Unabashed Buckley fan here. Grace is among my favourite albums of all time, by anyone, and I count myself as being incredibly fortunate to have seen the man play live, back in ’96 about a year before he passed away.
So I jumped at the chance to review something new from this monumentally talented but ultimately tragic artist. You and I is a very early demo of Buckley playing covers, by such artists as Dylan, The Smiths and Zeppelin, and a couple of originals, a very early version of the monumental title track to the only full album released in his lifetime (the arrangement remained remarkably intact from this early version to what finished up on the album), and the previously unreleased ‘Dream of You and I’, which is sure to haunt the soul of the Buckley fan.
It’s basically just Buckley and his guitar, as raw and stripped back as can be imagined. So, taking into consideration the fact that he has one of the great voices of all time and was actually a superb but underrated guitar player, You and I is a massively enjoyable posthumous release.
It’s very much a ‘warts and all’ recording, with a few bung notes on guitar, and the great man even proving he was human by hitting the occasional flat vocal note. All of which have been left in, not deleted or doctored up in the studio. It even has him talking into the mic in the studio at times, which gives it a ‘voice from the grave’ feel.
The whole thing is hauntingly, achingly beautiful, which should simultaneously give great enjoyment to fans, and tug at the heartstrings of people for a massive talent lost to us.
Reviewer: Rod Whitfield