The Gloria Jones Challenge – Round 19

The Gloria Jones Challenge is our ongoing examination of the many, many, many covers of Jones’ classic Northern Soul jam “Tainted Love” – to see how they stack up compared to the original.

Today’s challenger gives the song the 3rd wave ska treatment.

But first as always, the original by Gloria Jones.

And now the challenger, Bluekilla.

Postcard Editor: As someone who still appreciates and enjoys ska in the privacy of his own home, far away from the judging eyes of a fickle society, I really want to like this version – but they give such a stock, straight forward and uninspired take on the song that I just can’t. Totally serviceable for a bad teen movie soundtrack from the 90′s, but they take all the fun and swing out of the song without replacing it with anything unique or worthy of their own. As amazing as The English Beat’s take on “Tears of a Clown” is – which is the best comparison of soul to ska that I can think of – this version by Bluekilla is just boring and plodding.

Postcard ChaCha: A nice contender in the Ska category. We’ve heard a few rockabilly versions, but this is the first challenger bringing Ska to the table. They keep it short and sweet, with a driving horn section and the usual Two Tone sound. It works. Much like the rockabilly versions, Tainted Love lends itself well to this genre. That being said, I still don’t feel they’ve done anything original with the song. It’s fun and it’s catchy, but I can’t help but feel like any number of Ska bands could have made this exact same version.

CHALLENGER STANDINGS ACCORDING TO EDITOR:

1. Shades Apart
2. Dave Phillips
3. East German Polka Band
4. Inspiral Carpets
5. My Brightest Diamond
6. Marilyn Manson
7. The Re-Entrants
8. Ruth Swan(n)
9. Coil
10. The Swampy’s
11. Alejandra Guzman
12. Pussycat Dolls
13. Bluekilla
14. Straight No Chaser
15. Impedance
16. Blues MAMA
17. Max Raabe
18. Stella Starlight Trio
19. Access Zero

CHALLENGER STANDINGS ACCORDING TO CHACHA:

1. Dave Phillips
2. Stella Starlight Trio
3. Max Raabe
4. The Re-Entrants
5. My Brightest Diamond
6. Ruth Swan(n)
7. Marilyn Manson
8. East German Polka Band
9. The Swampy’s
10. Inspiral Carpets
11. Bluekilla
12. Alejandra Guzman
13. Shades Apart
14. Pussycat Dolls
15. Blues MAMA
16. Straight No Chaser
17. Coil
18. Access Zero
19. Impedance

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