Jeff Buckley So Real: Songs from Jeff Buckley

Now ten years after his death, one of contemporary rock’s greats, Jeff Buckley has still got a grasp on the nation. A slew of posthumous releases have solidified the fact that if you didn’t know about his ethereal, pure songwriting talents when he was alive, you have no excuse not to now. Considering Buckley only released one true studio LP, Grace, it’s no surprise fans are still searching for closure. This collection of odds and ends, scrounged from compilations of live recordings, as well as diligent studio recorded picks ("Grace” and "The Sky is a Landfill” are in fine form), makes for a well-rounded representation of Buckley’s work. Live cuts like "So Real” and "Mojo Pin” (off 1993’s Live at Sin-e,/i>) have an edge of honesty that’s so slick you’ll be slightly less disappointed abut the fact that you’ll never hear them played live. The album closes with the glorious "Hallelujah,” which even after repeat listens never looses its urgency, and a previously unavailable Smith cover of "I Know Its Over,” which is stuffed with the emotional intensity Buckley will always be known for. If listening to these reissues and "best of” cuts is the closest we can get to the real thing, the record companies have been doing a great job. (Legacy)