The Silver Seas' Chateau Revenge! - Blue Edition is a re-recorded and instrumentally stripped down version of their original Chateau Revenge! album. What I really like about this alternative track-by-track rework of the original recording is that the majority of the songs take a refreshingly unique approach to the acoustic genre, with a fair few of the tracks sounding completely different to that of the original studio album. This is by no means a criticism of the original album which remains my favourite release of theirs, I just think this alternative version offers some very interesting arrangements of some already great songs. Perhaps the most obvious example of this is 'Candy'. With a slower tempo, softer instrumentation and vocals sung in a lower key, this version couldn't be in further contrast to what appears on the original album. Other noteworthy tracks include 'Home & Dry' and the hauntingly beautiful 'Kid'.
John Mayer's The Complete 2012 Performances Collection - EP is a good acoustic selection of four of the strongest tracks from Mayer's latest release, Born And Raised, as well as a previously unreleased song titled 'Go Easy On Me'. My favourite songs here are 'Something Like Olivia' and 'Queen Of California', the latter of which I like almost as much as the version which appears on Born And Raised.
Finally, I can't write an acoustic post without mentioning my favourite acoustic album of all time - Jason Mraz Live & Acoustic. Recorded in 2001 at coffee house Java Joe's, Mraz is joined by percussionist Toca Rivera and bassist Ian Sheridan to perform a selection of tracks, some of which would later appear on future releases. The album not only highlights how vocally gifted Mraz is, but his band perform a setlist which is tight in terms of both rhythm and vocal harmonies.
Mraz's charming and humorous banter makes the record even more likable.
Though the entire album is an enjoyable listen, 'Bright Eyes' is my personal favourite, closely followed by a fantastic cover of 'At Last' that effortlessly leads into 'Sleep All Day'. Other key tracks include 'Did I Fool Ya?' and 'Conversation With Myself'.