Bright with guitars and harmonies, Lie Down in the Light is a fresh new album from Bonnie 'Prince' Billy. His vocals are at their most expressive, a judiciously dynamic and tuneful performance. Behind and all around is a subtle backdrop of percussive slaps and shakes, touches of keys and steel, loving harmony-vocal arrangements and other sweet surprises that will send fans back to their auto-erotic dungeons, fresh toys in hand. Lie Down in the Light is the ever-searching soul of Bonnie 'Prince' Billy.
Will Oldham has built a reputation as a singer-songwriter who taps into a bleak folk tradition as old as America, so the sound of Lie Down In The Light
, his sixth studio album under the still confusing pseudonym Bonnie 'Prince' Billy comes as something of a surprise. Whichever way you look at it, this is an upbeat, uplifting record, almost sunny in outlook. Dedicated fans might not prefer him this way (many consider his first record under the name Palace Brothers, the timeless, stricken There Is No One What Will Take Care Of You
to be definitive), Lie Down In The Light
is undeniably charming and rather witty with it. Take the unexpected clarinet that turns the conclusion of the already rather daft "For Every Field Theres A Mole" into something as light as a silent movie soundtrack, or the way that the otherwise saturnine "Where Is The Puzzle?" remains unresolved. Ashley Webber, once of Canadian new wavers The Organ, duets but even her mournful contributions cant deflect from Mark Nevers skillful production. Only the title track, following an often used Oldham chord change, really sounds generic. Oldham obviously remains set on creating a determinedly solid body of work, but the odd soufflé, such as Lie Down In The Light
, doesnt come amiss.-- Steve Jelbert