Kacper’s Fantastic Debuts: JEFF BUCKLEY – Grace (1994)

Review by: Kacper Kopacz

1. Mojo Pin 2. Grace 3. Last Goodbye 4. Lilac Wine 5. So Real 6. Hallelujah 7. Lover, You Should’ve Come Over 8. Corpus Christi Carol 9. Eternal Life 10. Dream Brother
Essential tracks: definietly Hallelujah, but the rest depends on what hits you hard

I don’t understand how this album has so few views in youtube!!! this generation fucking sucks in terms of music!!
Alexis Pizarro

These kinds of albums bring back faith in music. However, there is always the other side – somebody must get drowned to be appreciated. I will only add, that David Bowie called Grace his desert island album and this, I think, sums up this debut album well.

The main thing that should be remembered is that Jeff was only starting. This album sounds complete, but it’s because he was really talented. Listening to Grace is facing mature and well-produced songwriting, however it can be so, cause music circa 1994 was not at peak of it powers. There is nothing from that era worth to be compared to Grace; it’s even more obvious in context of debut albums.

I don’t mean this is the best album of 1994; there are few easy to find candidates for that spot – like Geek the Girl (possibly the best rock album by a woman). I think, that Grace is, simply put, the most impressive/best debut album of the year it was released. It’s unmatched by anyone who tried recording neoclassic-rock album, that year.

And all of this, speaking of music, works truly well – especially in historical context. I mean, starting album on such a high note as “Mojo Pin” and ending it with another highlight “Dream Brother”, must have been appreciated by critic. Jeff Buckley’s tragic death must have brought an attention of worldwide audience. This couldn’t have failed in becoming a commercial success.

There is also, on this album, the superb version of “Hallelujah”, but I will just say it’s one of very few recordings, that could be called the most resonant ever.

So, I wanted to skip comparison of Jeff with his father, Tim. But, I believe that it needs to be mentioned. On his debut album Jeff makes music in manner, similar to his father, although they were composing different kinds of music. Jeff’s music is more hard-rocking. Tim Buckley, who died long before Jeff started recording, was creator of very ambitious psychedelia. Jeff’s Grace is better than Tim’s first two albums, but with Happy Sad Tim reached more advanced level than Jeff at his beginnings. Anyway, both of these artists are recommendable, especially if you like one of them already.

This is it; Grace is one important debut album. Give it a try, because every true music lover should know it. It is quite a fun to also check comments on this album; I can call it a mind-opening experience.