As far as acoustic live records go, Skin and Bones from the Foo Fighters sets the standard. Until now. Cage The Elephant’s career-spanning live/acoustic record Unpeeled features fan favorites and hits as well as a few covers. It’s a 22-track session of splendor for anyone who’s a fan of music.
The interesting thing with “Unpeeled” is how good these songs sound in the acoustic environment with the use of strings and other acoustic instruments. They don’t just sound great, they sound like they were always meant to be performed and heard this way. The performances across these tracks are all brilliant and there’s not a moment here that’s weaker than anything else. The vocal performance of Matt Schultz is also something to marvel at. He leads you through everything here in an almost perfect fashion. Whether that’s from one of Cage The Elephant’s hits like “Ain’t No rest for the Wicked” or “Aberdeen” or even a cover of Daft Punk’s “Instant Crush”… everything on here is amazing. That’s because of the job that Schultz does vocally and because of the instrumentation included.
Cage The Elephant’s Unpeeled is an instant classic for a band that’s had a decade-long, storied career. It seems like just yesterday that their debut album came out and their success was surprising everyone. That’s not the case anymore. If they’re not already an iconic band they should be, and this just continues to add to their legend.