Bill Nelson

Buddha Head

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One of many trawls through the Bill Nelson home studio vaults, this time focusing on the 1988-1992 period -- during which the artist was experiencing a series of traumas and transitions in his life (explaining the three different home studio names used here). It seems that trauma and stress have a tendency to drive words and music out of Nelson at a remarkable pace, resulting in the production of numerous songs and pieces of music in a brief period. Most of these are fully complete efforts, in need, really, of nothing more than a little studio tweaking -- much of that in the area of vocals, where Nelson is notoriously weak. Throughout the songs on Buddha Head, the vocals are both underpowered and undermixed, which requires the listener to work a lot harder than really needed. This is also a detriment to the songs themselves -- Nelson's lyrics are often fascinating little jewels with philosophical or mystical points when they aren't parables on the workings of the heart or the sense of wonder. These instant-song efforts of Nelson's can and should act as an inspiration to songwriters and home studio mavericks, especially in the post-millennial environment.

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