Chewed Up: Listen to Lower Dens’ masterful cover of a Hall & Oates classic

January 11, 2015 - Baltimore, MD - Musician Jana Hunter of the band Lower Dens photographed in her home (Frank Hamilton)

When I was a young child, my family took me on a ski trip somewhere up in either Vermont or upstate New York. After a day on the slopes, we retreated to the resort lounge for some hot chocolate and after-dinner snacks. There was a band playing covers in a far corner of the room as families socialized and ignored them, and with confidence and swagger I cannot explain even years later, I sauntered up to the band and requested they play “Maneater” by Hall & Oates. They rolled their eyes and told me no.

Two decades later, the rejection still on my brain, I’m finally glad they didn’t play it, because it certainly couldn’t touch this new rendition by Baltimore’s Lower Dens.

The cover is the latest offering from The Time Is Now, the Foundation for AIDS Research’s amfAR charity compilation, which was announced last week via Scarlett Johansson’s Sugar for Sugar reboot of “Bizarre Love Triangle”. The Time Is Now is out October 7 (via Republic Records/Mass Appeal Records), and also features ’80s covers by Phantogram (Phil Collins), Metric (the Church), DNCE (Tina Tuner), Aloe Blacc (Michael Jackson), and more.

Peep the full tracklist after absorbing Lower Den’s masterful take below, and catch up on our April 2015 interview with John Oates.

The Time is Now, for amfAR
01. “Take Me Home” (Phil Collins) — Phantogram
02. “Bizarre Love Triangle” (New Order) — Sugar for Sugar
03. “Under The Milky Way” (The Church) — Metric
04. “Whip It” (Devo) — Brazilian Girls
05. “Rio” (Duran Duran) — Bebel Gilberto
06. “What’s Love Got to Do With It” (Tina Turner) — DNCE
07. “Billie Jean”(Michael Jackson) — Aloe Blacc
08. “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” (Culture Club) — Dita Von Teese and Sebastien Tellier
09. “Maneater” (Hall & Oates) — Lower Dens
10. “Genius of Love” (Tom Tom Club) — Chaos Chaos and Slow Magic
11. “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)” (Whitney Houston) — Marian Hill
12. “Pride (In the Name of Love)” (U2) — LP
13. “Lovesong” (The Cure) — Yuna
14. “Dance Hall Days” (Wang Chung) — Theophilus London