Bon Iver, Bon Iver was a great album, nearly universally enjoyed apart from one song: controversial album closer “Beth / Rest.” Sonically, it was a drastic shift from the rest of the album, a sort of 80’s alt-rock track tacked onto the end of the atmospheric beauty of the rest of the record. I loved it, but it was no stretch of the imagination to see why people would hate it.
If you were one of the people that didn’t like the album version, this one is for you. Justin Vernon & Co. stripped down the song they just won’t give up on to just pianos and husky vocals for a recent NPR performance. It’s the same song, but without the frills that threw everyone off. It’s more straightforward, and a lot sadder in its own way, and definitely fits the Bon Iver aesthetic much better.