Reissue of Tilt, the critically acclaimed 1995 release by Scott Walker. The album combines elements of industrial music with European avant-garde and experimental influences. The overall feeling of the album is bleakness with minimalistic compositions.
In addition to a lineup of rock musicians, there are featured contributions by the Strings of Sinfonia of London and the Methodist Central Hall Pipe Organ arranged and conducted by Brian Gascoigne.
...a dense and operatic work of geopolitical and psychosexual pop music....
Yes, Tilt is good. Scarily, maddeningly good. It is like an old mansion full of haunted arcana: revolving bookcases, secret rooms, a golden pouf to perch on sipping ancient eau de vie. Even the easiest pleasures, like the stained-glass daybreak in 'Bouncer See Bouncer,' arise from such obscure surroundings their beauty is always sudden, a second too quick for your defenses.
Then again, Tilt is not so good that you should lock it away in a trophy cabinet. It is an album you can listen to. A gravitational weight, yes, and bad company in crowds, but not all that inhospitable. He welcomes you to go in easy, trusting your imagination. You can internalize the sound cues, the rattling chains, the freighted blackouts and flickers. Or you can hunt for his passionate emotion, hidden but desperate to be found within the lyric sheet. Rummage for psychic flotsam, cross-examine the non sequiturs, reverse the verses, noun the verbs, discard what won't fit, squint and twist and flip until an inkling - of maternal neglect, American hubris, or some other unutterable thing - shimmers into view, as if through a frosted window.
To intercept Walker's signals can be brain-mangling work. You can lose an evening to it, head hitting the pillow full of flowcharts with things like 'tooth fairies' at the top and 'incest?' at the bottom. You might find that work torturous. But I want to suggest it is just like the torture that made 'The Electrician' sing: the lethally intimate zap, from the crank to the groin to the heart, that feels, for a second, like love.
Tilt was Scott Walker's first album following over a decade of silence, and whatever else he may have done during his exile, brightening his musical horizon was not on the agenda. Indescribably barren and unutterably bleak, Tilt is the wind that buffets the gothic cathedrals of everyone's favorite nightmares....Tilt is not an easy album to love; it's not even that easy to listen to. First impressions place it on a plateau somewhere between Nico's Marble Index and Lou Reed's Metal Machine Music - before long, familiarity and the elitist chattering of so many well-heeled admirers rendered both albums mere forerunners to some future shift in mainstream taste. And maybe that is the fate awaiting Tilt, although one does wonder precisely what monsters could rise from soil so belligerently barren. Even Metal Machine Music could be whistled, after all.
- Vinyl LP
- Farmer in the City
- The Cockfighter
- Bouncer See Bouncer...
- Face on Breast
- Bolivia '95
- Patriot (A Single)