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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

I See A Darkness

Bonnie "Prince" Billy

1999

Buy At Rough Trade
I See A Darkness
Album Summary

I See a Darkness is the sixth album by American musician Will Oldham, released on Palace Records on January 19, 1999 as the first album under the name Bonnie "Prince" Billy. The album features appearances from Bob Arellano, Colin Gagon, Paul Oldham, David Pajo, and Peter Townsend.

Wikipedia

Rating

2.96

Votes

9779
Genres
Indie
Folk

Reviews

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Mon Sep 13 2021
1

“I See a Darkness” by Bonnie “Prince” Billy (1999) Sometimes, legitimate poetic expressions seem to sit high on a throne of non-referential, non-allusive obscurity, holding a scepter of grammar-be-damned nonsense and crowned with a greater than ordinary vocabulary. But that doesn’t make them good as lyrics. A lyricist has one shot at grabbing the listener by the passions, and on this album, Bonnie “Prince” Billy has missed wildly. He sings as though he would have preferred to not come into the studio that day. No he doesn’t. He doesn’t sing at all. He mumbles over some tonal doodles, undecided as to whether he’d prefer to vibrate or croak out the end of each phrase. To call the arrangements ‘spare’ would be overly generous. Off-pitch backing vocals are completely (and intentionally) out of sync with the lead, as if that’s some sort of stylish adornment. There’s way too much left-hand piano and electric bass pounding out a melancholy dirge. After listening to the album “I See a Darkness”, I don’t see a darkness. I hear a silence. Sorry to have wasted your time, dear reader. 1/5

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Wed Dec 21 2022
4

You have to be on a little bit of a sad streak for this album to hit right. Luckily for me, I picked this one up in the late afternoon on the second shortest day of the year, after my girlfriend had just left to go home. So, as the late afternoon crept into a very dark Vermont evening, I put this album on, and it was perfect. A world unto its own.

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Thu Sep 16 2021
5

Fantastic. Hauntingly beautiful from start to finish.

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Sun Nov 14 2021
5

I SEE A DARKNESS is the first album I've listened to from Bonnie 'Prince' Billy. It's a pretty downbeat affair, and when I first started listening I worried that it might become tedious. This album was anything but that... "A Minor Place" seemed like a pretty down song on the first listen. Then after hearing the album I realized it was one of the more upbeat tracks, relatively speaking. "Nomadic Revelry (All Around)" is basically a love song, albeit a rather somber one. It would seem death is never far regardless of the nature of the song. I absolutely loved "I See A Darkness". Lyrics about the existential struggle of living that runs as an undercurrent to our friendships - those friends that we seek as a refuge from the darkness. Really moving song that gave me chills. My favorite song on the album. Incredible. The introspection continues with "Another Day Full of Dread" that lives up to the title. It is followed by "Death To Everyone" that contrary to what one might assume is not an angry threat but another existential exploration of death. The fun of living is a real positive part of the lyrics. You'd never know it if you weren't listening carefully. The remainder of the album continues in this vein, with what might be a downbeat sea shanty ("Madeleine-Mary"?), a redemption song (or prayer? - "Today I Was An Evil One"), and more somber, existential explorations. The album closes with "Raining in Darling", a dirge-like - dare I say - love song? A really beautiful dirge of a love song. This is a really bleak album that I would not suggest as the soundtrack to your next party. Many of the songs do have climaxes where the energy increases, but not by doing much with the tempo - instead by the swelling arrangements. Still that shouldn't put anyone off - Bonnie 'Prince' Billy is a master of making somber songs about somber subjects very listenable and absolutely beautiful. This is a really impressive album that I will be listening to again.

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Wed Dec 29 2021
1

Oh man, where do I start. First, I thought the first track was ok and I might enjoy the album. But then the 2nd one...woof. it sounded like 2 people singing different songs at the same time. It sounded like an elementary school lunch room when the kids were getting too rowdy. I kept begging for that 1 teacher who could stick their fingers in their mouth and make that ear piercing whistle to create SILENCE! Then the rest of the album was just shit. If I wanted to hear a shitty story by a boring guy with his guitar I'd join a commune. Literally fuck this album.

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Fri Aug 27 2021
5

a depressing and optimistic ode to survival.

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Wed Jun 28 2023
5

I'd never heard of Bonnie Prince Billy, and based purely on the album artwork was not looking forward to this. But it just goes to show you should never judge a book (or album) by its cover. Dark and melancholic, this is really evocative stuff.

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Wed Sep 15 2021
4

The first time I listened to this I very much wasn't in the mood, so it fell flat. I gave it another chance the next day and appreciated it a lot more. You need to be in the right mindset to connect with morbid depressive off-kilter discordant folk, I guess. Also, I can't help thinking of Jeffrey Lewis' "Williamsburg Will Oldham Horror" 😂 Fave track - "Death to Everyone", or possibly "Madeleine-Mary"

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Wed Feb 16 2022
4

Dreadful and honest. There's an effect where instrumentals like the electric guitar solo in "Another Day Full of Dread" are dulled down, as if given the spotlight yet unable to express itself to the fullest. It knows when to be simple and when to be chaotic. Vocalist is soothing and dynamic, sometimes reminding me of Eddie Vedder but mostly John Darnielle. Favorites: I See a Darkness, Death to Everyone, Madeleine-Mary

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Fri Mar 15 2024
4

Bonnie “Prince” Billy’s I See a Darkness has that feeling to it. A late night, calm, introspective vibe. He captures that amazingly on the first half of the album, like insanely well. The production, the chords, all match so well with his matter-of-fact delivery and wack lyrics. However, te second half drops in quality a decent bit. Highlights include A Minor Piece, Another Day Full of Dread, and Death to Everyone. Speaking specifically about A Minor Place, the production is so mellow and solemn, but the vocals encapsulate the feeling and grab me out of my seat. It’s like im being held down and drowned in his music, and its awesome. All in all, I See a Darkness is a great album.

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Wed Oct 20 2021
3

If there's one thing you can say about Will, it's he looks like how his music sounds.

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Wed Jun 08 2022
1

This experience felt like going to a restaurant where you are given some bread and butter for a starter. It's a simple but calm starter that serves a nice warmup for the flavoursome entrees, main and dessert. What if I told you that after the starter you were only served more bread, but it was more stale and bland as the evening went on, making you hate having hope before this ordeal all started. That's how I felt listening to this album. Just glad this isn't on Spotify.

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Fri Jun 30 2023
4

8/10 really good! I should listen to this guy’s other stuff

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Sun Jul 16 2023
4

Really cool to hear the influence the album had

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Wed Oct 20 2021
3

I wonder how Bonny Prince Billy would feel about his album being played with interludes of adds from the likes of State Farm, Eggland’s Best and VRBO? Will Oldham has always seemed like the most pretentious dude in the world. He’s so precious about being “real” and having “integrity.” He seems like the type who would ignore you at a party and make sarcastic jokes at your expense. Bonny Prince Billy always reminds me of a train ride I took with Zoe where she had us both listen to the album in perfect unison and was weird about getting it exact, then having sex, it was a sexy idea, but her controlling exactitude, me not fucking in rhythm, the music getting off unison, the conductor knocking at the door, made what should’ve been amazing a hellish experience. I was really feeling the first half of album, raw, singer songwriter Appalachian rock. It’s fragile and wandering. Sounds like the songs of a tragic loner in the olden times. As the album went on it wasn’t as good, some bad forced rhyme and cadence, some sloppy instrumentation. I want yo love Nonmie Prince Billy and there are moments when I do, but for the most part his albums are just out of reach, I’m just not cool enough to really embrace it, kind of like when I was trying to listen to it and have sex on a train.

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Wed Oct 20 2021
3

Ooof. This one's a heavy load. Feels like it deserves another spin and a more dedicated listen to look beneath the hood. Just the voice and arrangements alone were affecting. I think I'm in. Hady had to put headphones on to block out Bonnie while cooking empanadas. It seemed like Elliot Smith with less catchy melodies and a more mature perspective. Bookmarking this to return to in deep dark December, then play NIN. For now a placeholder B+

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Wed Oct 20 2021
3

An intriguing whisp of an album - didn't cohere fully on first listen, but this may have been a function of the organic, ethereal feel each track has, as if they're arising out of nothingness

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Wed Jun 28 2023
3

Was hopeful after the first song this would be a treasure that I didn't expect, and while it is still a good album, there is a lot of similar sounding songs and the background vocals (especially on Track 2) can be a bit unnerving. Not a bad album by any stretch, but also not an album I would recommend on this list. Admittedly, I will probably explore more of his work even if I don't think this album should be on this list.

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Mon Mar 04 2024
3

Melancholy. Never heard of this one before. Definitely gotta be in the right mood for it, but much more enjoyable than some of the bland 60s rock on here. Cool voice.

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Tue Mar 05 2024
3

Nr. 146/1001 A Minor Place 4/5 Nomadic Revery 3/5 I See A Darkness 4/5 Another Day Full Of Dread 5/5 Death To Everyone 3/5 Knockturne 3/5 Madeleine-Mary 3/5 Song For The New Breed 3/5 Today I Was An Evil One 3/5 Black 4/5 Raining In Darling 3/5 Average: 3,45 Very melancholic songs. Liked this more than expected.

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Fri Mar 15 2024
3

Grayed out for listening at Spotify. I was able to listen to it at youtube. Interesting. I like it.

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Sat Mar 16 2024
3

Enjoyed this, to an extent. Title track was great, there were a few others that caught me, but not quite enough for it to get a really good rating. It's quite Radiohead-y, probably more similar to their later stuff I think. Would probably be something that I revisited every now and then if it was on Spotify, but it's not worth the journey to YouTube. 3/5.

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Sat Mar 16 2024
3

I See A Darkness is quite beautiful at times really, even if it's not something that really grabs me musically because of how stripped back and vulnerable it is. It's a delicate sound that contrasts with the themes of the songs being so full of sadness and solemn. It's also very well-balanced to deliver that experience, like the guitar work in Another Day Full Of Dread is restrained and pulled back to fully tie in with the themes on the record. I'm not gonna listen to it back any time soon but I definitely respect it and appreciate that there are times where this'll resonate more with some people than others and it's very much mood-based in its composition, delivery and listening. Gets a 3 from me.

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Sat Feb 24 2024
2

eh fine. not on spotify so youtube kept interrupting songs with ads

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Thu May 04 2023
1

Oh, boy, what a chore this was to get through. One depressing song after another. Off-key vocals don't help either. I was angry I had to endure this.

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Sun May 28 2023
1

Without being over-dramatic- I had a really hard time even wanting to pay attention to this. It was so slow and is not something that I personally enjoy or would ever suggest to others. I like slow music, but I like it to have something interesting in it. This is slow for the sake of being slow. Boring as hell. It has not ability for relisten and would not suggest.

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Sun Nov 14 2021
5

Whoa. This is dark. I am worried about Bonnie "Prince" Billy. His pain is palpable. I felt heart-sick the entire duration of my first listen. I think I'm on my fourth time through now. It is still dark but it gets prettier and prettier the more I listen. There's not a song I dislike on the album. I find the songs I See a Darkness and Today I Was an Evil One especially resonant, at least today. The record ends on a positive note (I think?) with Raining in Darling. "Oh, it don't rain anymore I go outdoors Where it's fun to be And I know you love me I know you do" love love love

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Sun Nov 14 2021
5

Oh, this one seized me. It didn't leave me when I was done listening. Yikes. I became a bit obsessed with it, which I didn't even see coming while I listened to it for the first and second time. The songs are beautiful, I think. I don't always understand the lyrics, but when I do, they stab. (And I HATE phony, whiny, "depressive" lyrics. These feel so real.) Someone needs to take "I See a Darkness" away from me, because I keep going back to it. And the Johnny Cash version with backing vocal by BPB. "Death to Everyone" is another one. There isn't a song on here that doesn't make me feel something. I need a Captain & Tennille intervention.

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Sun Nov 28 2021
5

Mooi ingetogen depri eerlijk donker simpel open , 1ste echte ontdekking

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

Had never heard of this guy before. It was a nice surprise… Very dark and depressing lyrics. Loved it. … However, I did not like having to listen to this via YouTube because it is not on Spotify. The random loud-ass insurance ads between each song really sucked.

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Fri Apr 01 2022
5

Thank you! One of my favorite albums of all time, five stars hands-down. This album has been there for me during every tough part of my life for the last 22 years.

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Mon Aug 08 2022
5

Classic album, absolutely love BPB. Great album to revisit this morning.

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Fri Sep 09 2022
5

Really dug it. Got wilco and shins vibes in parts. But loved the folk vibe

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Sun Oct 02 2022
5

Vraiment aimé mon écoute, je pense me le procurer. Émotion bien sentie, musique poignante, mais sans flafla

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Sun Nov 20 2022
5

This album is a compelling mixture of country, folk, and experimental. Bonnie Prince Billy’s warbly voice calls to mind the ‘high lonesome sound’ of Appalachian music within a indie framework. The compelling lyrics and minimalistic music draw the listener in to something that feels strikingly intimate.

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Mon Nov 21 2022
5

Only one listen, but one listen was plenty. I tried noting down highlights but gave up around 'Death To Everyone' - every single track on this magnificent record is an absolute highlight! The desperate, heartfelt, post-punk delivered by Oldham is simply amazing. The entire thing feels fragile but with a solid foundation in melodies, lyrics and perfect choices of the very sparse instrumentation.

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Fri Dec 02 2022
5

Un véritable chef-d'oeuvre qui m'a fait pleurer à la première écoute. Je n'en ai pas dormi de la nuit! De la sensibilité à l'état pur.

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Fri Jan 20 2023
5

I wish this was on spotify, because I want to listen to it on repeat. Guess I will settle for the artist's other stuff.

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Wed Jan 25 2023
5

91 / 1069 If you get it, you get it.

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Wed Mar 29 2023
5

I’ve never heard of this guy but I really liked this. It was a little sedate listening to it at 6am while driving, though. I really liked “Madeleine-Mary.” I ended up listening to this a second time and enjoyed it even more. It sounds a little ahead of its time; it has more of a mid- to late-2000s indie singer songwriter sound.

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Thu Mar 30 2023
5

Every so often this list throws up a gem. This is not even on Spotify but the cover interested me (thinking it was some Industrial Grunge band) so I went to Youtube. This is unique- sincere with integrity. The title track is very moving. It's obviously going to be jeered by the majority but I'm happy to say I love it.

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Sat Jul 22 2023
5

One of the most heartbreaking albums in my record collection. The first time I listened to a Will Oldham song, it was the version of this LP's title track he performed with Johnny Cash on the latter's swan album *American IV: The Man Comes Around*. I instantly fell in love with this very emotional tune about friends getting old and disillusioned, and yet being loyal to each other until the very end... The only (small) problem with this Bonnie "Prince" Billy record is that it doesn't include this version with Johnny Cash (his gravelly voice, coupled with Will's fragile harmonies, does wonders in this reenactment). But no worries, the original version is still a terrific tear-inducing gem, like many other songs in this record... 2.98 is a global score that's way too low for it by the way. What's wrong with people? Can't they handle sadness in music? Or do they have issues with grassroots aesthetics where the instrumentation and vocals are deliberately out of place--therefore adding a subsequent layer of fragility that makes the whole thing so poignant? This record is all about entropy and death, folks! Of course, it can't be "neat" and "clear-cut". Form and contents are artfully (and touchingly) echoing each other here, as they should be. I thought about this unfair global score, and rather than reviewing the songs of this album, I'm gonna 'review the reviews', so to speak--at least the ones currently topping this section. I want to make it clear that the people who take part in making this album so low in the global score have the right to express their subjective tastes, of course... And yet their reviews often prove that they are ill-equipped to do so in a convincing manner--at least for this sort of lo-fi, anti-folk record. Excerpt of review A (currently topping the section). Grade given to *I See A Darkness*: 1/5 "After listening to the album “I See a Darkness”, I don’t see a darkness. I hear a silence. Sorry to have wasted your time, dear reader." No you havent wasted my time at all. Because some of the ways you've described this album before that conclusion are actually the very reasons I love it. "Sometimes, legitimate poetic expressions seem to sit high on a throne of non-referential, non-allusive obscurity, holding a scepter of grammar-be-damned nonsense and crowned with a greater than ordinary vocabulary. But that doesn’t make them good as lyrics". Well, actually it does sometimes. As in here. Oldham's poetry is both oblique and direct and that's why it's so effective. "A lyricist has one shot at grabbing the listener by the passions, and on this album, Bonnie “Prince” Billy has missed wildly". A weird way to say that the passions in question were so overwhelming that this particular listener couldn't handle them. As for the rest of the review and the supposedly "poor" qualities of the instrumentation and vocal performances, see what I wrote up there about the "entropic" qualities of this record and how they match the theme of death... My grading for this review: 2.5/5. It's still a cohesive argumentation, even if reading between the lines of said argumentation reveals potential contradictions or self-blinding aesthetical prejudices... The worst is to come, though. Fortunately, review B (5/5 for the album) is simple, direct and extremely positive: "Fantastic. Hauntingly beautiful from start to finish." Well, here's a concise way to phrase your opinion. I should probably take a page out of this reviewer's book, lol. My grading for this review: 4.5/5. With another short sentence or a punchline at the end, this would be perfect. Next review, review C (4/5 for the album) is an absolute gem. I'm so jealous of the person who wrote it. Which is why its entire contents deserve to be copied here: "You have to be on a little bit of a sad streak for this album to hit right. Luckily for me, I picked this one up in the late afternoon on the second shortest day of the year, after my girlfriend had just left to go home. So, as the late afternoon crept into a very dark Vermont evening, I put this album on, and it was perfect. A world unto its own." My grading of this review: 5/5. Perfect, honest, personal, heartfelt, evocative. I would love to be in Vermont and listen to this record with this person right now. Review D (3/5 for the album): "Meh. Kinda boring" Just like what you've just written, pal. See how a positive review up there just added a simple adverb to actually describe the damn thing ("*hauntingly* beautiful). You can do that in a negative review, you know. 0.5/5. Review E (5/5 for the album): "a depressing and optimistic ode to survival". Change "and" with "yet", and you have a properly expressed take. But I fully concur with the sentiment expressed here. There's a beautiful duality to what Will Oldham crafts in *I See A Darkness*. 4/5 for this one. Review D is another very positive review (5/5 for the album) and it's a "classic" exploration of the LP track by track. Just read it. Love how its description of opener "A Minor Place" unwittingly points to the fact that the song is one of the few actually relying on *major* chords, ironically. That opener is surely a "soft" way to start this very dark journey. I do couldn't better in this "classic" mode, so 5/5 for this particular example... Now here comes the ridiculous stuff. Review G gave 1/5 to the album, and it's dumb takes after dumb takes. So dumb that it becomes hilarious: "It sounded like an elementary school lunch room when the kids were getting too rowdy. I kept begging for that 1 teacher who could stick their fingers in their mouth and make that ear piercing whistle to create SILENCE!" That person surely never had to handle or manage of group of kids. This is NOT how you create silence in a lunchroom filled with them, ha ha. At least in the long run. So much for your weird metaphor here. Learn that metaphor are as unpredictable as children: unproperly handled, they can escape your grasp and undermine your supposed "authority". And that's where you start to look foolish. Believe me, I've been there as well. But you can learn. You can always learn. "Then the rest of the album was just shit. If I wanted to hear a shitty story by a boring guy with his guitar I'd join a commune. Literally fuck this album." So graciously put. I'm glad no commune will have to bear with your bad manners, at least. As for the album being "shit", how am I supposed to trust the tastes of a person who rates The Stooges, Pixies, Television and Kendrick Lamar with 1/5 grades??? How? And by " I ", I mean 80-90% of the people in this group, most probably... 0/5 for this dumb assessment. Thanks for nothing. Going a little further to another 1/5 review (exhibit L). It starts with a restaurant metaphor that's not too bad to express your dissatisfaction with the album's "menu". Unfortunately, it ends with one of the most ridiculous things I have ever read on this app: "Just glad this isn't on Spotify." Oh, because being on Spotify is the 100% reliable sign that you're playing good music now??? Well, I have a lot of counterexamples to offer. And you probably have some too, no matter what your tastes are. A lot of music lovers (old AND young) are still buying physical copies of albums, by the way. You probably already know this, right? As you probably know that not being on a certain platform has nothing to do with the supposed quality of your music. I'm afraid you are confusing the message with the "pipes" and other broadcasting means that are bringing said message to you... Here's how algorithms are turning certain folks into sheep. Mark my words, I'm not against the technology itself. But I'm appalled by the way some folks are so under its sway that they become unable to reach critical thinking that would make a shred of sense. Which takes the cake when you're using this app. 1/5 for this reviewer's lack of articulate thought here. I'm gonna end this strange experiment, and I promise I won't attempt to do this again. I'm afraid some readers might take this the wrong way... The point is not to say who's *right* or who's *wrong*. The point is to state which reviews of this album are the most articulate and convincing. Under that light, let me conclude with a quote from another reviewer who was actually rather unconvinced by *I See A Darkness* (giving a 3/5 grading to it). What's great about this quote is that this particular reviewer found a beautiful way to express a detail that I absolute love in the album: "Oldham’s overlayed vocals don’t harmonize so much as skitter like moths bashing randomly into each other." Now that's a GREAT metaphor if I've never read one. And a 5/5 way to sum things up. I think that whenever I listen to *I See A Darkness*, I also see those moths flying around the feeble light of a forlorn bulb at night. That's the sort of "darkness" I can contemplate. And this other reviewer has seen it too, even if they didn't like that spectacle as much as I did. Their review is the sorts of sincere, sensitive, personal and aptly-phrased takes I'll always be drawn to. Just as I'm drawn to the similarly sincere, sensitive, personal and aptly-phrased offerings of Bonnie 'Prince' Billy. Like moths to a flame, I would even say... Number of albums left to review: 488 Number of albums from the list I find relevant enough to be mandatory listens: 242 (including this one) Albums from the list I *might* include in mine later on: 115 Albums from the list I will certainly *not* include in mine (many others are more essential to me): 152

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Thu Aug 17 2023
5

Contemporary folk and Americana owe a lot to Will Oldham. There’s a ton to like here. Stellar songwriting, beautiful composition and crushing and somewhat sexy lyrics juxtapose so well with Oldhams somber acoustic guitar driven style.

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Wed Aug 23 2023
5

Great album, I almost drove off a road in the snow while listening to this. The other four people in the car suggested maybe we should have no music on for a while. Why is it not on Spotify? Anyway, great stuff.

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Sat Sep 23 2023
5

Whoa this is not what I expected from that album cover. It reminds me of Johnny Cash's later work, but with vaguely Thom Yorke-ish vocals. I have a strange obsession with extremely gloomy and depressing music, so this is right up my alley. Okay yeah, this is incredible. Instantly fell in love with it after my first listen. Easy 5/5.

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Sat Sep 30 2023
5

This album is a vibe. That vibe is largely death based, and I like it. The sparse music, introspective lyrics, and slightly off-beat backing vocals make for a generally gloomy feeling, but somehow offer just enough hope of light, or love, at the end of the tunnel for the listener to empathise rather than to wish Prince Billy would just stop moaning. It also helps that the gloomy themes are largely universal human experiences (death, loss, heartbreak, broken friendship) rather than annoyance with a record company or a crappy upbringing, as has been is case on some other records. The first half of this album is perfect, a genuine masterpiece, with 'I Can See A Darkness' and 'A Minor Place' standing out in particular. The second half drops off a little, is a bit too gloomy, but still strong. I gather Johnny Cash and covered the title track. Unsurprisingly, that is also great. Rating: 4.5/5 Playlist track: I See A Darkness Date listened: 29/09/23

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Mon Oct 09 2023
5

This is brilliant. A true original sound. Or at least I can't detect influences.

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Sun Oct 15 2023
5

I love this. This album occupies a pretty unique space in modern folk with a distinct sound that’s neither old nor modern. I put Oldham up there with Tom Waits in his ability to write songs that sound like covers of traditional songs.

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Mon Oct 16 2023
5

If you don't like depressing af indie folk, this isn't for you. I'm in the latter camp.

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Sun Nov 26 2023
5

I knew Will Oldham from the movie "Old Joy" but honestly didn't know he was a singer/songwriter. I gave this one a listen and the title track just blew me away. Big thumbs up for this one!

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Wed Dec 13 2023
5

Me surpreendeu bem positivamente, pena que não tem no spotify

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Thu Jan 04 2024
5

Such delicate songs so tenderly performed: an absolute masterpiece.

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Thu Jan 04 2024
5

I guess the voice is not for everyone, but if you don't mind it too much, you'll find the songs on this album are just great.

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Fri Jan 12 2024
5

Goddamn, I did not expect this album. I thought I was going to be getting something between Iron & Wine and Bon Iver, but this shit makes Bauhaus look cheerful.

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Wed Feb 14 2024
5

I've heard of Mr. Billy before but I never listened to him. I was immediately drawn into this album and was along for the whole bleak ride. My instinct is to give this a 4, especially since it's a first time listening but since the community score is so low it gets a 5. It might "earn" that rating on future listens anyway.

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Wed Feb 21 2024
5

So great that I got to hear this album! The cover is deceiving as I wasn’t sure what to expect. The music and lyrics are very mellow and flow very easily.

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Wed Mar 06 2024
5

Absolute gem, really enjoyed listening to this album although it wasn't available on spotify I managed to listen to it using yt :)

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Fri Sep 17 2021
4

The tones of the opening track remind me of the indie folk movement that has really taken off in the past decade or so like Tom Petty's solo stuff, The Lumineers, Lord Huron, and Head and the Heart. The album hits a samey-samely level around track 8/9, but this is a nice mellow listen and a good background listen.

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Sun Nov 14 2021
4

I started the day with two listens and all that I took away from the experience was a feeling of dread. I was not overly fond. So, I decided to give it one more listen on my walk in the evening. Maybe it was the fresh air, the beautiful sunset, or the fact that it had grown on me, but I really started to appreciate the simple melodies and melancholy mood that the album elicited. I listened twice on my walk…and halfway through the second listen, I thought “maybe I love this album”. But no, I am not sure that I even like it…I am some what intrigued by it though and suspect that I will crave it again in the future.

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Thu Nov 18 2021
4

Sparse and raw, it is moody and contains both intense and quiet moments. Though it drifts a little more on the back half, the album is interesting and enjoyable.

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Mon Nov 29 2021
4

// Favs: Score: Decent to Strong 4

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Fri Dec 24 2021
4

Really good folk - gotta be if Johnny Cash will cover ya late career. Started very strong, finished less so. Squeaks into a 4.

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Thu Mar 03 2022
4

un des meilleurs albums de "country" du millénaire je pense

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Sun Apr 03 2022
4

Shows how enjoyable a folk album can be even if it's just simple instrumentation and one vocalist

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Sun May 01 2022
4

Альбом целостный, впечатление приятное оставил.

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Wed May 25 2022
4

I used to be way into anything Will Oldham/Palace/Bonnie Prince Billy put out after being completely floored one night by The Palace Brothers "Days In The Wake." Nothing else quite ever came close to that initial, nearly transcendent experience for me, but "I See A Darkness" is certainly a good representation of his general style, and undoubtedly considered among his best work. Will Oldham has this sort of laid back form of vulnerability that I can see could make some people uncomfortable. The kind of thing you either love or hate. And honestly, I can see how he can come across as boring too. But listen closely to those lyrics and you will come to know that he is a very unique songwriter who is able to capture these states of mind that are seldom put into words, let alone to music. His language can be incredibly poetic, even cryptic, but also, at times, disarmingly frank and direct. Both philosophical and mundane. I deeply appreciate that he tempers the one with the other. His voice seems to embody vulnerability to me. A brave and admirable vulnerability though. It has a sort of confidence in it somehow by paradoxically embracing its flaws and weaknesses. And I think that is underscored in the looseness of the playing. I could see how his songs could sort of collapse under their own weight if they were over produced. But the way they are recorded I get the sense he doesn't want to labor over things, to overthink it, or else he might stifle the spirit of what he's trying to do. It sounds as if he was simply recording things as they came to him. Like he was capturing a moment, or a mood, that was bigger than the songs themselves.

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Fri Jul 08 2022
4

Dug the vibe of this but it wasn't available on Spotify

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Fri Jul 22 2022
4

This was a really good album, definitely worthy of the praise it receives.

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Wed Aug 24 2022
4

Really enjoyed the mood of this one

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Wed Aug 24 2022
4

Wow this one really did it for me. Well done.

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Thu Aug 25 2022
4

Bonnie Prince is so weird and wonderful. Love this album

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Wed Sep 07 2022
4

Sometimes you need a nice emo boy singing you songs about your inevitable death. Not exactly Monday morning listening material but idk today it hit the spot.

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Sun Sep 18 2022
4

très bien, dark, dans la lignée spirituelle du post rock, proche de slint

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Thu Sep 29 2022
4

Actually quite pretty at times, just wasn't very exciting either. 7/10

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Thu Sep 29 2022
4

7/10. Really good, stay tuned for my Minecraft parody of the first song "A Miner Place"

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Thu Sep 29 2022
4

Good music. Good lyrics. Nice listen.

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Wed Oct 05 2022
4

Interesting album. I like it.

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Fri Oct 14 2022
4

Herkkä ja kaunis levy, iski kyllä. 4/5, voi tulevilla kuunteluilla nousta täyteen femmaan.

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Fri Oct 14 2022
4

Tähän sopi youtuben mainokset hyvin eiku. Voimakas ja kaunis levy. Tykkään laulutyylistä kovasti.

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Fri Oct 14 2022
4

Kaunista ja synkkää. Hyvää folkkia todentotta vaikken kyseisen genren suurkuluttaja olekaan! 4/5

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Mon Nov 21 2022
4

One of those albums that deserve to be heard in one sitting. Oldham’s songwriting is haunting and longing and I See A Darkness only makes use of sparse instrumentation. I feel moved with almost every word uttered by Oldham and while the first listen made me consider a 3 / 5, the second listen won me over.

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Wed Nov 23 2022
4

Amazing voice, perfectly accompanied

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Wed Nov 23 2022
4

No clue about this ahead of listening but it's beautiful.

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