The Shins, the acclaimed pop project of songwriter James Mercer, have won the hearts of many, building strongly from the early releases on indie luminaries Sub Pop Records to the recent, deeply intimate album, Heartworms. They did the unexpected when they re-recorded every song on the album in a completely different style and reversed the running order for The Worms Heart released last month.
This split 12” titled Los Lobos vs. The Shins features three distinct versions of their song, the Fear; the original booming, sweeping track from Heartworms; the second kinetic “flipped” version from The Worm’s Heart; and the final rendition, heavy on the heartstrings, is from buddy-band Los Lobos, which took vital form while the two groups played out together. In Mercer’s words, Los Lobos “just destroyed our version.”
“The top-line melody remains intact, but everything else - the instrumentation, tempo - is altered.” -the Guardian