Smile Politely

Covering The Great Cover-Up: Night #3

The third and final night of this year’s Great Cover-Up has come and gone, so let’s get straight to work.

Reds (above) took the stage in a swell of smoke and colors, playing Depeche Mode’s European version of electro-synth pop. The crowd didn’t really seem to know who the band was covering, and the dreaded standing half-circle formed in front of the stage. Although it might have taken some warming up to get the crowd going, the music was definitely club worthy.


Mad Mardigan (above) decided to take a more classic approach by covering the psychedelic blues jams of Cream. Throughout the set there was a dominant purple color scheme that was absolutely appropriate for the music, and the half-circle had disappeared.


Something that really hasn’t been seen in this year’s Cover-Up came out tonight in the form of punk music. Getting a couple of thrashers in the crowd, Roberta Sparrow (above; feat. Ward Gollings on lead vocals) covered Descendents to get everyone a little rowdy.


Then came JigGsaw (above), double dosing the punk by covering Rancid, sounding straight out of Southern California themselves. Their enthusiasm and reggae rhythms clearly translated well to the audience.


Next, crowding the stage to full capacity with a trumpet, trombone, cello, violin, turntable and all the other usual suspects, Darling Disarm (above) brought the full sound of Portishead to the stage. The whole band sounded great together, especially when they got loud, and lead singer Kayla Brown has a great voice.


And finally, the finale of the whole event, elsinore (above) took the stage, complete with turntables and horn section. The place was as full as I had seen it on any of the nights, and when they saw/heard Beck take the stage, the crowd went wild. Sticking to Beck’s party tracks, the crowd had plenty of chances to wave their hands in the air, and they did multiple times. It was an awesome show.


So, that concludes the 17th year of Urbana-Champaign’s Great Cover-Up and a very successful one it was. Check out the videos, look at the pictures, cherish the memories.


[Ed. note: Endless thanks to everyone who helped us “cover the Cover-Up” this year — we are indebted to our staff writers, videographers, and photographer David Cubberly, as well as all the performing artists, to Jimmie Myers, and especially to Ward Gollings (right), the man who makes it all happen. We’ll see you next year.]

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