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(Credit: Michael Cera Palin)

Music

When Michael Cera Palin covered Sheryl Crow live

@notmyyaztattoo

You might not know very much about the cheekily-named band from Atlanta, Georgia, but you’ll likely recognise a lot in the post-emo sound of their 2018 EP, I Don’t Know How to Explain It. 

The band has been making music since 2015, and came back in 2020 after a brief hiatus. Although their music speaks to a sort of Modern-Baseball-Front-Bottoms-Mom-Jeans quality of the contemporary spin on Midwest emo math rock, they have one surprising song that gained them quite a lot of traction on the aforementioned 2018 EP.

One of the surprising details of the track is that given the gen-z audience, many people took it for an original twinkly emo song without too much afterthought. But for those who remember the early aughts mom mini van music, there might be something familiar lurking beneath the surface.

Yep, that’s right. Michael Cera Palin’s most popular track is none other than their cover of Sheryl Crow‘s ‘If It Makes You Happy’, styled and composed to seamlessly blend with their sound. It’s no wonder the song was able to trick so many people, as even the lyrics can make a case for their place within the emo sound.

However, as with any music of this style, it really was made to be enjoyed live, which is exactly why this footage of the band performing their cover live at a chilled-out backyard show is so incredible. These guys aren’t bigshot celebrities (although even those who are within this genre tend to prefer not to think of themselves as such). They joke around, tune up mid-set, and capture their live shows on iPhone footage. And they wouldn’t have it any other way.

Not only is this a musically competent cover that has plenty of creative easter eggs, but it feels like an invite-only house show (an if you know, you know type of deal) and that’s a part of what gives it that spark.

If you want to see a live version of perhaps the coolest Midwest emo cover of Sheryl Crow, you can watch Michael Cera Palin tear it up below.