Don’t mock the cover band, y’all. A good one can not only be highly entertaining, but also turn into a huge success these days — and not just by serving as the most popular human jukebox in their hometowns.
Perfect example: Walk off the Earth.
The incredibly talented, inventive and entertaining group burst onto the scene in one insanely cool moment, and they did it with a song by someone else. When Gotye’s “Somebody that I used to Know” hit the airwaves, everyone got sucked into that obnoxiously depressing voice and oh-so-relatable lyrics. Soon after its release, a new version of the song had everyone talking. Five people gathered around a single acoustic guitar — each “playing” the instrument at the same time — and tore it up, earning more than 35 million views in just two weeks on YouTube (it now has more than 156 million views). Those five smokin’ souls were Walk off the Earth and they’ve been blowing minds ever since.
The Ontario natives quickly made a name for themselves and they continued covering songs with clever and unusual instrumentation and arrangements, their repertoire knowing no boundaries as they bounced from LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem” to “Roll Up” by Wiz Khalifa to Lorde’s “Royals,” played with two kick drums, hand claps and rotating ukuleles.
While it took covers to get the band noticed, Walk off the Earth is so much more. In 2013, they released their third album, R.E.V.O., which included nine strong original songs, plus the famous Gotye cover. The band’s first single from the album, “Red Hands,” made it to the Top 10 in Canada and the Billboard Top 200.
WALK OFF THE EARTH performs Sunday, Jan. 19 at Bogart's. Find ticket and further info here .