The Byrds / Husker Du – “Eight Miles High” (1966/1984)

Eight miles high, and when you touch down
You’ll find that it’s stranger than known
Signs in the street, that say where you’re going
Are somewhere just being their own

Nowhere is there warmth to be found
Among those afraid of losing their ground
Rain gray town, known for its sound
In places, small faces unbound

Round the squares, huddled in storms
Some laughing, some just shapeless forms
Sidewalk scenes, and black limousines
Some living, some standing alone

From the wiki: “Critics often cite ‘Eight Miles High’ as being the first bona fide psychedelic rock song, as well as a classic of the counterculture era.”

From an amateur reviewer at Rate Your Music: “This, the best single ever released, starts with a pronged phrase that is more or less faithful to the 12-stringed intro of the ‘60s original. But don’t be taken in by this because all too soon it will head off in a completely different direction. Within moments Grant’s tribal toms are in the fray and it’s obvious a war’s being declared — a marathon battle to stave off the worst come-down imaginable, an amphetamine-starved psyche crashing after a four year binge. In any case, what we’re talking about here is the essence of perdition.”

I should add that, as the original was to psychedelic rock, this cover was to post-hardcore. It was one of the first shots.

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