Peter Gabriel spent the early part of his career dressing up in flower and fox costumes, so it’s not surprising that Fever Ray was obsessed with him growing up—even her gothiest impulses are performative and spectacular, a toned-down electronics child of prog bombast. For her cover of Gabriel’s “Mercy Street,” which he wrote about suicidal poet Anne Sexton and a fairly depressing piece about wandering around Boston, Fever Ray capitalized on the song’s sparseness with electronic wind whooshes and her usual craggy witch voice, sounding like a hundred-year-old crone in the woods. She then enlisted the scariest looking man-monkey known to the natural world to dress up like a French general, sit on a chair and sneer for a portrait, just on some “fun times!” shit. How is it that this chick can take any normal idea, such as a monkey wearing human clothing (the funniest thing ever), and make it legitimately terrifying? Does she have some special demonic eye into the human psyche? Imagine what she’d do with clowns! Her nightmares must be bananas. Original “Mercy Street” after the jump.
Download: Fever Ray, “Mercy Street” (via NME, available until Friday, August 20)