The Tim Buckley Archives

Album Reviews

Happy Sad : Tim Buckley

By Unknown

This third album takes on a different direction from the folk rock of the previous two. Medieval poetics give way to a more even keeled jazz vibe and musically the arrangements are far simpler.

Tim is the sole songwriter on this album and as a result the songs have none of the rigid structure of the first two. With the exception of Gypsy Woman the songs are less elaborate and daring vocally, but have much more soul.

Some newcomers arrive on this album, John Miller on acoustic bass and David Miller on the vibraphone, which features heavily throughout.

I can't single out stand out tracks from this album, as to be honest, each one is as blinding as the last. There is not one weak track on the album, which despite being on the melancholy side at points, has a chilled summery feel throughout.

Happy Sad along with Blue Afternoon is, in my opinion, Tim Buckley at his best, it was also the closest he ever got to large scale commercial success. These albums act as a bridge between the folk/rock of the earlier albums and the duo of more experimental jazz/avant-garde albums, which were to follow.

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