With each passing week, we’re getting new ’80s covers from American singer-songwriter Angel Olsen as part of her upcoming EP Aisles. Eventually, we’re just going to get the whole damn thing, but today we have Olsen’s take on Billy Idol’s ‘Eyes Without a Face’.
The two tracks we’ve already heard from Aisles were Olsen’s covers of Men Without Hats’ ‘Safety Dance’ and Laura Branigan’s ‘Gloria’. Both were gloriously melodramatic takes on their respective original’s synth ’80s gloss, but Olsen’s cover of ‘Eyes Without a Face’ is the closest that the singer has kept to the original recording’s sound yet.
‘Eyes Without a Face’ was Idol’s first top ten hit in America. Idol’s first album had classic tunes like ‘Dancing With Myself’ and ‘White Wedding (Pt. 1)’, but they weren’t smashes. ‘Eyes Without a Face’ broke Idol into the mainstream and would set the stage for his later smashes ‘Cradle of Love’ and ‘Mony Mony’.
Olsen’s take is similar to her other covers from Aisles so far, but the main difference is that ‘Eyes Without a Face’ already plays into the breathy, robotically detached noir style that Olsen is bringing to this project.
All that’s left now are Olsen’s covers of ‘If You Leave’ by Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark and ‘Forever Young’ by Alphaville. ‘Forever Young’ is prime ballad territory for Olsen, and it will fit nicely within the established sound of Aisles, but ‘If You Leave’ will likely be an interesting departure from the uptempo synth-pop of the original.
Check out the audio for Olsen’s cover of ‘Eyes Without a Face’ down below. Aisles is set for a release this Friday, August 20.