Here Woman / I Woke Up / Monterey / Moulin Rouge /
Song To The Siren /
Jungle Fire / Starsailor / The Healing Festival /
Down By The Borderline
8.5 of 10
'Starsailor' is a work of a man with a unique artistic vision.
else has ever sounded quite like this album, even bearing
in mind the other albums Tim Buckley himself released. 'Starsailor'
has jazz based backings and rhythms, but they are so very
loose. It's a good way to be, Tim floats over the top, often
with wordless vocal refrains and he certainly isn't sticking
to any kind of structure.
lyrics are mysterious, possibly without any meaning to anybody
except that they had meaning to Tim himself - but that's to
underestimate them. There aren't that many words here, by
the way - but the phrases come out at you. "You caught
me staring / so gently he teased me", for example - the
opening line of the startling 'Come Here Woman'. It's avant
garde jazz, then more purposeful, moving off into a real funky
riff repeated and repeated - then goes off into freeform jazz
Woke Up' is weary sounding, harrowing - like somebody presiding
over the death of somebody close to them, reflecting upon
it - or reflecting upon a huge wealth of sadness present in
this world. For contrast, 'Monterey' is fast and striking
and purposeful. Energy right next to beautiful contemplation,
or at least, ugly beautiful thoughts and reflection.
'Moulin Rouge' moves along with French words, and French words
sung by Tim Buckley sound impossibly beautiful. Especially
married to this happy, jaunty little melody. After the relative
starkness and/or darkness of the earlier songs on this album,
'Moulin Rouge' is perfectly placed to change your emotions,
to add to the overall emotion the album can provide a listener.
To The Siren', most famously, has been sung by Elizabeth Frazer
of The Cocteau Twins - she sang the song and did it justice
and it was a performance rightly remembered right to this
day. I'd never heard the original, this Tim Buckley version.
I can say is, it's so beautiful, the music so bare, a single
guitar playing about five notes every ten seconds, or so.
Female backing vocals are present in places, but in so few
places.... used just right.
To The Siren' is a vocal melody, an impossibly beautiful one,
wonderfully sang. Real emotion, "All my heart, all my
heart - shies from the sorrow" sings Tim, and I can associate
with that. "I'm as puzzled as a new born child"
- the world is confusing, and 'Song To The Siren' transcends
the ages, a song to live forever.
bass guitar is noticeable during 'Jungle Fire' but it has
a hard time following 'Song To The Siren'. Tim really does
wail and let himself free, vocally, all through the track.
This isn't singing, it's vocal expression, wordless vocal
expression at that. As the band begin to cook up a groove
behind him... the effect becomes excitingly striking.
the title song, voices appear layered over each other, ghostly
and disturbing. It sounds like insanity, a true journey into
somebodys soul without any words being expressed, although
the word 'fields' can be made out at a certain point. Such
a song was never likely to be played on the radio and it's
a difficult song to listen to. Extremely difficult. However,
'The Healing Game' is a glorious jazz/rock assault with Tim
weaving a magical spell over the top and the closing song
a funky jazz trumpet based number with Tim again, letting
himself go, flying free.