Azealia Banks Inexplicably Turns the Strokes' 'Barely Legal' Into Club Bait

Also sets single release date, records with Ariel Pink

Azealia Banks the Strokes' 'Barely Legal' Cover
Azealia Banks and the Strokes' Julian Casablancas / Photos by Getty Images
Chris Martins WRITTEN BY
Chris Martins

We long for the day when Azealia Banks stops stirring the pot of inexplicability and just. releases. some. freaking. music. already. The fact that she pissed off some #SEAPUNKS wasn't really her fault, and it's fair to say that Angel Haze bullied her into what SPIN's since deemed the Worst Beef Ever. But those two events seemed to kickstart the Harlem MC's love for high headline placement whatever the cost, and we've since experienced her unfortunate philosophy on gay slurs, a whole bunch of bullshit about the latest dance craze we'd just as soon forget, and even a fizzled Twitter beef with — yech — Karmin.

While we're kinda happy to report that today's piece is indeed about music, we're less than pleased to have to explain that Banks has taken the Strokes' wonderfully muddy Is This It highlight "Barely Legal" and transformed the garage rock nugget into a bouncy club cut powered by synth gush and trappy drums. It's not a particularly offensive cover, but it is, without a doubt, utter novelty — like every late-'90s radio rock act recording acoustic covers of rap songs. Oddly, Banks' latest attempt to turn something genuinely interesting into a garish distraction has precedent. In 2010 she covered Interpol's "Slow Hands." Who's next, the Vines?

In other news that we're not sure how to interpret, Pitchfork reports that this former SPIN cover star has been consorting with our recent feature subject Ariel Pink and that a collaboration between the two is in the works. They've even shared studio time together according to Banks' never dull Twitter account. We have, however, saved the best for last: Azealia has confirmed a release date for the first single from her long-delayed debut LP. "Yung Rapunxel," which is produced by friend-to-hackers-everywhere Lil Internet, will hit iTunes on March 26 via Interscope. Time to make good.

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