Ten Artists Sounding Uncannily Similar to Other Artists


Welcome to our little homage to musical homage. The following ten artists, whether by willful attempt or sheer happenstance, managed to pull off amazingly credible imitations of more notable musical acts. They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. We’ll let you decide:

Dave Kerzner: “Stranded”

This Dark Side-era Pink Floyd sound-alike couldn’t possibly have happened by accident. Kerzner’s 2014 New World album, though it literally and figuratively shows its influences on its sleeve, is actually an outstanding progressive rock record in its own right. But “Stranded”, more than any song I’ve ever heard, shows an artist who’s assimilated the Floydian musical vocabulary.



Lissie: “Further Away (Romance Police)”

Late-70’s Fleetwood Mac is revisited by singer-songwriter Lissie, complete with the Lindsey Buckingham guitar and Stevie Nicks vocals.


Ali Thomson: “Take a Little Rhythm”

You may remember this #15 hit from 1980. If so, you almost surely thought it was Paul McCartney because it perfectly mimicked the sound of his late-70’s hits, not to mention the Tom Scott sax solo of “Listen to What the Man Said” and the prominence of the bass guitar in the mix. And also because who the hell is Ali Thomson?


Jeremy Fisher: “Scar That Never Heals”

With all the stories floating around about Paul Simon cribbing musically from other artists it’s good to see another singer so “inspired” by Paul. Or so it sounds to me.



Kingdom Come: “Get it On”

This one’s just brazen. From John Bonham’s thunderous drum sound to Robert’s Plant’s wail to a riff that, to say the very least, “evokes” Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir”…come on, guys. I mean, that sound is taken. Get your own.


Tyler Ramsey: “Stay Gone”

Neil Young is channeled on this one, though it’s not clear if Tyler Ramsey consciously does so. I hear echoes here of some of young Neil’s early 70’s tunes such as “Winterlong”.



Band of Horses: “Long Vows”

Again with the Neil Young! Band of horses sound like they got hold of a Zuma outtake here. In a good way.


UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1970: Photo of Simon and Garfunkel Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Kings of Convenience: “Homesick”

The Norwegian duo known as Kings of Convenience capture the close harmonies and intimate spare sound of “Scarborough Fair”-period Simon & Garfunkel on this one. Or as their own words in this very song describe it “two soft voices, blended in perfection”.


Accept: “Balls to the Wall”

It seems in the world of 80’s metal you could scrape out a bit of a career merely by imitating an iconic act. Since their red hot career has presumably cooled off by now (unless like Spinal Tap they’re enjoying a revival in Japan) I wonder if it’s occurred to no-hit wonder Accept–and to the previously mentioned Kingdom Come for that matter–that there’s always a living to be made as a tribute band? Who could better fill the AC/DC void now that Brian Johnson has called it quits?



Tin Tin: “Toast and Marmalade for Tea”

In case you’re not conversant with late-60’s pop, or old enough to remember that the Bee Gees had quite a successful career before anyone had ever heard of disco, Aussie duo Tin Tin was pretty much exactly what the Gibb brothers sounded like from about 1968 to ’72. It’s not a shock that Maurice Gibb produced the quaint “Toast and Marmalade for Tea”, Tin Tin’s only U.S. top 40 hit and a long-forgotten chestnut. It carries the stately sound of contemporaneous Bee Gees hits such as “Lonely Days” and “I’ve Gotta Get a Message to You”.

Recommended Albums #62


Dave Kerzner: New World (2014)

Pink Floyd fans starved for good new material, rejoice!

American producer/songwriter/keyboardist Dave Kerzner has given you the next best thing to a decent new Pink Floyd record that you’re likely to hear, and a work far more engaging than Floyd’s mostly-instrumental Endless River, also released in 2014.

kerznerThe co-founder of progressive rock band Sound of Contact, Kerzner has produced a solo debut prog concept album that tells a story, set in the future, of a man making his way from desert isolation back to the domed city from which he came. But as with all good progressive rock, the music stands on its own merit, regardless of whether the listener takes any notice of the overarching plotline.

The level of craftsmanship and the roster of top-notch collaborators brings to mind Brit Steve Thorne, whose excellent Into the Ether album is examined here.

Among the prog rock notables making appearances on New World are Steve Hackett (Genesis), Nick D’Virgilio (Spock’s Beard), Keith Emerson (ELP), Francis Dunnery (It Bites), David Longdon (Big Big Train), Billy Sherwood (Yes) and Heather Findlay (Mostly Autumn).

While Kerzner’s no household name, he’s worked with many who are: Madonna, Tom Waits, Smashing Pumpkins, Jon Anderson, Steven Wilson, Alan Parsons, and Neil Peart. And he’s created custom sound programming for Beyoncé and Rolling Stones tours.

kerzner 1

The excerpt from “Stranded” is an almost too-perfect reproduction of Dark Side-era Floyd. “Ocean of Stars” is reminiscent of Porcupine Tree. And “New World” with its smooth prog-lite arrangement and achingly melodic chorus harkens to the heyday of Alan Parsons Project. It’s okay to sound like someone else, as long as it’s the right someone else, and the music isn’t merely derivative, lacking the quality of the original.

Kerzner isn’t simply copying–each of these songs sounds like it could have been found in the tape vaults of one of these great bands of past years–that one track left off a multiplatinum-selling classic rock record.


New World is one more example of quality work largely missing its audience due to a combination of radio’s prevailing tastes and the taste-lock of fans of classic rock, who reason that since all the great rock music was created in decades past, there’s no point looking.

Bands and artists like Riverside, Steve Thorne, Blackfield and Dave Kerzner prove that if you never lost your taste for rock with a touch of class, complexity and integrity, it is worth looking.

Listen to: “Stranded Pt 1–Isolation”

Listen to: “The Lie”

Listen to: “Ocean of Stars”

Listen to: “Nothing”

Listen to: “New World”

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