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4.7 out of 5 stars
20
4.7 out of 5 stars
Happy Sad
Format: MP3 Download|Change
Price:£6.19


on 2 April 2003
It took me a while to get to grips with this, as it did for me to get to grips with Tim Buckley at all, and there are a whole host of reasons for this. Perhaps the fact that I was more aware of his son prior to being aware of him, perhaps it was too jazzy for my tastes at the first fence. The comparison has been made by other reviewers, maybe because it is an easy comparison to make, to Van Morrison's "Astral Weeks". Praise doesn't come much higher and in this instance it is truly deserved. It is not particularly similar in style, tempo or theme (though arguments can be made for all three) but in the sense that both are emotional travelogues, spiritual journeys that rise and lilt in equal measure.The jazz repetition of "Strange Feeling" is a perfect introduction to the album, superficially relaxed with undercurrents of tension. From there the journey really begins through the romantic and (relatively) simple "Buzzin' Fly" via the epic and meaningful "Love From Room 109 At The Islander", the intense jazz exploration of "Gypsy Woman" eventually to the sweet end of "Sing A Song For You".They don't make albums like this any more that's for certain - it is of its time yet it is absolutely timeless. Truly incredible, any collection is bereft without it.
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on 22 August 2016
Brilliant Album and the sound of the music itself is very good but the 4 men with beards pressing i bought has quite a few marks and even some sort of glue stuck to the vinyl? which mean the first side has a lot of loud pops and even skips at one point which is a shame- and given I paid over £20 for a record in a basic paper sleeve with no download i would expect a quality vinyl - so yes great music but would recommend people stick with the CD or seek out a different pressing
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on 25 July 2001
This is my first encounter with Tim Buckleys music. I had heard of him before, but was only vaguely aware of who he was and no idea what he sounded like. Id heard him mentioned in the same sentance as Nick Drake though, which was good enough for me! Well, I can tell you now that its not another Nick Drake, but I wasnt honestly expecting that. The album opens with the lyrics "Ive got a strange strange feeling", and I can tell you that the lyrics perfectly match the music in this instance. This music could be described as Jazz tinged acoustic guitar music, but its hard to define because Buckleys method of getting from A to B seems to be very different from your average songwriter, like hes approaching from different angles. He also has quite extraordinary voice with a great range. Of the songs, "Room 109" is gorgeous,with compelling lyrics, and at times sounds like a kind of "out there" Radiohead - more than 30 years earlier. "Gypsy Woman" takes its time getting going, but once it does you realise its something special. I have a feeling this CD will be a "grower".
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 28 September 2010
This is Tim`s transitional album, after the delicate, blue-eyed gaucheries of his bright debut, and the self-conscious angularities of most of its follow-up. Happy/Sad is a perfect six-song expression of one man`s artistic yearnings, presaging so much of what was to follow.
Strange Feelin` is famously based around a riff by Miles Davis (Tim always paid attention to jazz) and has a likeably rolling tempo, with a momentum all its own. A haunting, beautiful song.
Buzzin` Fly is as addictively catchy as its title might imply, with a descending three-chord guitar figure just before the chorus - "that`s how I know I`ve found a home" - that is one of Tim`s happiest creations.
Love From Room 109...the sleepiest, most languid song ever by anyone? Here, as on all the songs - indeed almost everything he recorded - the voice (or perhaps it should be The Voice!) is pitch-perfect, evocative, gorgeous.
All I can say is that `Side Two` is equally marvellous, with Tim making with the frenetics on Gypsy Woman, giving us a taste of things to come...
Although it`s not my absolute favourite of Tim`s albums (see all my reviews if you like to find out which one is) it is perhaps the most flawless, with no weaker track, no lapse of taste.
A word about Tim`s musicians. Lee Underwood is rarely mentioned these days, but his guitar work on several Buckley records is a model of tact, invention and always a complement to the songs. A great musician. Jazzman David Friedman`s vibes and marimba speckle Tim`s melodies with atmosphere, giving the songs a texture found in few other singers` work. It`s obvious Tim gave a lot of thought to texture and mood, while giving his lucky musicians songs of beauty and substance to get their chops around.
Sometimes Tim`s music sounds like heaven.
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on 28 December 2006
Herein lies the restless spirit of a young man searching ; chasen by loneliness and chasing love. The fey baroque chamber folk of his first two offerings are replaced on this, Tim Buckley's third album, by a sound more substantially soulful. Folkjazzrock, maybe, and out of the sixties, but this is a timeless and genreless classic collection. Tim's voice and 12-string acoustic guitar are joined by a small band of musicians (electric guitar, vibraphone, bass, and on one track, congas) who gell to make an exciting and original whole.

The first two songs are rhythmically skimming and skipping ; teasing us with joy. In the third there are darker concerns of loneliness and longing, while "Dream Letter" is an affecting missive from absent father to infant son.

The musical and vocal tour de force, "Gypsy Woman", follows. Urgency and depth are provided by the addition of Carter Collins' congas and by David Friedman switching to the more funky bass marimba. Lee Underwood's electric guitar is allowed to stretch out and there's even a quasi-Eastern episode with de-tuned acoustic. On this twelve minute work-out Buckley is dealing with erotic desires, his naughty boy voice whoops and hollers. The men don't know, but the little girls understand.

The final thump and chord of this dies and we are left with his sweetest tune here, "Sing A Song For You". More delicate, honest exposure and a fine end to this, perhaps Tim Buckley's best album.
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on 12 May 2003
This is the album Tim really made a giant artistic leap (not that his two previous efforts weren't sublime) forward. The Q review that amazon have posted is pretty bang on when it relates this album to Astral Weeks. Both are albums of exceptional poetic beauty and yet have a fluid, organic feel. Happy Sad is rhymically diverse incorporating different grooves and particularly jazzy in the way that Tim's vocals float around the meandering rhythms. Tim's voice is particularly stunning on Love From Room 109 and Sing A Song For You. What I like about Tim's vocals is that wonderful tone and vibrato, often sounding ecstatic and melancholy at the same time. Considering Tim wrote all the lyrics himself Happy Sad really does stand out as a work of art..which has a human vulnerability that i must admit is lacking from the odd moment on Starsailor (it is still a masterpiece and one of the bravest albums ever made.) The great aspect to Tim's music is that it still sounds fresh today. Every track is a triumph but it must be said that Love From Room 109 is my favourite. The melody is so aching and original, the lyrics simple but poignant (you can;t help feeling empathy), the sound of the waves an inspired touch, Tim's vocals are understated yet it remains one of his greatest moments...oh and the arrangements are as good as anything lennon and McCartney wrote, and that is NO exaggeration. For under £10 this will bring you a lot of pleasure in the summer evenings or indeed on a wet november morning!
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on 4 August 2008
Moving, elegaic music - this can soundtrack the right hour perfectly, but it is very much for the right mood. If you like him, check out Nick Drake and vice versa.
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on 2 April 2003
It took me a while to get to grips with this, as it did for me to get to grips with Tim Buckley at all, and there are a whole host of reasons for this. Perhaps the fact that I was more aware of his son prior to being aware of him, perhaps it was too jazzy for my tastes at the first fence.
In any case, after remembering just how stunning his voice was I decided to go back through my old collection and attempt once again to become endeared to something that was so widely recommended. And this time it was truly special. The comparison has been made by other reviewers, maybe because it is an easy comparison to make, to Van Morrison's "Astral Weeks". Praise doesn't come much higher and in this instance it is truly deserved. It is not particularly similar in style, tempo or theme (though arguments can be made for all three) but in the sense that both are emotional travelogues, spiritual journeys that rise and lilt in equal measure.
The jazz repetition of "Strange Feeling" is a perfect introduction to the album, superficially relaxed with undercurrents of tension. From there the journey really begins through the romantic and (relatively) simple "Buzzin' Fly" via the epic and meaningful "Love From Room 109 At The Islander", the intense jazz exploration of "Gypsy Woman" eventually to the sweet end of "Sing A Song For You".
They don't make albums like this any more that's for certain - it is of its time yet it is absolutely timeless. Truly incredible, any collection is bereft without it.
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on 10 July 2007
This album is incorrectly listed here. Amazon can you fix this error? Happy/Sad is a great album if you like melancholic, jazzy, improvisational singers, which I do. Tim is comparable to Astral Weeks and Common One type Van Morrison. Others (like my wife) find Tim a droning bore and that's ok too. It's not compulsory to like Tim, and it doesn't mean you have poor taste if you think Starsailor is unlistenable noise.
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on 7 August 2002
Happy Sad is one of those albums that makes your spine tingle. Every strum of the guitar, and every note of the xylophone is beautiful. Tim's voice on this album is also at its peak, he effortlessly conveys passion, dispair and empathy out of every word he sings.
So why only 4 stars? I'm afriad the track 'Gypsy Woman' lets the album down. Although an interesting track, I feel it kills the mood so beautifully created by previous tracks. However, this album still has some of Tim Buckleys finest works and is WELL worth purchasing.
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