Classic Album Review :: Buck 65 — Secret House Against the World

The early 2000’s were a formative time in my music learning. I got a job in a music store in 2007, so a large portion of “new” releases I got were from that time. I did spend the first year or two going back into the annals of history finding everything I missed. Buck 65 was one of those things that I missed.

Strange, yet perfect: Buck 65 combines country music with Hip-Hop. When I say that, there is a good chance that your mind jumped to Old Town Road. That is a fair jump, but far from what I was trying to say.

Buck 65 takes the framework of country, then masks his inability to sing (?) by speaking the lines over the instrumentation. It makes everything incredibly unique and, on this album, is beautiful.

The wording in the last paragraph was intentional. I love this album, but I find that Buck 65 can be grating. Therefore, too much can exist in this instance. Not with this album.

It opens with the closest to Johnny Cash you can get with the song Rough House Blues. Then, like a light switch, genre change in the song Devil’s Eyes. It’s an almost Flamenco style, with it’s sharp staccato hits to create the music. Track three, Le 65isme, is almost my favourite all around. Probably the closest this album get’s to being traditional Hip-Hop, but hinges it’s entire premiss on broken sounds a drum beat that doesn’t make any sense.

The rest of the album continues that trend expressed in the paragraph prior: country guitar lines, minimalist drums, lazy vocals and Hip-Hop feel. The track where everything changes is The Floor. This song hinges on a very simple piano line and a horrific poem expressing a broken childhood. This song, more than any song I have ever found, sounds as sad as the words express. I love it.

This song does not reflect the rest of the album.

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