Caffeinated. Boppy. Groovy. Uplifting. All words to describe what has to be the best song ever to feature an 11-year old lead singer (no offense to Willow Smith), "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5. Tom Moon saw fit to include this gem on his 1000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die as a standalone song, praising the pop genius of it.
Then along comes LA-based a capella sextet Sonos. Gone is the caffeine, bop, uplift, and all that's left is the groove. Chris Harrison's booming bass (electrically produced via an effects pedal) holds down the wicked bassline, and Ben McLain's beatboxing keeps the whole thing moving. I heard this back in '09 because my brother was a childhood friend of Paul Peglar's (who has since left the band to pursue his acting career) Due to the appearance of this song on NPR back in the winter of '09 the group's debut album ended up on iTunes top album sales for a while. The band also appeared on NBC's "The Sing Off" (where they performed this song and actually got some flak from judges Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men and Ben Folds for changing the original too much).
While I think it rocks, check out their version below and decide for yourself. Refresh yourself on the sound of the original here, and then go buy Sonos' album (featuring covers of 1000 Recordings entries by Bjork ("Joga") and Rufus Wainwright ("Oh What a World")). They are working on a new one featuring their original material.