Buckethead
Shadows Between The Sky


4.5
superb

Review

by Mike C USER (16 Reviews)
June 11th, 2013 | 24 replies | 1,014 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Aural pleasure of the utmost degree.

6 of 6 thought this review was well written

Buckethead

Shadows Between The Sky

Throughout the last couple of decades you’d be hard pressed to find a more outwardly creative, unique and awe-inspiring individual than Buckethead. While many received a grand introduction to the man’s axe-slinging mastery through the video game medium, Guitar Hero, few actually know of his deep and outlandish discography, one which ranges from total fretboard worship to more sub-dued, quiet and transcendental soundscapes and everything in-between. And I mean EVERYTHING. The fact that the super-shredder behind the Jason Voorhees-esque mask has been able to retain total anonymity throughout the duration of his successful career (which ranges from performing as well as recording with Guns n Roses to side projects with Primus’s Les Claypool) is almost as impressive as his jaw dropping playing. While many may fail to look past initial impressions and pass him off as “just another guitar wanker,” those who dig deeper are sure to find what is a trove of recordings of the utmost quality with Shadows Between The Sky remaining at the forefront of a discography spanning upwards of seventy albums.

Released in 2010, Shadows Between The Sky features many aspects that his more crowned and revered albums such as Electric Tears and Colma executed so well. From the classically influenced acoustic finger-picking on “Greens Keeper” to the glassy, clean-toned arpeggios and enthralling chord progressions on “Sled Ride,” everything is executed with such focus and precision that makes one thing blatantly clear, Big B means business. While a slight majority of Buckethead’s albums rely on profound, intense and unsettling guitar virtuosity, Shadows Between The Sky favors a much more calmed and serene set of soundscapes which are more akin to laying in a lush garden opposed to head banging in a mosh pit. Beauty is a central theme here as each one of the album’s fifteen tracks venture through intense but comfortable apexes and satisfying resolutions with no distortion or fancy pedalboard-fused effects throughout. The production is spot on as well. Everything from the sparse laid-back drum rhythms and dreamy bass to the aforementioned guitars are layered and delivered with utmost precision. Indeed, Buckethead has arguably never sounded better.

While Shadows Between The Sky is best embraced as a congruent whole, there are moments that stand out upon individual listens. One of the more slow-paced tracks, “Sea Wall,” features decelerated clean picked arpeggiated chords only to leave the listener swept away in one of the records more memorable and ensnaring musical model progressions. The title track is also of deserving of accolade, especially for the agile, nylon tranced guitar solo that finishes the track and starts the album off on a rather unbelievably high-note. While a majority of Shadows Between The Sky’s track are devoid of percussion-based elements there are still moments where the grooves really shine. “Sled Ride” is one of the more up-tempo and technically captivating “wedges” throughout the man’s entire discography, displaying a crisp backing drum track and all the finger-licking licks any guitar enthusiasts could ask for.

Shadows Between The Sky is a work of majestic beauty, deserving of every piece of admiration and accolade it stumbles upon, a gem of a recording that is as fitting to snuggle up with a good book to as it is to fall asleep to. Those new to the man’s work need not be thrown off by his unorthodox approach to the electric guitar as Buckethead has so much more to offer than a simple Youtube search of his name might suggest. Shadows Between The Sky remains accessible while offering many underlying elements that retain intrigue and mystique upon repeated listens. There’s simply no sour track to be found amongst the bunch, a rarity in guitar-focused instrumental music made all the more impressive due to the fact that he released five albums in the same year. Music in general rarely reaches the level of diversity and tranquility that Buckethead has achieved with Shadows Between The Sky, an album that is as genuine as it enjoyable and by all means essential.

4.8/5



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Comments:Add a Comment 
MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Had to review this. Been jamming it the last couple years and it's enhanced the quality of my life greatly!

Originally posted at http://meltingalbumreviews.com/2013/06/12/buckethead-shadows-between-the-sky/

DinosaurJones
June 11th 2013



490 Comments


This is one of his best albums.

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

for sure

DinosaurJones
June 11th 2013



490 Comments


As much as I like his crazy shredding skills, I like the more emotional albums/songs like this one "Electric Tears," "Electric Sea," "Colma," or "Soothsayer," "Sail On, Soothsayer."

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

same. I'd say Sled Ride is one of his better songs as well. The dude also puts on one hell of a live show!

Pestiferous
June 11th 2013



1180 Comments


props

DinosaurJones
June 11th 2013



490 Comments


I was supposed to see him back in '08 with my gf and one of my bros, but we all got food poisoning and couldn't go.

Still pissed about it.

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

he does this thing in the middle of his set where he brings out a big bag of random toys and gives them to lucky members of the audience. i got this crazy robot action figure from him lol

Rastapunk
June 11th 2013



717 Comments


Review is really good. Pos'd

Pestiferous
June 11th 2013



1180 Comments


fuck i love this guy i have almost all of his albums

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this, elephant man and bansheebot are his best imo

DinosaurJones
June 11th 2013



490 Comments


I agree with this and Bansheebot, but I'd probably go with Population Override or Dragons of Eden over Elephant Man.

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

valient choice my friend

scissorlocked
June 11th 2013



3508 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this is an awesome album

Digging: John Roberts - Ausio

Sheaiskl
June 11th 2013



813 Comments


Is this guy an underrated genius who just does not get as much coverage as he should do due to the sheer magnitude of
works?

MikeC26
June 11th 2013



3146 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i think a lot of people just brush him off because of what they heard in his wank heavy guitar hero song. that and a lot of his youtube videos would suggest that he is somewhat a senseless shredder, which is far from the the truth.

Sheaiskl
June 11th 2013



813 Comments


Yeah man, animal behaviour (praxis) outro solo, never forget

tiesthatbind
June 11th 2013



7371 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Excellent review. This is my favorite Buckethead album, followed closely by Colma.

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

Sheaiskl
June 11th 2013



813 Comments


Population Override for days, gonna start listening to Buckethead again though, been far too long

DinosaurJones
June 11th 2013



490 Comments


Escape from Plastination Station (from Inbred Mountain) is probably my favorite Big B song.

he just has so much material that it is utterly ridiculous though.



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