Top 10 Cover Songs that Sound Completely Different Than the Original

It's when it's hard to recognize the original or you do but it still sounds like a different song because the genre or the tone were significantly changed. Music re-construction.

Remember, this list isn't about the best covers or covers better than the original (though some of the cover songs could be). But you can comment on whether you like better the original or the cover.

It's about how different both versions are and if the cover sounds decent - like a "new" song you don't know or without comparing it with the original.

The Top Ten

1 Smells Like Teen Spirit - Tori Amos

Artists with a series of different sounding covers that sound good, are: Tori Amos, Hellsongs, Flametal, Northern Kings. - Metal_Treasure

Tori Amos - allmost all her covers are innovative and unique. I think she takes the cake in this category - making very different covers. And her covers are good. - Metal_Treasure

2 I Should Be So Lucky - Northern Kings

Originally it's a fast upbeat pop song by Kylie Minogue. The cover is very slow and dark, and sounds creepy and threatening. The genre and the tone were changed completely. The style of this cover version is close to doom metal. - Metal_Treasure

3 Raining Blood - Tori Amos

Slayer signature song sounds like... on the song sample. Nothing in common. Probably only the lyrics remind you of the original. Complete transformation. It's a haunting rework. - Metal_Treasure

4 Billie Jean - Chris Cornell

One of my favorite covers of all time (originally by Michael Jackson).
Chris Cornell rendition is incredible - he changed the genre and the style and made the song sound darker and more emotional than the original. I adore Cornell's raspy vox in this song.
This cover has only live versions including the one on the song sample. It's from a live show in Sweden in 2005-6.
R.I.P. Chris. I still forget he died. - Metal_Treasure

5 Run to the Hills - Hellsongs

Iron Maiden classic was fully transformed. Just play the sample - genre and tone were changed completely. The cover sounds vulnerable and not angry. - Metal_Treasure

6 Hurt - Johnny Cash

Originally by Nine Inch Nails. Both versions are well known so no explanation needed. - Metal_Treasure

7 Aces High - Flametal

Iron Maiden instrumental cover flamenco style on flamenco guitars. I actually like this cover - very creative and guitars are very well played by Benjamin Woods. - Metal_Treasure

8 Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - Emily Browning

Thanks Martin. This one is very interesting, too. - Metal_Treasure

Originally by Eurythmics.

The upbeat 80s electro pop song turned into a haunting, surreal yet completely calm nightmare.
It was recorded for the magnificent and horribly underrated movie "Sucker Punch" where it plays during its opening scene, and it really fits the tone of the movie. - Martin_Canine

9 Engel - Annett Louisan

Originally by Rammstein.

In 2016, German chanson singer Annett Louisan released a cover album containing ten covers of popular German songs, adapted in her petite, soft style. Rammstein's signature song "Engel" is one of them, and arguably underwent the biggest genre transformation.
She was inspired by her participation in the third season of the popular show "Sing meinen Song" where a handful of famous German singers are challenged to sing each other's songs. - Martin_Canine

10 Symphony of Destruction - Hellsongs

Originally a metal song by Megadeth. The cover isn't metal and it's with female vocals. The cover sounds rather soothing and beautiful than angry. - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 My Humps - Alanis Morissette

Sounds nothing like the Black Eyed Peas. - Metal_Treasure

12 Master of Puppets - Wisecräcker

This cover of an angry thrash metal song sounds pretty happy in this ska arrangement, LOL.
Well, I recognize the original because I've listened to it a million times but I still can say it's very different. Believe it or not, I like this cover - for making me smile. - Metal_Treasure

13 Billie Jean - Terenzi

Originally by Michael Jackson.
Marc Terenzi, or simply Terenzi, is an American singer but he is known mostly in Germany because he once was married to the wonderful Sarah Connor, and later on was engaged to the model and reality T.V. star Gina Lisa Lohfink. During his marriage with Connor he released two moderately successful albums, then he became a T.V. personality that was mostly known for his former relationships, and he participated in the German edition of "I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here", which is a highly popular and hyped show over here, in 2017 and won. On his second and so far last album he had this pop rock ballad version of Billie Jean. - Martin_Canine

14 Ayo Technology - Milow

Originally by 50 Cent, Timbaland & Justin Timberlake.

While the original version also was a moderate success over here, Belgian singer Milow's version was even bigger two years later, it was almost unavoidable. His version was sung over a very stripped down, minimalistic guitar instrumental, in fact, no one would notice it's the same song apart from the lyrics. - Martin_Canine

15 Womanizer - The All-American Rejects

Britney, what those guys did to your song... - Metal_Treasure

16 Blue Monday - Orgy

New Order cover. - cjWriter1997

17 Wrecking Ball - August Burns Red

Everyone knows the original by Miley Cyrus. For the rest, just play the sample. - Metal_Treasure

18 Smells Like Teen Spirit - Patti Smith
19 Comfortably Numb - Scissor Sisters

I wouldn't recognize it... Thanks, Martin, great addition, very different. But I love the original.
Yep, Bee Gees, and a bit of Relax by Frankie Goes To Hollywood. - Metal_Treasure

Originally by Pink Floyd.

My father, a devoted Pink Floyd fan, didn't initially recognize it. This version is more alike the Bee Gees, an old school disco song with falsetto vocals. - Martin_Canine

20 Mad World - Gary Jules

Much crappier than the original. - jrodz

PSearch List

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Top 10 Cover Songs Better Than the Original Top 10 Cover Songs that Developed the Original Towards Its Logical and Natural Direction Top 10 Cover Songs by Rock and Metal Bands that Were Better Than the Original Top 10 Cover Songs that Change the Genre of the Original Top 10 Songs Where You Most Likely Heard a Cover Version Before the Original

List Stats

53 listings
148 days old

Top Remixes

1. Engel - Annett Louisan
2. Ayo Technology - Milow
3. Billie Jean - Terenzi
1. I Should Be So Lucky - Northern Kings
2. Smells Like Teen Spirit - Tori Amos
3. Run to the Hills - Hellsongs



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