Against Me! - Antiquiet Session #19  (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Against Me!

Antiquiet Session #19 (2014)


Against Me!’s Laura Jane Grace and Atom Willard performed six live acoustic songs in a studio for Antiquiet Session #19 back in September and the audio and videos of the performances were finally released on October 30, 2014.

The pair start off the session with a cover of “Fisherman’s Blues” originally done by The Waterboys. Compared to the original, this is a mildly faster and very stripped down version. But even though there may not be violins in this version like in the original, Laura’s voice more than compensates and I would argue that this is one of those instances where the cover is better than the original because of its simplicity.

They then move on to perform Against Me!’s latest song “500 Years” and they perform just about a perfect copy of the EP version, but you can definitely tell that there is more emotion in Laura’s voice in this version.

After “500 Years” they decide to play an acoustic version of “Transgender Dysphoria Blues,” which at first seemed a bit odd because the original version is such a rockin’ tune that is so distorted and loud that as a fan who has listened to Transgender Dysphoria Blues a lot and seen the band perform it live several times this year, it at first seemed a bit conflicting, but I was wrong. Laura and Atom did a fantastic job doing an acoustic version of this song. It’s a bit softer and slower than the electric version and does indeed sound a bit more on the blues side, but that’s to be expected from an acoustic performance.

As if these first three songs weren’t great enough, Laura and Atom go back in the band’s discography and play the classic “How Low?” and then they finish up the session with acoustic renditions of “Black Me Out” and “True Trans Soul Rebel.” All three of which are masterfully performed as well.

What makes this release really great is that it in no way comes off as a formal performance. You can tell that they are having a great time because Laura and Atom fool around and crack jokes in between songs. It’s more of a jam session with two friends who love to play music. That’s what makes this a pretty special performance.