The Almost didn’t stray too far, geographically speaking, for their contribution to the upcoming compilation Punk Goes Classic Rock. The Clearwater, Florida, quintet covered fellow Floridian Tom Petty’s 1989 classic “Free Fallin.'” Hear an exclusive stream right here!
LISTEN: The Almost, “Free Fallin”
“We always came back to Tom Petty,” guitarist Jay Vilardi tells SPIN.com. “He’s an easy choice for us, the ultimate argument ender.”
The Almost’s version of “Free Fallin'” employs a bit of polished production, but beyond that, doesn’t stray far from the original. “To us, the song is flawless,” says Vilardi. “Butchering the work of one of our collective idols would be a real ‘heartbreaker.'”
The band — fronted by Underoath drummer Aaron Gillespie — has covered the iconic Petty track during their shows, and their love affair for the Gainesville rocker extends back into childhood. “Hopefully, if we ever met, we could all have a drink and tell him what a pleasure it was recording and releasing a song we grew up playing air guitar to in our bedrooms,” Vilardi says.
Check out this video of the band recording their Petty cover at Hurley Studios in California:
Punk Goes Classic Rock, out April 27 on Fearless Records, also features We the Kings covering .38 Special’s “Caught Up in You,” the Maine covering Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar on Me,” and Forever the Sickest Kids covering Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train.” To see the full track listing, check out the album’s MySpace page.