Exposé Online banner

Buck Curran — Immortal Light
(ESP Disk 5014CD, 2016, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2016-10-03

Immortal Light Cover art

With the cover art hinting at an occluded blue star deep in space, I was expecting cosmic or space rock music. Instead guitarist-singer-songwriter Buck Curran presents eight moody and introspective acoustic songs and instrumentals. Curran along with his wife Shanti Deschaine have been recording and performing as the alternative folk duo Arborea for the past 10 years. Immortal Light is Buck’s first solo release and features him on vocals, guitars, harmonium, flute, and banjo, along with Shanti’s breathy vocals on “New Moontide,” “Black Moon Rising,” and the title track. The album opens with “Wayfaring Summer (Reprise),” an instrumental that ties back to Arborea’s debut album of the same name released in 2005. The second track is “New Moontide,” a gothic themed song with bloody visions. The “Sea of Polaris” is floating electric and acoustic guitar instrumental, followed by the moody “Seven Gardens to Your Shore,” that sounds like a lethargic sea chanty. Continuing the water theme is “River unto Sea,” another meditative floating instrumental. Then something completely unexpected is a cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s 1969 smash hit “Bad Moon Rising.” Buck and Shanti overdose John Fogerty’s upbeat song with soporifics, conjuring up images of vampires. Then Buck pretty much abandons his guitars for the last two tracks, instead exploring the harmonic interactions of the harmonium. “Andromeda” is a sustained drone chord with interweaving notes. And the album closes with the 13 minute “Immortal Light” that features Shanti on lead vocals. This trance-inducing piece is a meditative mantra that hints at a ritualistic healing ceremony. Even though Buck cites Peter Green, Sandy Denny, The Pentangle, and Led Zeppelin as influences, which may be true for his earlier work, but Immortal Light is definitely original and worth investigating if you enjoy relaxing acoustic music.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Buck Curran

Latest news

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Enya - Amarantine – In reality the name Enya is almost a group moniker encompassing the Irish singer/musician as well as her collaborators, producer Nicky Ryan and his wife lyricist Roma Ryan. This collection echoes...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues