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Lala Lala shares a crushed cover of Fugazi’s “I’m So Tired”

The FADER’s transgender charity covers compilation FADER & Friends Volume 1 is out now, available exclusively on Bandcamp until December 1, 2023. 100% of the proceeds go towards the Transgender Law Center, Mermaids, and Rainbow Railroad. Throughout the month of November, we’re speaking to the artists who contributed to the 44-song collection about the songs they covered.

“I’m So Tired” doesn’t sound quite like anything else in Fugazi’s catalog. A song from the soundtrack to the 1999 documentary Instrument, “I’m So Tired” finds Ian MacKaye separated from the other members of the seminal post-hardcore group, sitting by himself at a piano and sounding nearly crushed under the weight of its notes. Lillie Amadea West, the Chicago indie composer known as Lala Lala, immerses herself fully in the song’s hopeless mood for her own piano-driven cover. It’s such a fulsome channeling of the original’s spirit that the addition of the Brian Eno-esque guitar near the cover’s middle seems so natural, it’s as if it was taken from the original song.

Listen to the song below and buy the full album on Bandcamp. Scroll down to read Lala Lala on the original song and her cover.

What’s your first memory of this song?

I was really into The Evens album Get Evens in high school and I think it led me to Fugazi / Ian MacKaye / this recording.

Why did you decide to record it as your cover?

I was moving out of my place in New Mexico and wanted to use the piano I had there, which is extremely sentimental to me and I knew I might not be able to use for a long time / ever again. I thought this song would be simple and perfect.

What does this song mean to you personally?

I just think it’s a perfect song and a perfect recording. I have absolutely no notes. It’s extremely beautiful.

What’s another song you’d love to cover and why?

“Voices Carry” – Til’ Tuesday
“Rangerover” – Porches
“Me (heavy)” – Fred again..
“I Love You Always Forever” – Donna Lewis
“Heart In a Cage” – The Strokes
“You Can Count On Me” – Panda Bear
“Suspended in Gaffa” – Kate Bush