Tune du Jour: “Kiss Off” – Violent Femmes
THE CLASH of Cover Tunes: The Dresden Dolls vs. Etiquette vs. Los Delinquentes
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Eight, Eight, I Forget What Eight Was For …



Kiss Off just might be the best song off of the Violent Femmes self-titled debut album, which just might be the best album of the ’80s!



The Original


Violent Femmes:


THE CLASH of Cover Tunes


The Dresden Dolls vs. Etiquette vs. Los Delinquentes
The Dresden Dolls:

That’s Mick Harvey on guitar and Brian Ritchie of the Violent Femmes, dwelling somewhere in the background, on bass.


Los Delinquentes:

Todo Me Da Igual (“Kiss Off”):


Oh the disharmony! Much like Harlan County there are no neutrals here. It is your solemn responsibility to decide which cover song prevails. In other words … Which Side Are You On?!!? 


Disclaimer: Votes cast from Florida may or may not be counted.

  1. Arnold Plotnick says:

    The Violent Femmes will forever be in the list of bands whose first album was arguably their best. And rightfully so. Although most people list “Add it Up” as the most angsty song on the album (because of the “why can’t I get just one fuck” line, I think Kiss Off is tops it. The Dresden Dolls do a good version, but is it a “true” cover when one of the members of the cover band is a member of the original band? I rely on Richie to divulge the criteria for “cover” song. The lead singer of the Dresden Dolls certainly seems full of angst, however, her voice is just average, perhaps even on the shitty side. Etiquette’s lead singer is a Gordon Gano soundalike, although I do like how they vary some of the melody, it’s pretty much a straight cover. Los Deliquentes do the best version here, I think. Captures the desperation of the song better than the rest.

  2. Kerry Black says:

    I never bought this album (or anything else by Violent Femmes) but I knew several people who did, so I was able to hear it a fair amount back in the day. While I consider it a strong debut, I was a bit surprised to see Dubbs write: “… might be the best album of the ’80s!” Discuss among yourselves…

    • RDubbs says:

      Many years ago I put forth that assertion to your brother Pete. I figured it was red meat that he’d relish tearing into. Instead he said simply that I might be right. Go figure.

      I’d still put the masterpiece that the Violent Femmes’ debut album is up against any album of the 80’s that I could think of. Yesterday I even took a peek at Rolling Stones’ 100 Best Albums of the 80’s to test my claim and did not find anything that I’d consider superior. Although I don’t know that RS’s list merits much validity. First of all, London calling is listed as number one. If London Calling actually qualified then I would be 100% behind it sitting atop the list. But London Calling was released in December 1979 in the UK. It was not released in the US until January 1980, which perhaps is their weak reasoning for including it with the 80’s. And there’s another reason to be skeptical of their list. The Violent Femmes debut album did not even make their top 100 list. I’m not sure if that is more funny or pathetic!

      • Arnold Plotnick says:

        I really hadn’t thought about the entire ’80’s… that’s a tough call. Violent Femmes album as best of the entire decade. Hmmm… you’re treading into dangerous territory, Richie.

  3. RDubbs says:

    I’m sure I’ll get a whole load of disparaging remarks from bassists for this criteria but as long as a song does not include the original band’s lead singer or lead guitarist then, yes, for the purposes of CMI it qualifies as a cover. I’ll probably also receive a thrashing from drummers for this determination. But shit, everyone knows that drummers are all a bunch of ass-tailors so who gives a damn for what they think.

    I LOVE this song and think highly of all three of these covers (as well as a few other covers that will just have to wait their turn to shine). Etiquette’s version is quite creative and Las Deliquentes knocks out a fine cover as well. The more I see of The Dresden Dolls the more intrigued I become. I’m not interested in acquiring their cds but would jump at the chance to see them live. The Singer’s voice is rough but that works just fine for this cover. They got my vote.

    As an aside, if you like The Dresden Dolls’ take then look them up on YouTube. They actually performed a whole show of Violent Femmes songs, which is where this cut was lifted from.

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