With Since, California troubadour Richard Buckner has found a way to give his high-concentrate vocals and heavyhearted lyrical pensiveness a flattering dash of ebullience. But fear not, fans of such modern country-dread to... more »uchstones as Devotion + Doubt and Bloomed: this is still the man who can summon the essence of such disparate spirits as Nick Drake and the Louvin Brothers while remaining ever faithful to his own wounded soul. --Steven Stolder« less
With Since, California troubadour Richard Buckner has found a way to give his high-concentrate vocals and heavyhearted lyrical pensiveness a flattering dash of ebullience. But fear not, fans of such modern country-dread touchstones as Devotion + Doubt and Bloomed: this is still the man who can summon the essence of such disparate spirits as Nick Drake and the Louvin Brothers while remaining ever faithful to his own wounded soul. --Steven Stolder
"After living with Buckner's 2nd disc, Devotion + doubt for a few months, I realized I could never again live without it. Really. It was one of those discs that just never left the CD player. It shook up all of my mental "top 100 of all time lists" and really changed many of my ideas about popular music. It became my ultimate Desert Island Disc... the one record I would save if my house were burning... well, let's just say the choice got a lot tougher when I heard Since! I really don't know if I could choose one of the discs as my favorite. I see them more as a body of work (with Bloomed as a very strong apprentice piece).Since is darker (if that's possible) than D+D, only because it's more dreamy, elliptical and downright strange. Buckner is a totally original songwriter. No one writes like this. He uses words as much for the sound as the meaning, and the effect is spellbinding. Words actually take on new meanings. Yes, he's that good. The instrumentation is more varied as are the tempos and arrangements. The sonic are even better than D+D, featuring that deep, dark, tubey sound, but with more texture, better images and good dynamics.If you loved D+D, I'm sure you have this disc already and have practically worn it out. If you like bands like Giant Sand, Mekons, Whiskeytown, the Walkabouts, Nick Cave, and so forth stop reading right now and get this album. It is a true masterwork, form a true master that hopefully has many great records left in him."
Commercials aren't so bad...
Polly J. Blanchard | The Sticks, IN | 02/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm ashamed to admit it, but I was turned onto Buckner while staring mindlessly at my TV. A commercial came on peddling an SUV, which featured a snippet from Ariel Ramirez. I got on the internet, found Buckner in my search through the car maker's advertisement sites, and promptly ordered the CD.
It's hard to describe the music - it's simple and hauntingly beautiful, and it just gets better each and everytime I listen to it.
Thank you, Richard. What a wonderful gift you have. "
todd w shearer | 03/10/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For fans of ALL music, this is truly an amazing record. From start to finish Buckner mesmerizes with an eclectic assortment of help from members of Calexico, Tortoise, Friends of Dean Martinez, Gastr Del Sol to name a few. If you like Tupelo, Son Volt, Townes Van Zandt or any music with a lyrical flair, BUY THIS! You will not be disapointed...also he puts on one helluva live show."
At the first creak of Richard Buckner's voice
tomcheese | Sydney, Nova Scotia Canada | 02/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"At the first creak of Richard Buckner's voice you feel you're in for a slightly off-balanced ride; he sings as if the words are untrustworthy things he has to guide to where he is heading. Intriguing and story-telling words they are, framed lightly by a wayward acoustic guitar, percussion or steel guitar. His tones jump around on the opener Believer like he's singing it from a dizzying spot, Faithful Shooter is more grounded and pinched up by its percussion. Ariel Ramirez is bleak and haunting while Jewelbomb kicks up some dirt with
its spurring guitar and reflective vocal. The Ocean Cliff Clearing directs itself to more pleasant spots.
Goner w/ Souvenir is a standout, its strums and percussion clicking off Buckner's round-voiced enunciations. His impressive observations peak with the music here. Slept patters along deep plunks of the guitar; Pico gathers a pace, an instrumental. Coursed is on pleasant ground again, a vocal collected from a well of old heartbreak it seems; Lucky Buzz gets a good grip on the idea of vengeance and a tripping drum. 10-Day Room cuts quickly and beautifully; Brief & Boundless huddles around the word "raze" with its soft pluckings of guitar; Hand @ The Hem reveals the peculiar way Buckner has of communicating: a snatch of conversation, a compelling image, tied up to his restless vocal chords. Boys, The Night Will Bury You is sly and evocative, a top tune, and Once finishes this terrific album with just-cooling images and moods--"I lapped up to the bay bar & saw her bobbing like a wave & I slowed down" "I dreamed of a couple dancing close and drunk in the spray of lights they made."In the end, this is a powerful singer with a voice that carves out old misbegotten experience like rotten wood to good song."
Start to burn, oxygen aplenty
SEAN T ONEIL | Missoula, Montana United States | 10/03/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"WHOMP! ...is the sound of Buckner's songs delivering their soul-punch. Who can better move the soul, the heart, the spirit with lyrics and music? Nobody. mmm hmm. go ahead, nod knowingly. it's okay. it's even encouraged.At the time of the release of Since, I was in a relationship with the woman who seems -- at this point in my life -- to be destined to be the one I didn't want to lose. She and I listened often to my copy of Since, and I bought her a copy to play when she was at her home. She asked if any songs reminded me of our relationship -- "of course," I replied, and through choked back tears I said, "Souvenir." Buckner's songs have that immense power over me. The first time I heard "Mud" off the Bloomed album, I started crying at his line, "and Christ how this life, from mud to miracle, is just the prettiest little burden, isn't it, El?" What beautiful poignancy -- a melancholically clever sentiment shared with the woman whom he loved and who was herself clever enough to understand its depth and beauty. Such is the affection in the songs on Since.I won't waste your time, nor will I insult Buckner, by encapsulating each of the songs from Since. A reviewer's words cannot enliven his songs -- they must be heard, felt, nurtured and tended by one's mind, heart, soul. By all rights in a just world, Buckner would be the verdant envy of every lyricist/poet plying the trade today. 5 stars, surplus waiting."