“Get Lucky” isn’t a song, it’s an audio patch for errors in the human soul. It’s the ’70s filtered through four more decades of audio technology to resonate with the groove center of the human brain. And to install one if it’s lacking. A year later the spotlight has moved on, along with all the children who still think it’s cool to say they don’t like wonderful things. So we’ve found five new ways to get into this groove without wearing it out.
And they are…
The internet is a clogged sewer, always overflowing with the results of people digesting something fresh and new and immediately plopping out their own inferior results. The worst are those re-recording the latest hit to talk about their own favorite fandom. YouTube groans under the weight (and quality) of this army of clones. And just like in Star Wars, these thoughtless copies can overwhelm the few with the force to do good.
A truly talented cover can completely change the nature of the song without altering a single world. And Halestorm are very talented.
If the electronic beat of “Get Lucky” ever has to summon a giant robotic body to punch out aliens, this is it. This is “Get Lucky” as a battle cry. Daft Punk partied on the beach, but when Halestorm arrived it was a cliff and they pounded it into powder. This hard rock upgrade sees the same song from a kick ass lady who’s out “Get Lucky” and god help your ass if it gets in her way. They solve the existential paradox of sounding nothing like the original while sounding exactly like the original, and they solve it the way rock solves every problem: by rocking harder.
Scott Bradlee & Postmodern Jukebox
Halestorm altered the meaning of the song, but the Postmodern Jukebox inverts it entirely. The song of the summer becomes an Irish wake. The same words become Celtic cries of mourning desperation, all the passion is poured into tears instead of heat. No matter how many times you’ve heard the original, you’ve never heard anything like this.
Best of all, it still serves the song’s deepest truth. Because at 2:40 the original beat breaks through. Even the most downcast land simply can’t stay sad when it’s time to “Get Lucky,” and even the most alternate instruments can transmit pure joy. If this had been a wake even the guest of honor would have gotten up to dance.
Listen to Scott Bradlee & Postmodern Jukebox.
Russian Police Choir
The Russian Police Choir opened the Olympics with “Get Lucky,” and it was such a ridiculous success it may have been a ploy to prevent people from taking Russian uniforms seriously.
Where the original chorus was an odd to happiness, the Russian chorus is a 21-gun artillery of harmony.
There were two types of singer in the choir. The first proved “Get Lucky” transcends language, training, even culture, as the actual embodiment of structured group behavior in adherence to strict regulation started swaying and grooving to the beat. The second was stone-faced but pitch-perfect, proving that they would do anything in full public view for the motherland no matter what the consequences. We maybe should have paid more attention to the latter group.
They jerked and swayed like they’d stolen the original French schematics for disco but still haven’t translated them properly. And still sounded glorious.
Evolution of “Get Lucky”
PV Nova is an education for every YouTuber who thinks one idea is worth five minutes of video with ten minutes of introduction. He has ten ideas and crams them into four minutes.
The song scans an entire decade of “Get Lucky” covers and this temporal analysis perfectly reveals the true nature of the song. It’s like a Gaussian curve of groove, resonating perfectly at the peak of “70s style. Each snippet of century encapsulates their era, and any “80s survivors should beware flashback to synthesizers and confrontationally spoken words. The masterpiece is extending the sound into the future with minimalist drum and bass, synchronizing modern musical trends with the quiet tail end of the original song. He condenses more time into more fun than The Doctor.
Every cloud has a silver lining, and Pentatonix make up for all of talent show history. The band was formed in an attempt to win a local radio amateur competition to meet the cast of Glee, and if that sounds like a recipe for pure sonic poison, they made the antidote.
It’s a medley of Daft Punk songs, which is even better than just “Get Lucky,” because if there’s a more perfect song for a cappella than “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” I haven’t heard it. Because a more perfect song for improving any human ability than “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” doesn’t exist.
The video inverts the visual style of Daft Punk, using technology to make sure you can see their eyes as terrifyingly clearly as possible.
Except for Kevin Olusola, who hybridized Daft Punk with Geordi La Forge to create incredible TRON shades. And Kirstie Maldonado looks like the kind of alien princess who’d have Captain Kirk handing over the keys to the enterprise just for the chance of touching her glitter.
It’s the kind of a cappella that makes you think it’s a pity they’re using a drum machine until you realize they aren’t. Until now Daft Punk unplugged sounded like a stupid joke. Now it’s sonic joy. And only gets better the more often you hear it.
Did we miss any superior versions of this song? Let us know in the comments!
Luke McKinney writes about games, drink, science, and everything else that makes life amazing. He’s a columnist on Cracked and writes for several beer magazines. He’s also available for hire. Follow him on Tumblr and Twitter @lukemckinney.