"Bad Cover Version" is a song by British rock band Pulp, from their 2001 album We Love Life. It was released 15 April 2002 as the second single from the album, charting at #27 in the UK Singles Chart (see 2002 in British music). It was the band's last single before their eight-year hiatus, which ended in 2011. CD1's B-sides appear as bonus tracks on the US release of We Love Life. The B-sides to CD2 are cover versions of Pulp songs performed by other artists.
The song details the protagonist's belief that his former partner's current relationship is inferior to what she had with him. The latter part of the song is a list of things the narrator likens said relationship to, including The Rolling Stones since the 1980s, the TV adaptation of Planet of the Apes, and later episodes of Tom and Jerry where Tom and Jerry could talk.
Most notable is the reference to and "The second side of 'Til The Band Comes In", a 1970 album by Scott Walker. Walker was the producer of Bad Cover Version, along with the rest of the We Love Life album. 'Til The Band Comes In contains original songs on side 1, and cover songs on side 2. Critical reaction was that the covers let the album down, an opinion which Walker himself has now admitted he shares, stating that the inclusion of covers was a compromise with the record company. Pulp singer and lyricist Jarvis Cocker has stated that the lyrics were written and finalised before he knew that Walker would be involved.
The cover for the single is similar to the cover of David Bowie's famous album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. The child on the cover is in fact Pulp's guitarist Mark Webber.
The song's video features many celebrity lookalikes who gather in a West London studio to perform a "tribute" to Pulp, in a similar style to the video for Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?". All the lookalikes appear to perform their own lines in the style of the artists they are impersonating, with the exception of the Jarvis Cocker lookalike, who is miming to Cocker's vocal. Cocker himself appears in the video dressed as Brian May, playing the guitar notes that ends the song. Kurt Cobain, who died in 1994, is the only impersonated artist who wasn't alive at the time of the song's release.
- The list of impersonated artists
|1.||"Bad Cover Version" (Album Version)||4:10|
|3.||"Forever in My Dreams"||4:23|
|1.||"Bad Cover Version (Video Version)"||3:58|
|2.||"Disco 2000" (Nick Cave version)||Banks, Cocker, Doyle, Mackey, Russell Senior, Webber||5:20|
|3.||"Sorted" (Roisin Murphy version)||Banks, Cocker, Doyle, Mackey, Senior, Webber||6:10|
|1.||"Bad Cover Version (Album Version)" (Audio)|
|2.||"Bad Cover Version" (Video)|
|3.||"Making the Video" (Video)|