Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Tim Buckley - Happy Sad CD (album) cover


Tim Buckley


Prog Folk

3.88 | 62 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Reviewer
4 stars I found Tim Buckley's music in a very unusual and unexpected way, at the age of 22 years or so, when I had bought a used LP, The Doors' Soft Parade. When I played its first side, I wondered how different, so much softer (!), the band sounded this time. Soon I realized it was a faulty pressing, with some other artist's vinyl side instead of side 1 of Soft Parade (the second side was The Doors all right). Later I found out the first side was from Happy Sad by Tim Buckley. Today I know Buckley's discography pretty well, and Happy Sad is still my favourite, undoubtedly helped by that funny first acquaintance.

On this third album folk singer-songwriter Tim Buckley shifted towards looser, jazzier and more elegant kind of folk, with longer tracks, and introducing acoustic bass and vibes on the arrangement. The result is at best really mesmerizing. Buckley's soulful, beautiful vocals and the very mellow music reach almost a meditative level for the listener to float upon. The opener 'Strange Feelin'' has a lovely laid back atmosphere while the second track 'Buzzin' Fly' is a bit faster in tempo, both featuring vibes in a central role. Also the acoustic bass sounds great. The band sound is spacey and breathy in a very natural and organic way. The nearly 11-minute 'Love from Room 109 at the Islander (On Pacific Coast Highway)' has a slow and deeply meditative mid-section that I adore. Not just this track but the whole of side one gives me inner images of travelling along a summer-breezy pacific coast, free of all pressure, slighly melancholic perhaps, but mind wide open to the beauty of the world.

I have a thinner relationship to the second side and its three songs, but the slow and romantic 'Dream Letter' is a pleasant continuation for the excellence of the first side. The vibes-dominant arrangement is very sparse; sounds like there was a cello too. 12-minute 'Gypsy Woman' takes the free-form jam-based wandering perhaps a bit too far, and despite being more dynamic and psychedelic (there's a relatively intense, guitar-centred mid-section, and lots of percussion), I'm remaining rather intact to this overextended song. 'Sing a Song for You' is the shortest and the most convenient folk troubadour song here, and it could as well come from Buckley's earlier albums. If the whole album would be on the spellbinding level of the first side, my rating would definitely be five stars.

Matti | 4/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this TIM BUCKLEY review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.