Unplugged • Bob Hate (2014)
Coming so closely on the heels of the surprising “Juvenilia,” this disc unfortunately gets a bit lost. Its 12 songs are all rendered achingly in a mostly un-plugged format. (If you consider synthesized conga samples unplugged, well then you’ll be just fine.) But the disc is a winner. It’s an especially idiosyncratic collection of tunes, but the earnest playing holds the disc together. Well known older tunes like “Map of the World” and “Bad in my Car” come off beautifully in stripped down – yet propulsive – arrangements. And the deep cuts like “Love Carlene” and “Marie” shine. The standout tracks are those that have received the biggest overhaul, like “Pontiac,” which was transformed from a comic car ride into a terrifying goodbye letter.