The first time I really heard the now-hit “1901” from Phoenix was through La Blogotheque. The acoustic version played there is still my favorite, though I can’t rightly explain why. So recently, when the band played for NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series it seemed right that they would do so acoustically–full instrumentation doesn’t work in a space that small–and that they would naturally play their biggest song.
Not so different from the La Blogotheque version, though lacking the beautiful cinematography, the Tiny Desk version of “1901” follows as one of my favorite acoustic versions of a song and I ripped an mp3 of it to share with all of you.
The surprise of the concert for me was the cover of Air’s “Playground Love” which Phoenix actually released a long while ago and I somehow missed it. Thomas Mars’ vocals take on a whole different air (no pun intended) and softly croons over a simple acoustic guitar. No flourishes, but stark and intimate “Playground Love” is perfect for the small Tiny Desk.
Check out the concert via NPR [here].
Phoenix | 1901 [Tiny Desk Version] [download] (rightclick>saveas…)
Phoenix | Playground Love (Air Cover) [Tiny Desk Version] [download] (rightclick>saveas…)