As one of 2011′s breakout artists, EMA‘s transfixed the music world with Past Life Martyred Saints, her darkly crafted electronic-pop debut. And one of those transfixed is Van Pierszalowski (former Port O’Brien frontman), who now heads up his own solo project called WATERS. Today marks the release of WATERS’ first LP Out in the Light, and to celebrate the occasion and his love for EMA, he let Hive in on this cover of EMA’s disturbing, yet infectious tune “California.”
Hailing from California himself, Pierszalowski says EMA’s tune immediately hit a nerve within, compelling him to do a rock version of the song. “It has this very meditative, but also immediate feel that is almost impossible to pull off,” Pierszalowski tells Hive. “I knew I would never be able to create a similarly earth-stopping version; those lyrics are just so powerful and awesome, that I think they can work in a lot of different contexts.” Beats are traded for guitars, but the immediacy still shines through — when you’re singing about your willingness to die at just 22, it’s hard for it not to.
Out in the Light is out September 20 on TBD.WATERS - California