2 years after being given the boot of out of Pink Floyd, Syd Barrett took it upon himself to record as a solo artist. 1970's The Madcap Laughs is the first effort.
Like an audio diary of his mental disintegration, Madcap is a deeply flawed album. There's moments that are quite clearly salvaged by overdubs but Barrett's sloppy guitar playing and off-key vocals can't be hidden. Bad musicianship aside, Barrett's magnificent lyrics are still firmly intact and shine most when you can hear the genius of Barrett occasionally fight off his mental suffering. It's really more of an interesting character study than it is a pleasant listen. Producer Malcolm Jones compared it to "hanging out your dirty laundry for everyone to see". In a way, he's right.
3 James Joyce poems out of 5