Lie Down In The Light

Will Oldham gets back to the country

Yippee! It’s harvest time again on Bonnie Billy’s farm. Actually, the prevailing wind is closer to Comes A Time. Will’s doing downhome on this one, with sawing fiddles, jaunty guitar, subtle percussion and the occasional honky tonk guitar solo. The opening ‘Easy Does It’ is so upbeat it’s borderline disturbing; following fast on its heels is ‘You Remind Me Of Something’, an eerie little wifebeater vest of a song, garnished with words as odd as two left feet. Both tunes serve as an analogue for the album entire. What follows is a series of gnomic updates on early ‘70s Californian stoner-country-folk (‘So Everyone’, ‘Keep Eye On Other’s Gain’, ‘Where Is The Puzzle’) alternated with rustic log cabin homilies (‘For Every Field There’s Mole’, ‘What’s Missing Is’, ‘Willow Trees Bend’) pitched right at the point where woodsy psychosis is about to set in.

The overall effect is, as I say, somewhere between Nashville and Laurel Canyon Neiler, with a sizeable dollop of Crosby, Stills & Nash, Sweetheart-era Byrds and maybe just a hint of weird Northern English folk. If you’re looking for an alternate soundtrack to Deadwood’s glorious weave of bawdiness, mortality and dread, look no further.

Me, I’m holding out for a Poco revival.

Key Track: ‘Where Is The Puzzle’

 

Related Articles

Beware

Dark things stir beneath the surface as alt.country figurehead Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy releases umpteenth solo record

Read More

THE LETTING GO

Over the course of THE LETTING GO (recorded in Iceland last winter with Björk producer Valgeir Sigurdsson) one stumbles hither and thither on a characteristically savage poeticism.

Read More

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy confirms Whelan's date

Ireland’s alt. country brigade will be out in force on April 18 when Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, aka Will Oldham, plays Whelan’s.

Read More

Summer In The Southeast

The old actor in Mr Oldham has never forgotten the importance of making a strong visual impression – and with his mixture of Chaplin tramp, chimney corner minstrel and death row pen-pal, you’ll certainly never confuse him with anyone else.

Read More

Superwolf (Bonnie 'Prince' Billy & Matt Sweeney)

You could set your clock by him. Like some kind of agrarian song tiller, Will Oldham is a seasonal operator whose harvest falls every winter, January being market time. This year he’s gotten a little help on the farm from guitarist Matt Sweeney, and together they’ve come up with a batch of tunes that are by turns courtly, kinky and perverse.

Read More

Billy Sings Greatest Palace Music

Aongside gentlemen of similar vintage and taste such as Shane MacGowan and Nick Cave, Will Oldham (by Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Palace Brother, or any other name) is a master of adapting traditional musical and linguistic idioms to post-punk sense and sensibilities.

Read More

A short album about love

Watch a video interview with Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, aka Will Oldham - including a (truly lovely) exclusive acoustic performance - and enter to win copies of 'Master And Everyone'

Read More

Master & Everyone

His compositions have this remarkable unfinished air, as if he is in possession of painterly instincts telling him exactly when to stop, an interior alarm mechanism warning him that one more stroke might reduce a great piece of work to a failure

Read More

More Revery

More Revery finds Bonny Billy in uncharacteristically non-fucked-up form

Read More
 

Advertise With Us


For information including benefits, key facts, figures and rates for advertising with Hot Press, click below

Advertise

Find us elsewhere