Live At L'Olympia review by Jeff Buckley

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Jul 3, 2001
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.5 (15 votes)
Jeff Buckley: Live At L'Olympia

Sound — 10
This album shows Buckley at his best, he himself believed this to the best example of his work. This album showcases Buckley's incredible emotional range, taking existing works of himself and others and stretching to the very limit, from the rage of Eternal Life, breaking down in the middle to scream at the audience, to the love of That's All I Ask. It's not all serious though, with Buckley taking the time to parody Led Zep's Kashmir, and stopping in the middle of songs to toy with his audience. Though not perfect, the actual sound quality is surprisingly good for a live recording, certainly good enough to sustain Buckley's incredible voice. It succeeds in holding up under his vocal onslaughts, "oh your just like him" (Dream Brother), the middle of Eternal Life, and the entire outro to Grace.

Lyrics — 10
Once again, Buckley has excelled himself. He proves yet again that he is a lyrical genius. There not being any previously unheard songs here there's not an awful lot to say here, suffice to say that you will be blown away. As mentioned earlier, Buckley's voice is on form, if at times overbearing. He shows that you don't need a deep voice to sing powerfully, and that you don't need to be 8 years old to sing beautifully.

Overall Impression — 10
If I had to place a low point of the album it would have to be Lilac Wine. Compared to the rest of the album it is dormant and empty and, dare I say it, a bit boriing. However, this is immediately made up for, as following it is possibly the most exciting thing I have ever heard: an incredible version of Grace. For me this album has three high points: Grace, the final verse and chorus of Hallelujah, it will blow you away and on Kashmir, when a man in the audience shouts "thank you for giving us so much". This in itself shows how affecting Buckley's performance was. It's moments like this in the album that you find yourself biting back tears. This album may not have the crispness of Grace, or the rawness of Sketches, but if passion is what you're looking for, this is the place to come. In summersion: buy this album. Or download it illegaly. Whatever you're into.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    He's great, but the singing is pretty uncontrolled at parts and just turns intro shrieking. And does anyone thing the live version of 'Eternal Life' or 'Kick out The James' is actually good? There's some great stuff on this disc for sure but it isn't perfect. What Will You Say is though.