Perfume Genius’ No Shape is one of our favorite albums of 2017. One song which lead singer Mike Hadreas frequently performs live that’s not on the record is his cover of “Body’s In Trouble,” the 1988 song from Canadian artist Mary Margaret O’Hara.
The song is a rather formless, atmospheric track that sounds moody and ethereal with Hadreas’ spin. He wrote of the song in Stereogum‘s report:
“I started covering this song on tour almost immediately after hearing it for the first time. I was so struck by her command and presence even though she weaves in and out of being present. Her vocal is somehow on the rhythm and completely around it, lyrics and chords are repeated throughout but there is no real center. There are brief moments where the music fully connects in a traditional way but after a few listens the most satisfying part is the song’s magic formlessness. I wouldn’t dare try to mimic or recapture her performance, but I tried to sing in the same wandering, mantra-like way – but taking it somewhere a little more sinister. I’ve lost count of how many times I use the word “body” in my songs.
My relationship with my own body is confusing and I use music to try and puzzle it out, or as rebellion against needing a form at all. Playing this cover onstage every night I use her lyric to phase in and out of both of those ideas.”
He performed the cover during a Spotify session, where he also did a recording of his song “Slip Away.”
You can listen to the original version O’Hara below: