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Zola Jesus Covers Rihanna’s ‘Diamonds’ [Listen]

Zola Jesus
Matthew Eisman, Getty Images

More than a year has passed since the last Zola Jesus album arrived, and the singer is helping fill the void until her next one with a cover of ‘Diamonds,’ the ubiquitous first single off pop superstar Rihanna‘s own new album, ‘Unapologetic,’ out Tuesday. (That’s almost exactly one year after Ri’s last record, ‘Talk That Talk,’ by the way.) Bat for Lashes took a stab at Rihanna’s ‘We Found Love’ live on BBC Radio 1 last month and killed it — can Zola Jesus pull it off, too?

The singer also known as Nika Roza Danilova turns in a version that’s surprisingly faithful to the original: same tempo, same key, same beats, same vocal cadence. Zola throws in some extra keyboard atmospherics and cuts out a few sections, but we like the streamlined form. She recorded it “as a small thank you to my fans and followers,” she wrote in a Twitter post. Thanks for the thank-you, Zola. Now, about that next record…

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