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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Review of the Moment: Neil Young's 'Storytone'

As usual, initial reviews of Neil Young's latest album 'Storytone' are all over the map.

Here's a comment on First Listen: Neil Young, 'Storytone' : NPR by Dan1:

This is as raw and vulnerable as I've seen Neil on any album since at least Harvest Moon and perhaps ever ... his earlier work, even when deeply personal, contained much more obscured lyrics ...

the evolution of his lyrics becoming less abstract has been many years in the making and on this album he lays it out there in an amazingly personal way ... the intimacy in moments on the album is stunning ... few artists are putting themselves out there today, let alone in the second half of their careers ... the two formats is just an amazing bonus ... both are beautiful in their own ways and the album overall is very solid ... the songs also play well live as we saw in Boston/Philly ...

some of the trollish comments are becoming downright offensive ... we all like some of Neil's output more and some less but the deep negativity is inappropriate for a site where fans congregate to share and celebrate Neil prolific output ... Its like, find something you love and go focus on it, do yourself and all of us a favor, if you hate Neil or his output man you're in the wrong place.

I look back on this year and am moved by the two albums Neil has put out, the intimacy of the live solo acoustic shows, and all the other stuff that's been thrown in ... Neil's vitality and vibrancy as an artist is poignant and is a privilege to witness .... Long May He Run ...

one more thing, I loved how on 'A Letter Home' he told his mother he still has a lot of work to do down here ...
Thanks Dan! We're still awaiting our pre-order to listen to the orchestra version in all of it's fullest presentation.

As an aside regarding the troll comments, it just seems to come with the territory. We do find it amusing how folks like your self observe this odd behavior while at the same time we're accused of deleting negative comments here @ TW?! Gee, we must have missed this one, this one and this one. Imagine that... accused of something you didn't do... what type of person would do such a thing???

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At 10/30/2014 05:46:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is a lovely record, will grow on people, and will endure

At 11/01/2014 04:32:00 AM, Blogger Mikkelrev said...

Yes, this is a beautiful record. It has been a long time since I played a record over and over, and still wanting one more time.

What amazes me when reading TW, is all the holy moralists we have got here these days. People seems to know everything abouth Neil and Pegy, about Hannah, about everyone's relationship, and most of all they seem to be justified to make a judgment. And, even more interesting, they evaluate Neil's records and songs from their own moral judgment about his life, his decisions and his relationships. "Oh no, this song is no good because I know this is about Pegi which he left!", "this performance is no good because he made it in front of Pegi!", "this record is a piece of crap because Neil didn't find a girl when he was young, a girl which he should have married and lived together with his whole life, and he should nevner have thought of another woman, ever!". Thqat is a strange way of evaluating his songs and records. Do you have the same standard when judging a Bob Dylan-song or a Leonard Cohen-song? In that case, all the fantastic Dylna-songs now seems to be pieces of crap all of them, because Dylan was probably not a holy angel all the time. And if you are not a holy angel - and we know! We konow everything, always! - then your songs and records are no good.

I'm amazed and suprised, but most of all quite sick and tired, of all these holy angels and moralists that seems to know everything about Neil, and that are justified to make a moral judgment, and evaluate his songs from their own holy moralist judgments.

Keep on, Neil, this record is a gem!

At 11/01/2014 07:47:00 PM, Blogger Alan said...

Ya, we don't have the right to judge Neil's marriage outcome. We don't know what happened, who did what and when, to who, etc. The fact that he stayed married for 36 years as a Rock Star is amazing, in and of itself. The man's output rate is astonishing. I find most of it very inspiring and excellent. If you find it syrupy or just not as good as Time Fades Away, so what. I'm with TW here. Don't hate on him. And if you are a Republican, scratching your head and wallowing in Climate Denial, go love on the Koch Brothers site or something. Thanks.

At 11/02/2014 06:32:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Thanks for the great review! I absolutely agree that it´s none of our business to speculate about private affairs. Let´s just celebrate another example of a unique artist´s brilliant mind. There´s hardly any music I´ve ever listened to that´s more revealing and exposing the singer´s emotions than this album. True art is able to touch your soul and Storytone indeed is one precious piece of art.

At 11/04/2014 10:35:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

In talking with several fellow lifelong fans who indicated they aren't exactly knocked out by the album and specifically cite the lyrics as the source of their disappointment, two things became clear: (1) they are uncomfortable with Neil's lyrical candor regarding the breakup and the new relationship so soon, relative to the announcement that the marriage was over - there's virtually zero reading between the lines necessary here to know who he's singing about in each song - and the feeling is that maybe a couple of years down the line when feelings aren't quite so raw would be the more appropriate time for these tunes; and (2) many, if not most, of the lyrics have the quality of diary/letter entries without much regard to rhyming or meter, and while neither rhyme nor meter has been of huge concern to Neil in the past, when you're writing out-and-out love songs, a bit more artfulness and poetry (say, enhanced deployment of metaphor and simile - a depiction of s melting snowman ain't exactly poetic) would seem to be in order.

For my part, I am liking the album so far, but not totally sold just yet. The music's all over the map, and I like the unexpected quality of it, but I have to at least partially agree with the folks mentioned above - some of the lyrics are pretty awkward. (For the record: both my wife and I were very depressed to learn of Neill and Pegi's breakup, but I do understand how hard it can be to make a marriage last that long, "Rock Star" syndrome or just among plain civilians.)

At 11/04/2014 01:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Listening to Neil Youngs album Storytone I find his voice is most exquisite. The orchestra on this album is like putting an overcoat on the Venus De Milo.

Best wishes Thrasher and all Neil Fans.

Madame Bovary

At 11/17/2014 12:13:00 AM, Blogger forest rph said...

There's an irony in Neil's Storytone CD & Jackson Browne's I'm Alvie CD: Both seemed to be influenced by Daryl Hannah; Neil, being in a relationship with her, & Jackson Browne coming off a relationship with her.


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