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Buckethead - Spinal Clock CD (album) cover




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2.04 | 5 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
2 stars For his second release of 2010, BH went a totally new direction with his 28th album SPINAL CLOCK which has been purported to refer to the chicken lover's back injury that occurred earlier in the same year of release. This album is unlike anything else in BH's vast canon and is the beginning of BH becoming a one-man show. All nine tracks are basically avant-garde banjo tracks although BH also includes guitar, bass and percussion and handles all musical duties solo. This was also the beginning of his artist direct to fan phase where he only issued 300 personally signed copies and then by popular demand extended that to 500 however, the album has never been released and is another case of U-toob being your best friend.

"Lafayette's Landing" begins with a droning buzz that sounds like a progressive electronic album is in the works. It slowly ratchets up the brooding atmosphere when finally a banjo emerges after an established bass line leads the way. This is some seriously slow moving activity here as the bass line gently thumps away and the banjo intermittently plucks out a lick or two and then vanishes into the darkness. Likewise "Whale On This" follows suit with a heady strange minimalism and extends on for almost 10 minutes by basically just shifting from weird to classical tune riffs to even Americana folk but it all seems rather pointless as if this were nothing more than trying out an instrument in the music store to test its playing ability. In between these snippets is often just noisy percussive nothingness that ruins any sort of flow.

This one is fairly disappointing because i would've hoped that some banjo music could be taken to unthinkable arenas in the chicken lover's hands but this one is basically alternates between droning pulses of repetitive bass lines and random parades of sounds that include periods of percussion, bouts of silence and other non-linear types of sound delivery. I'm pretty opened minded and crave BUCKETHEAD's experimental albums more than anyone but this one is not executed very well at all. Yeah, it sounds like one of those pointillistic type albums that reminds me of Karlheinz Stockhausen in many ways but this one is so minimalistic as to be rendered fairly pointless and devoid of any listening pleasure. Nice try, BH but this one will surely go down as one of your most bungled efforts. Even the the spastic banjo licks and nice melodic meandering at the end of "Spinal Cracker" are too little too late. Recommended only if you want weird for weird's sake with nothing tangible to grasp.

siLLy puPPy | 2/5 |


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