The all-star roster of hardcore and metal elite pay tribute to Prince with a heavy rendition of one of his most beloved anthems in the name of charity.
Words by Jenna DePasquale
Lamb of God’s Randy Blythe, among other members of the punk and metal scenes, keep Prince’s legacy alive with a cover of “I Would Die 4 U.” The song was featured on Two Minutes To Late Night — a metal talkshow co-produced by Jordan “Gwarsenio Hall” Olds and Drew Kaufman. The rendition of the late singer’s 1984 hit is the latest installment in the show’s cover series, which regularly brings noteworthy rock artists together to create a track all their own.
As Blythe takes command of vocals, Walter Schreifels of the Gorilla Biscuits, Dwid Hellion of Integrity, and Bo Lueders of Harm’s Way provide a hardcore interpretation of the track’s funky instrumentals. An impressive collection of performers also appear in the video, including Djamila Azzouz of Ithaca, Dimitri Minakakis of The Dillinger Escape Plan, Shawna Potter of War on Women, and many more. The musicians who contributed to the track have donated their artist fees to Dallas Hope Charities, which aims to provide food and shelter for homeless LGBTQ+ youth in the greater Dallas area.
The collaborative video for the cover is an entertaining montage of stay-at-home home hijinks. Whether it be performing to a poolside pooch or dancing with hoodie-clad kitties, the collective provide a feel-good experience. The impact of Prince on the black community is also not lost. Schrefiels performs in front of a roof-top mural honoring Breonna Taylor, who was killed by Louisville police last year.
“I Would Die 4 U” is the fourth track on Prince’s musically ambitious album Purple Rain. The dance anthem, along with several other singles from the record, reached the top 10 on the Billboard Charts. “I Would Die 4 U” has inspired countless covers by modern pop artists like Chvrches and Lorde.
In 2016, the news that Prince had suddenly passed away shocked the music world. The singer was one of many artists who have met untimely deaths due to the opioid fentanyl in recent years. Nevertheless, Prince’s influence on musicians across all genres has ensured that his memory will not fade.