12 Songs, 40 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

 It can get quite confusing. Louisville, Kentucky’s Will Oldham has performed as Palace, Palace Songs, Palace Brothers, Palace Music, Bonnie “Prince” Billy and as himself, Will Oldham. The differences have been minimal. No matter the name, Oldham writes and records folk and country based tunes that blur the line between sincere homage and ironic detachment. He seems to take a page from the Bob Dylan playbook of preferring his band to be recorded live, fresh and unrehearsed in order to capture the ‘happy accident.’ However, his players are usually less confident and often stumble in spots making for some odd, jarring recordings that are either transcendent in their energy or a bit like the sound of a wagon falling off a cliff. 1997’s Joya, Oldham’s first official solo album, is typically loose and sprawling. “O Let It Be” begins things promisingly and Oldham uncovers a few genuinely sublime melodies throughout. “Antagonism” and “I Am Still What I Meant to Be” are strong representatives of his style. But he can get quite coy and obscure as “The Gator” and “Be Still and Know God (Don’t Be Shy)” take a little getting used to. But once acclimated, it’s quite an experience.

EDITORS’ NOTES

 It can get quite confusing. Louisville, Kentucky’s Will Oldham has performed as Palace, Palace Songs, Palace Brothers, Palace Music, Bonnie “Prince” Billy and as himself, Will Oldham. The differences have been minimal. No matter the name, Oldham writes and records folk and country based tunes that blur the line between sincere homage and ironic detachment. He seems to take a page from the Bob Dylan playbook of preferring his band to be recorded live, fresh and unrehearsed in order to capture the ‘happy accident.’ However, his players are usually less confident and often stumble in spots making for some odd, jarring recordings that are either transcendent in their energy or a bit like the sound of a wagon falling off a cliff. 1997’s Joya, Oldham’s first official solo album, is typically loose and sprawling. “O Let It Be” begins things promisingly and Oldham uncovers a few genuinely sublime melodies throughout. “Antagonism” and “I Am Still What I Meant to Be” are strong representatives of his style. But he can get quite coy and obscure as “The Gator” and “Be Still and Know God (Don’t Be Shy)” take a little getting used to. But once acclimated, it’s quite an experience.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.9 out of 5
12 Ratings
12 Ratings
PalaceMan#1 ,

A soulful sound that touches deep

Trends come and go. Seasons change. You meet new people. Lose touch with others. The one thing that never changes though, is Will Oldham/Bonnie Prince Billy/Palace's soulful confidence. This album is among his best.

moneyfolder ,

Not A new One, But Genius None the Less...

Don't Let the release date fool you. This is actually his sophmore release under the name Bonnie Billy. It was actually released in 1997. Aftrer "Arise, Therefore". Best song writer of our generation. Look up Will Oldham for more beautiful music....

Emmett B. ,

Excellent

1st time through it you might find it all "samey", as in all the songs sound the same. Next few times through it, you'll find every other song is a little gem. Your 20th time through it, you'll find every song has an incredibly subtle hook that you'll just have to listen to over, and over, and over and over and over and over and o...

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