Neil Young - Ragged Glory
Neil returns truly to a rough and ready sound, to a live sound. The opening 'Country Home' goes on for seemingly an eternity, but you can lose yourself in his guitar. Neil was never truly a guitar hero, just that the sound he got was real. He seemed real, even when you worried that he really wasn't. He'd come back with something that sounded either so ramshackle or so real that you'd rather just go with it, than be a cynic. Perhaps he really is real, you ever thought of that? Perhaps this isn't just marketing. I know this is a hard concept to grasp in this day and age, but you know, try to trust at least somebody. 'White Line' follows the opening song, and this is a serious song. It could have been recorded at any stage during the Neil Young career, but that's not actually a bad thing. If you could say the same about a 1990 Paul McCartney song, you'd be laughing, you know?? But, this is Neil Young, and people tend to dismiss, or say the same things about him, whatever he does. 'Fuckin Up'? It does what it says it does. It's nasty rock n roll music. Surprisingly, nasty rock n roll played by some hippy sixties survivor, but you know. Neil knows what he's doing. He does things without giving a damn what others think. Just whatever he feels like at the time, one of the most honest performers in the entire history of rock music.
In some ways, this is a typical Neil Young album. Which is why fans of any era of Neil music should at least dig something here. 'Over And Over' is eight minutes long, lots of distorted guitar, etc, etc. It's not actually great material, i'd put the quality of the material here as being slightly below the quality of the material on 'Freedom', but the sound and feel here is better. Overall, it all evens out. 'Mansion On The Hill' gets me, great riff. 'Love And Only Love' manages to be longer than ten minutes, but whatever. It works, just about. Neil has that commitment about him, for this album. It's not great material, it's no work of art. This is just Rock N Roll.
Country Home / White Line / Fuckin Up / Over And Over / Love To Burn / Farmer John / Mansion On The Hill / Days That Used To Be / Love And Only Love / Mother Earth