belated Tunes: Frank Ocean, “Strawberry Swing”

What happens when a “cool” artist uses the instrumental of a band whom it is equally “cool” to dislike?

Enter emerging R&B slickster and Odd Future member Frank Ocean and his version of Coldplay’s “Strawberry Swing.” What was a simple pop love song under Chris Martin and co.’s direction is transformed into a wide-armed apocalyptic dreamscape of sorts once Ocean gets his hands on it. The warped “oh-ah” echoes in the opening seconds set the pace for a song in which Ocean accepts his fate with tangible sadness and joyful reminiscence. While this certainly isn’t an original end of the world vision, there’s something precious about this track. And Ocean actually uses Martin’s original vocals rather deftly here. Less excusable is the 40-second alarm clock outro.

If you like what you hear, download Frank Ocean’s debut album Nostalgia, Ultra here, for free, originally released on his tumblr. You may or may not also enjoy the Eagles (“American Wedding”) and MGMT (“Nature Feels”) samples…