Hovvdy – Covers 2

Hoovdy is an Austin indie pop duo and one of the proponents of “pillow-core” — a subgenre they’ve jokingly came up with but one that makes sense in the context of their musical aesthetic. Charlie Martin and Will Taylor’s work focuses on downtempo songs with a knack for muffled textures, sweet riffs and vocals that seemingly breeze through the airy instrumentation. 

They released their second collection of covers near the end of 2020 as a surprise EP. Simply called Covers 2, this name alludes to their previous Covers EP, which found Hovvdy and Lomelda performing renditions of each other’s music. This time, the new offering features four tracks from songs of various well-known artists, released as a thank you for all the support their fans have given them this year.

“Warning Sign” opens the EP with a fresh take on an early Coldplay song. A bold choice, considering the popularity of the band but it works well here. Hovvdy re-contextualizes the song with their warm and faded lo-fi melodies and effects, resulting in a new imagining that frames it as if it were released in the bedroom pop era. 

The second track “claws” by Charli XCX flips the previous one on its head. Where the original is the quintessential digi pop song of the modern era, Hovvdy gives it the acoustic guitar and drum treatment that gives the song a more grounded feel.

“The Only Exeption” from paramore is a song that doesn’t need much introduction. This lovely ballad is given an experimental treatment with minimalist strings and a slide guitar. The outcome is bright and airy, but still preserves the pained undertone of the original. 

And finally we have “Hear Me Out” by frou frou. The original was already ahead of its time during its release, and one of the few pop songs that still sounds modern to this day. This is perfect for the band as it lends itself well to their hushed and gentle tones. I would say this is one of the more natural songs that fits like a glove for pillowcore.

Covers 2 is a short EP that breezes through in fourteen minutes but it packs quite a huge effect. Perfect for the end of the day when you want things to slow down or take a cup of tea. And for the uninitiated, this is a great gateway to Hovvdy’s other material.

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