Taylor Swift’s new album isn’t the only surprise release of the week: Chris Cornell’s estate has dropped a full album of covers performed by the late Soundgarden frontman called “No One Sings Like You Anymore,” which the announcement describes as Cornell’s “handpicked collection of 10 cover songs, which he personally selected and sequenced to celebrate artists and songs that inspired him.”
Recorded in 2016, the collection, which is his last fully completed studio album, features songs by a diverse selection of artists, spanning several decades. They include John Lennon’s “Watching The Wheels,” Ghostland Observatory’s “Sad Sad City,” Harry Nilsson’s “Jump Into The Fire,” Carl Hall’s “You Don’t Know Nothing About Love,” Electric Light Orchestra’s “Showdown,” Terry Reid’s “To Be Treated Rite”, Lorraine Ellison’s “Stay With Me Baby” (originally released for HBO’s show Vinyl), “Get It While You Can,” popularized by Janis Joplin, and a new studio recording of “Nothing Compares 2 U,” written by Prince.
The renditions vary between faithful-to-the-original (such as “Jump Into the Fire,” apart from a sweeping new bridge) and drastically different (a beatbox and synthesizer-inflected take on the Lennon song; the opening “Get It While You Can”). The album closes on a bittersweet note with Ellison’s “Stay With Me Baby,” which was a signature song for Bette Midler’s tragic rock-star character in the 1979 film “The Rose.”
Cornell’s cover of Guns N’ Roses “Patience,” which was released on his birthday this year, is also included on the album.
All instruments on “No One Sings Like You Anymore” were played by Chris Cornell and Brendan O’Brien, who also produced and mixed the album.
The album’s release was teased with a social media post on Wednesday.
No One Sings Like You Anymore pic.twitter.com/SC9WTrea3o
— Chris Cornell (@chriscornell) December 10, 2020
“This album is so special because it is a complete work of art that Chris created from start to finish,” says Cornell’s widow, Vicky. “His choice of covers provides a personal look into his favorite artists and the songs that touched him. He couldn’t wait to release it. This moment is bittersweet because he should be here doing it himself, but it is with both heartache and joy that we share this special album.
“All of us could use his voice to help heal and lift us this year, especially during the holiday season,” she continued. “I am so proud of him and this stunning record, which to me illustrates why he will always be beloved, honored, and one the greatest voices of our time.”
Cornell’s daughter Toni added, “When my dad was making this album, it was so fun – I remember waking up in the morning, having breakfast with him and going with him into the studio. We would take our piano lessons there, and Christopher would play video games with Brendan and my dad. We got to experience so much with him and have so many amazing memories. I’m really happy to be sharing this album. We love you, daddy.”
Christopher Cornell said, “We had so much fun in the studio during this time, and on days off we’d go to Tree People and hike around there. We would also play hide and go seek inside the Beverly Hills Hotel and when security would show up they would think it was so funny that my dad was running through fire escapes with us. For me this album represents who my dad was. I’m really proud of him and his work. I hope you all love this record as much as I do.”
Toni is a singer-songwriter as well, and Cornell’s daughter Lily, from his first marriage to former Soundgarden manager Susan Silver, made her public performing debut last week at a MoPop tribute to Alice in Chains, whom Silver has managed for their entire career.
The physical album will be released on March 19th.
“No One Sings Live You Anymore” Track List
- Get It While You Can
- Jump Into The Fire
- Sad Sad City
- Nothing Compares 2 U
- Watching The Wheels
- You Don’t Know Nothing About Love
- To Be Treated Rite
- Stay With Me Baby