Lindsey Jordan, lead singer and guitarist of Snail Mail, has released an aching-yet-stark cover of "2nd Most Beautiful Girl in the World." The track is available exclusively through Amazon Prime as a free stream and as an MP3 purchase.
The original song is by the band Courtney Love, which was a collaboration between Lois Maffeo and Pat Maley, and not affiliated with the Hole frontwoman. "2nd Most Beautiful Girl in the World" was a B-side from the project's relatively obscure 7'' vinyl Uncrushworthy, released in 1990.
In Jordan's cover, her dragging, intense guitar chords are clear as can be. Her voice is in anguish. She holds out lyrics long enough to prove their significance. The slowed tempo allows for a more intense listen, with gravity being given to her every word.
Jordan performs the song live often, and shared why it resonates with her along with a selection of her favorite songs with The Line of Best Fit:
My friend made me a mixtape with this song on it and the first time I heard it I was really obsessed. It’s recorded in this interesting way, where you can’t really make out what the guitar is playing at all.
It’s maybe one of my favourite songs of all time lyrically. It’s questionably gay, I think it’s actually super gay. We cover it and we’ve just recorded it for a B-Side. Sometimes we play it acoustically and other times we play it with the full band and turn it into a heavy rock song. When I’m in the mood I’ll play it closer to its original quality.
I didn’t really know what she was saying until we were recording it and I had to listen to it closely, but my favourite lyric is “Dream awake / don’t try to make her stay / you know that you’ll give her everything / but she does it anyway.” The lyrics aren’t documented anywhere, there are a few places where she could be saying one thing or another, I have a few guesses but all of them are equally heartbreaking. It’s so real, I think we could play it every night and it would still have that fresh burn. It’s so relatable and gorgeous, all the lyrics are insanely personal and heartbreaking.
I feel completely at one with it up onstage - I don’t want to flatter myself and say I could see myself sitting down and writing it, but I feel if I could take any song and make it a Snail Mail one I’d definitely consider this one.
Snail Mail will tour with Canadian indie-pop band Alvvays until December, and are set to play multiple international festivals in the next few months. They will also open for Interpol at Madison Square Garden in February.
Check out Snail Mail's Zumic artist page for more music, news, and touring information.