Covert Stations, the fledgling band collaborative of Craig Cirinelli and a revolving cast of musicians, shakes the sheets from the window on their rendition of The Cult’s long-standing arena anthem, She Sells Sanctuary from 1985’s Love album, for their second cover single. Shake the sheets they do, as this cover flies their sincerity high, while feeling darker and more propulsive (black, ripped, satin sheets perhaps?).

With dropped tuning in an effective, non-tacky way, along with a celebratory, full-throttle urgency, Covert Stations took cues on further detail such as a nod to the originator’s live intro, leading off the song via droning instrumentation and a vocal build, then blasting into “hit single” fashion. Everything just feels perfect, just a little different. Perhaps the strongest moment of this cover is their dive into a surging breakdown near the three-quarters mark. The vocals throughout remain sung from the mountaintop as originally delivered yet gain grit as time ticks forward into the tune. This is a pure studio gem circa 2022, harkening to a studio gem of thirty-plus years ago.

In “band mode” with Craig Cirinelli (Damn This Desert Air) on this cover is Keith D, most known as band leader of the super-saturated, brooding sound of Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s, Arctic Sleep, who provided drums, guitars, and keys. Filling out the low end is Kevin Baker on bass, who is a long-time member of Baltimore, Maryland’s The Mayan Factor.

Covert Stations launched earlier this year with a rendition of The Psychedelic FursLove My Way.  Although details on what the entity’s song of choice have not yet been revealed, we were told tracking is already complete and in the mixing hands of Chris Badami at Portrait Recording Studios. This series is evolving, and more is on the way.

Says the band of the new track: “Our studio take on She Sells Sanctuary is a tribute to one of this particular line-up’s favorite eighties rock bands, The Cult. Were we a little young when this came out? Sure. Yes and no. Well, just a little—we each have gray hairs weaving through our brown hairs if that tells you something. We weren’t “of legal age” when this song hit the scene, we were in our youth. I wasn’t even in double digits when the band itself formed. Yet this is a testament to how rock transcends. That’s what rock education is about. The Cult—what a band—a crossover within the hard rock world of the eighties, combining goth and post-punk with metal and glam like a melting pot. Some bands become history books. We believe The Cult is one of those bands.”

Our own eighties throwback, Michael Stronge, has listened to both tracks and has this to say on the matter: ‘What I like most about Covert Stations thus far is their ability to understand what makes the essence of these great tracks well, great. They harness that greatness but augment it with a respectful modern filter that really does re-energise the music without in any way taking away from what made them great in the first place. Bravo chaps and I look forward to hearing what they come up with next!”