A few years ago, Richard Cheese, a singer based in Las Vegas, released an album full of rock and rap standards redone in a lounge jazz style. Songs by Guns N Roses, Radiohead and Limp Bizkit were all transformed into swinging classics - the result was entertaining, surprisingly listenable and hilariously funny.
Somebody's obviously told veteran crooner Paul Anka about Cheese as his forthcoming album Rock Swings is based on the same idea. Unlike Cheese though, Anka's done it completely straight, as this version of the Nirvana classic demonstrates. A full scale big band strikes up before Anka's strong, clear voice launches into "load up on guns, bring your friends...". The result is somewhat disorientating, as Anka's version sounds nothing like Nirvana's, but it's remarkably enjoyable. His exuberant, feel-good version of Van Halen's Jump is also here, sounding just as successful.
It has the potential to be excruciatingly embarrassing, but Anka pulls it off thanks to his obvious sincerity and belief in the song. Nirvana fans will hate it of course (although Dave Grohl's given it his stamp of approval), but this deserves to be a success if only for the surreal potential of the nation's grannies singing along to a Kurt Cobain song.