We review the new single from Berries – Dance Song ’97

London trio Berries pay tribute to one of their biggest influences with a cover of ‘Dance Song ‘97’ taken from Sleater-Kinney’s breakthrough record ‘Dig Me Out’.

It comes as part of a celebration compilation for legendary label Kill Rock Stars’ 30th anniversary in which 40 bands and artists from around the world cover tracks from KRS’ extensive back catalogue. And this feels like the perfect fit.

As covers go it’s not a million miles away from the original, which makes sense considering bands like Sleater-Kinney are such an inspiration to the trio’s rock, grunge and indie style. Indeed, Berries’ trademark angular guitars match the off-kilter sound of the original – but it’s far from a carbon copy.

This cover feels much more measured and paced than Sleater-Kinney’s. Running longer too at over three minutes, it allows you to really soak up the lustful lyrics, punchy drums and spiralling guitar licks throughout. Perhaps a more poppy take on the track, there’s a gorgeous breakdown at around the 2 minute mark which is a great addition.

Vocals from Holly are rich and mellow (as are the harmonies) which contrasts to Corin Tucker’s intentionally harsh delivery. But while it may lack that urgency, it certainly retains the desire of the original.
“if you’re going way too hard / if you’re feeling way too much / but inside you can’t stop / desire she eats you up”

There’s a clear passion in this cover, excitement, and celebration for the original artists that shines through. It’s pretty groovy too.