Sublime

Sublime Acoustic: Bradley Nowell & Friends

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Between November 1997 and November 1998, the Bradley Nowell estate, MCA, and the surviving members of Sublime released no less than three albums of outtakes, rarities, and live tracks, culminating with Acoustic: Bradley Nowell & Friends. At first glance, this appears to be the least interesting of the three albums, since it doesn't have outtakes like Second Hand Smoke or document the band in its live prime, like Stand by Your Van. Strangely enough, that's the reason why it's the most engaging of any of the posthumous Sublime releases. Throughout all these recordings, many of which are decidedly lo-fi, Nowell and a variety of supporting musicians run through Sublime favorites, toss-offs, and covers. It's relaxed, funny, and, funnily enough, quite moving, because it captures a human, touching side of Nowell that only surfaced in glimpses on Sublime's official albums. Of course, this is something that will be of interest primarily to hardcore fans, not fellow travelers who only owned Sublime, but that's the reason why Acoustic is the best of all the Sublime records released after Nowell's death.

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