Bonnie 'Prince' Billy | WIG140 | Released: 22/03/04
Will Oldham returns, and yes he's still Bonnie 'Prince' Billy. But this time he's singing from the greatest songbook of 'em all: the Palace songbook. Which he wrote.
Confused? You should and shouldn't be.
This is Bonnie 'Prince' Billy!
Will Oldham has made some of the world's greatest, most compelling, beautiful, rugged, raw, soulful, witty, and sorrowful records of all time, and, like R. Kelly, he just keeps 'em coming. If Ease Down The Road was Will's 'Chocolate Factory' (or was it the other way round?), then 'Greatest Palace Music' is his 'The R in R n B': an unstoppable hits package, full to the brim with lush luxuries for your aural pleasure. Recorded with a healthy mixture of old friends and new partners - Nashville session players, and familiar (and familial) faces Ned and Paul Oldham, amongst others.
Bonnie 'Prince' Billy re-recording his fans favourite Palace Songs is a natural extension of the smoother goings on of "After I Made Love To You" (Ease Down the Road), and the countrified duets of last year's dark masterpiece, 'Master and Everyone'. Fans may be aghast when they first hear these re-renderings, but give this record room to breathe, and you'll discover the sheer majesty of Will Oldham in glorious Technicolor. This is not Will Oldham improved; this is Will Oldham anew. We expect our expectations to be confounded when we're in the presence of the greats, and so here we are not disappointed by the Prince, even if we are somewhat thrown.
LP version features lovely etching on Side 4.