Sunday, December 16, 2012

Scott Walker's "Bish Bosch" on Vinyl




It has been a long time since i have heard an album that says '21st Century' to me.  Scott Walker is an artist that is very much part of the world.  Unlike my other favorite obsession, Sparks, who are contained in a very private world surrounded by their obsessions, Walker is very much in tuned with the environment that is out there.

Sitting down in front of a pair of speakers and having the vinyl on the turntable is very much of a beautiful series of moments.  The moment lasts over a hour and within that time-frame one goes into the world according to Scott Walker.  The complex sounds that comes out of the speaker is multi-textured to the extreme.  Off-hand it reminds me of Public Image Ltd's "Flowers of Romance,' which is a terrific album, but Walker takes it on another level that is more humorous but in a very sick way.  I think of Lenny Bruce as being the the head concept man for 'sick humor,' and I think Scott is taking it on a musical level.

The album is brutal, funny, and in your face.  But it also has incredible moments of absolute beauty, but its mixed in with the horror.  There is nothing surface about this record, its a blues album that tears into a culture that needs to bleed or to cry out its blues.  Without a doubt its a masterpiece, and its amazing how artists like Sparks as well as Scott Walker just seems to get better and better as they get older.

And like Sparks, its kind of important to acknowledge their entire career.  Because a lot of people go on about old Scott material vs. the new Scott - and basically its the same road or highway.  The early material of the Walker Brothers and the iconic Scott solo albums clearly leads to "Bish Bosch."  Listen to this album on vinyl or on a good set-up - computer speakers don't give this record the proper setting - it needs to be in front of you and it needs your full attention.  Incredible work!

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