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Moving, Matriarchal, Majestic - 100%

CHAIRTHROWER, September 12th, 2017
Written based on this version: 2014, Digital, Bucketheadland

As much as I dig Buckethead's Pike 51 - Claymation Courtyard, I find Pike 65 - Hold Me Forever (In Memory Of My Mom Nancy York Carroll) tops it by a longshot. Believe me when I say it's a celebration of life like no other, the Bucketed One's ultimate loving tribute to his deceased mother, and in a sense, an ode to motherhood in general.

Originally sequenced so the respective track names spell out her initials - "N", "Y", "C" - and markedly "4", "Ev", "Er", Buckethead soars to unprecedented heights all the while expressing a wonderful gamut of emotions, starting with a billowing and touching lullaby evoking progression in the opener - which also includes a spot-on "womb"-like rhythmic drum pattern early on (02:49 and 04:37 to be precise) - making the first three tracks/ seven minutes a compelling metaphor for the gestation period. That said, Brian is "born"/ duly takes off on "4" as he cranks up the tempo and outright intensity of his mind-blowing chops/ shreds; the rest of Pike 65, for all intents and purposes, is a no-holds barred explosion of titillating solos to the back-drop of high flying, "feel good" guitar riffs and upbeat drumming.

Twelve minutes in, it feels like you're duly "surfing with aliens", the spine-tingling and expressive Joe Satriani/ Steve Vai-like phrasing withstanding! Left agape, I'm rubbing the tears out of my eyes while my ears are gleefully shouting "yummy! Forget the stapler, I need to nail my hat to my head this time around!

Unbelievably, this pike gets even better with the outstanding, never-ending (thirteen and a half minute) "Er" where Buckethead duly takes off, letting 'er rip with reckless abandon and passion, thus showering the listener with a devoted son's eternal love for his mother, who's passed on but will always be remembered. I'm pretty sure Nancy's smiling from above! As for me, I feel like a contented little tyke once again, securely clutching his Teddy bear tight.