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

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the ago of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Various Artists - Seven Days of a Life – This compilation has obviously been real late in the making, as all of the tracks were recorded between 1989 and 1991. While the concept of this album is explained in greater detail in the CD booklet,...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues