The Tim Buckley Archives

Concert Reviews

March, 1969

Philharmonic (Avery Fisher) Hall, New York

by Pine

Contemporary singer composerTim Buckley played to near-capacity at last week's concert at the 2,700-seat Philharmonhic Hall N.Y.. He grossed $9,600 with tickets scaled to $4.50.

Buckley developed his style and merged his outside influences about two years ago; since then he has been working on his individual direction. Performance was an interesting indication of the moment's culmination point.

A hyper-emotional performer, Buckley becomes totally involved in all aspects of expression, with moans, grunts and shrill screams common in his delivery. He has chosen to sacrifice theatrical polish for pure emotion at times, a commodity that will alienate him from the audience at large while endearing him to his hardcore fans.

Buckley played acoustic twelve-string guitar and was backed by longtime guitarist Lee Underwood, who set jazz riffs into a modern electric style. Stand-up bass and vibes rounded the sound, with the vibist switching from metal to wooden vibes for different effects.

Buckley's voice demonstrated amazing range and quality, especially in "Wings", "Pleasant Street" and "Love From Room 109". He starts a cadence with a low grumble and raises it to a high-pitched whine within a few bars. His phrasing is unique, but not well thought out as on disks; at times he seemed to consciously make cliches of his stock riffs.

The top-drawer event received loyal response fron the audience. Buckley provided good informal banter and made certain to vary the show, as by his rendition of rock oldie "I Wanna Testify" in driving folk-pop fashion.

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