There have been worse renditions of "The Star-Spangled Banner" than the one The Fray performed before Monday night's national championship but they usually involve bad singers and forgotten lyrics. By that measure, The Fray were acceptable prior to the Kansas-Kentucky title game. Lead singer Issac Slade has a fine voice and knew all the words to the song. That's where the praise ends.
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The Denver rock band tried to rework the 198-year-old song into a modern hipster version and failed in every respect. Finger-picking mood guitar, emo vocals and a guy doing his best impersonation of a Civil War drummer boy make not for a fine anthem. If you weren't listening to the lyrics, you'd have never known the band was singing our national anthem.
At least Carl Lewis won multiple gold medals before he butchered the anthem.
Reaction was almost universally negative on Twitter. Folks jokingly accused the band of ruining the reputation of the United States, retroactively losing us World War II and causing an awful national title game.
How bad was it? Even The Fray's guitarist seemed embarrassed.
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- The Fray