came adorned in dark-mustard-colored suitcoats and coordinated bow ties, while their support band modeled maroon sweater vests and white dress shirts. Visually, it evoked Buddy Holly and made for a clever play on private-school instructors and their geeky charges. If only Juilliard could be so soulful. With Danger Mouse manning the keys and reeling off haunted organ refrains, his partner belted out "Run (I'm a Natural Disaster)," "Blind Mary" and "Who's Gonna Save My Soul" as if possessed by a sinister spirit. Nuggets-era garage rock and gospel dirges framed the singer's dementia. After urging the crowd to lose its mind, the Round Mound of Sound closed out the set on a happy note, putting giant grins on faces everywhere with — what else? — "Smiley Faces."

More Lollapalooza Coverage: Rock 'N' Roll Diary

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Song Stories

“Stillness Is the Move”

Dirty Projectors | 2009

A Wim Wenders film and a rapper inspired the Dirty Projectors duo David Longstreth and Amber Coffmanto write "sort of a love song." "We rented the movie Wings of Desire from Dave's brother's recommendation, and he had me go through it and just write down some things that I found interesting, and they made it into the song," Coffman said. As for the hip-hop connection, Longstreth explained, "The beat is based on T-Pain. We commissioned a radio mix of the song by the guy who mixes all of Timbaland's records, but the mix we made sounded way better, so we didn't use it."

More Song Stories entries »
 
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