Last month, Tegan & Sara released Con X: The Covers, a special tenth anniversary edition of their revered 2007 album The Con featuring reinterpretations of its tracks by the likes of Shura, Chvrches, Paramore’s Hayley Williams, and Trashique (a new project from Grimes and HANA). Despite this female focus, there are also covers by men, most notably a version of “Knife Going In” by Mykki Blanco.
While Mykki is best known as a rapper, last year’s stunning debut album Mykki saw him embrace his singing voice like never before. It’s something he uses to startling effect on his version of “Knife Going In”, which is a slow, gothic, and twisted take on the original. “I get scared when people ask me to sing,” says Mykki, “so I thought I could take the song in a more Depeche Mode, sludgy goth direction. My voice and Tegan & Sara's voices couldn’t be more different, and it was intimidating – but fun in the end!”
“Mykki Blanco's version of ‘Knife Going In’ tilts more deeply toward the haunted dream that inspired the original version of the song,” adds Sara. “There's no possible way to tilt the song toward a lighter place, so it thrilled me to hear Mykki take it to an even darker corner of his mind.”
A new video, directed by Kristine Thune, animates this bleakness, a fever dream on a psych ward. “Kristine Thune’s video accentuates the woozy arrangement, and when the song and video finish, you’re left with the sense of waking from a dream that’s impossible to shake,” Sara says.
Net proceeds from The Con X: Covers and its accompanying tour go to the Tegan & Sara Foundation, a charity for LGBTQ+ girls.