Written by Rebecka McAleer
Welcome back to Additive Noise. You know, the truly amazing thing about music is its flexibility. A song is a song, but it can be played or sung many different ways.
One of my personal favorite ways is acoustic. Acoustic music means music that comes from a musical instrument whose sound is not electrically enhanced or modified, no amplifiers, no electric guitars, nothing that plugs in.
Many bands, when playing live, will take a moment to perform some of their greatest hits in an acoustic style. Sometimes they even perform whole “unplugged” concerts, where everything is acoustic.
Today, I’m going to share with you some of my favorite acoustic selections. First we’re going to travel back in time to the early 2000s and break out our Fall Out Boy. I know what you’re thinking: “You mean that junk I listened to in middle school?” Yes, but it’s not all junk.
The band performed and released one of their first singles “Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy,” in an acoustic format that really makes a difference. While the original song is high-powered and upbeat, the acoustic version is quieter, a tiny bit slower and is really useful when trying to calm down. The original makes your heart race; the acoustic could put you to sleep. It’s one of those songs that you love having in multiple versions because it means you can listen to it no matter what mood you’re in.
Speaking of moods, here’s a doozy for you. Breaking Benjamin is known for being a very emotional band. They use their hard rock style to invoke primarily brooding agony in the listener (a completely valid approach as a band).
However, with music, sometimes less is more. While the original rock version of their song “Without You” is certainly gripping, it’s the acoustic counterpart that I’ll admit has brought me to tears before. Co-written by Jasen Rauch, guitarist for fellow rock band Red, “Without You” is a song portraying feelings of hopelessness, fear and above all sadness. It’s not really much of a pick-me-up, but it’s perfect for a night when you need a good cry. The acoustic version takes away the rough edges and softens the song, making it a bit easier to swallow.
Enough calm. Time to pick things up a bit! Did you know that Def Leppard has acoustic versions too? Their acoustic copy of their most famous song “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” is just as much fun as the original. It has the same gripping rhythm that keeps the audience entertained without some of the splashy electric guitar moves that make it an explosive hit. The acoustic is equally exciting to sing along with and if the live videos are to be believed, the band has just as much fun playing it.
That’s all for Additive Noise this week. To hear the selections mentioned here, go to http://vsuadditivenoise.blogspot.com. Do some looking around this week and see if you can find acoustic versions or covers of your favorite songs!