R.L. Burnside is notorious for his gritty, greasy Delta blues, as each of his records since his 1991 discovery have been blistering electric recordings. That's what makes Acoustic Stories so refreshing. Recorded at New York City in 1988 with harp player John Neremberg, the album balances originals with a handful of well-selected covers, including three John Lee Hooker tunes: "When My First Wife Left Me," "Hobo Blues" and "Meet Me in the Bottom." Burnside is more exciting when he's electric, but these are unexpectedly haunting recordings that prove he's not just about rocking the joint.