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Neil Young & Crazy Horse's new album "COLORADO" is now available for pre-order. Order here
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Friday, November 01, 2019

META-REVIEW: COLORADO by Neil Young & Crazy Horse


NYCH
Billy, Neil, Nils, & Ralph - April 2019

via Neil Young Archives | Times Contrarian
photo: dhlovelife

With the release last week of the album 'Colorado' by Neil Young & Crazy Horse, we have seen lots of comments by fans on their reactions on the posts FIRST IMPRESSIONS: 'Colorado' by Neil Young & Crazy Horse and MEGA-REVIEW: COLORADO by Neil Young & Crazy Horse | Alan's Album Archives.

Comments were in the usual range of "great" to "mediocre" as has been the case consistently since we started this blog back in 1996. The man just can't seem to ever escape his back catalog legacy of the string of 1970's classic which now stands as his career benchmark. So what about other critics on the album 'Colorado' by Neil Young & Crazy Horse?


"I want it up as loud as it can go!" - Neil
Neil Young & Crazy Horse in the Studio

(Frame via film Mountaintop)

From Neil Young’s “Colorado”: Inside the Crazy Horse reunion at a studio outside Telluride - New album, recorded over 11 days in April, out Friday | Denver Post by Matt Sebastian:
The record’s title, Nils Lofgren said, came later, after Crazy Horse had done its part. There were other working titles, including the idea of borrowing titles from some of the songs on the album.

“I think he settled on ‘Colorado’ after going through a few titles and realizing since that’s where we were, and it was such a special gathering,” Lofgren said. “It was also kind of neat, too, because there was just this great vibe where you kind of felt like the place was ours. This beautiful setting. There weren’t a lot of people around, and we just got to focus on the music. It was a beautiful studio.”

Neil Young w/ Engineer John Hanlon

From Neil Young’s ‘Colorado’ Marks Triumphant Return for Crazy Horse by Doug Heselgrave:
Like the best Crazy Horse records, Colorado balances the heavier tracks with slower, more introspective songs. “Milky Way” is one of the most beautiful, tender songs that Young has recorded in the last 30 years. Characterized by understated, yearning guitar and naked vocals, it is the album’s strongest track. “Green Is Blue,” a plea for preserving nature that is much more subtle than similar songs Young has written in recent years, is simple, understated, and lovely. Instead of pointing fingers, he plaintively sings “There’s so much we didn’t do / that we knew we had to do.” It’s the kind of intimate song — with only a vintage piano accompanying his vocals — he has always excelled at.

For a guy with his heart in the right place, it’s ironic that the weakest songs on the record are the overtly political ones. Where “Milky Way” and “Green Is Blue” succeed because of the element of human frailty that Young incorporates into the lyrics, “Shut It Down” and “Rainbow of Colors” sound more like diatribes and are not nearly as powerful, though I agree with everything he’s singing about.
From Neil Young’s first album in seven years offers cranky protest, unanswerable questions | Chicago Tribune by Greg Kot:
There are several other pretty ballads on “Colorado,” balanced by a few electric excursions, notably the 13-minute “She Showed Me Love.” From the first note, there’s no mistaking that craggy guitar, the rise-and-fall pulse, the hypnotic fade into nothingness that suggests the song never really ends. In many ways, the Young-Crazy songbook is carved out of a single slab of stone, the endless endless of a jam that has never been particularly “cool” or technically proficient, but emblematic of something deeper in the human spirit.

While locking in with his bandmates with a crude, off-the-cuff intensity that suggests a genre unto itself, Young spouts what’s been on his mind lately: ecological disaster, lost friends and the redemption of new love. Young’s political statements are more like manifestos, pamphlets that demand to be read aloud over a megaphone in the town square rather than sung, and Young’s protest sometimes arrives smothered in cheese:

“I saw Mother Nature pushing Earth in a baby carriage”; “What about the animals? What about the birds and bees?” “There’s a rainbow of colors in the old U.S.A., no one’s gonna whitewash those colors away.”



From Neil Young 62: Colorado | Everybody’s Dummy by Wardo:
With a blast of harmonica, “Think Of Me” is a jaunty acoustic strum that sounds more like Prairie Wind than Crazy Horse until the harmonies kick in. This promising start is followed by the sludge of “She Showed Me Love”, which ponders the fate of Mother Nature in the hands of “old white guys” and “young folks”. It’s long enough to begin with, but then plods away for another seven minutes of jamming and repeats of the title on top of the six it took to get there. As the only lengthy track on the album, it seems odd that this was the one groove given such an honor.

That’s basically the template for the album: softer songs alternating with loud ones. “Olden Days”, about losing touch with friends for various reasons, sports a nice little riff echoed by the voice and piano (uncredited, though it’s probably Nils), but it seems to be over awfully quickly. Then it’s back to doom, as “Help Me Lose My Mind” alternates an agitated verse with a more inspired chorus change (musically, anyway). The sad little metaphor of “Green Is Blue” is effective, and in case you missed the point, “Shut It Down” pounds it into your head. “Milky Way” was the first track streamed to the public, and while its first-take demo quality underwhelmed then, it works much better in this context. Plus, with its tension being more quiet than loud, it provides welcome contrast.

The charming “Eternity” not only revives earlier lyric ideas, such as a house of love and a train of love, but it also features the tapdancing skills of Nils Lofgren (“click, clack, clickety clack” indeed). Set to a tune we can’t put our finger on, “Rainbow Of Colors” is another attempt at an alternate national anthem, in that it offers a positive message instead of just saying why the other side is wrong. One might think the album would end there, but “I Do” is a tender love song that takes us out very gently, along the lines of “Music Arcade” and “Without Rings”. (Those who bought the vinyl—or paid the subscription—got a bonus in the form of the moody but moving “Truth Kills”, plus a live solo electric “Rainbow Of Colors”.)

From Rusted Moon's Colorado roundup: (Thanks Ralf!)

Bob Doerschuk, USA TODAY : "So, if you enjoy the teenage band making noise in your neighbor's garage as much as you appreciate the combination of poetry and truth, then Colorado is an excellent fit."

Ian Parker, For Folk's Sake : "These songs flowed out of Young, thinking about life, the passing of time, but most importantly of all his fears of environmental change, which is not new to Young, of course, in the 1970s 'After The Gold Rush' sang of nature on the run, but it's an issue that is becoming more and more important with every moment. "

Joe Breen, Irish Times : "Young is often the best at letting his songs breathe in familiar arrangements with well-known players - the line from 1969 to 2019 is easy to spot, even though the tortuous guitar of 'She Showed Me Love' is the Patience with over 13 minutes of testing, while his lyrics can be open, awkward, even naive, they convey real emotional power when they are shaped by private passion and public anger. " 4 out of 5

Doug Collette, Glide Magazine: "But it's a determined sincerity that pervades the acoustic guitar-based expression of devotion, aptly titled 'I Do', by placing this comparatively calm five minutes as the conclusion of Colorado, Neil Young says, what needs to be said about the lasting connections in his life, not least the ones he cultivates so fruitfully with Crazy Horse. "

Alexis Petridis, The Guardian: "But the end result is yet another Neil Young album that enriches the non-bad and OK bunch he has accumulated over the past decade, while a steady stream of archive releases shows how awesome Neil Young is at his best can: as good as any artist in rock history, and certainly better than that. " 3 out of 5

Arne Willander, Rolling Stone: "The best comes to the end: the spooky softly groaned and intensely whispered" I Do ". In the Déjà-vus, in the alternation of hallucinatory reverie and rusty rumble, of bucolic Sunday peace and sprawling mantra" Colorado "mimics Dramaturgy of Young's concerts - with the band that still makes the most of its mildly stoned poetry, its adventurous excursions and its sentimental reminiscences. " Plate of the month

Gérard Otremba, Sounds & Books: "An album shaped by warning doom fantasies and the love of Mother Nature, musically beautifully performed in the rumbling Crazy Horse cosmos."

Jeremy Winograd, Slant Magazine: "Crazy Horse left old Neil out of a crisis in the '80s, so it would be natural to hope that her latest effort, Colorado, would prove to be the perfect antidote to his last fallow period In this regard, the album does not give a definitive conclusion, as its high-class Crazy Horse guitar work, a small handful of charming-intimate ballads, are at times adversely affected by the same problems that shaped Young's most recent solo work, including particularly unmelodious vocals and a tendency on awkward, blurred Facebook environmental and political ranting " 3 of 5

Alexander Baechle, Riff Magazine: "Although Colorado is essentially intimate, it's deceptively diverse, and while there's no shortage of cacophonic rock, gentle cuts like 'Eternity' and 'Green Is Blue' make meaningful variations. Concentrating on a major seventh chord, the album concludes with a look of gratitude and long experience, and Young's harmonica returns briefly, this time following the lonely heights and narrow gorges of the Rockies. "

Jesse Jarnow, WIRED: "There are jams and half-baked ideas, there are indelible melodies and eco-anthems and echoes of remembrance, there is a rhythm track with Lofgren's tap dancing shoes running through an octave vendor ('Eternity'), Ralph Molinas and Billy Talbot's otherworldly sense of space on perhaps the most exquisite, most fragile Crazy Horse jam of all time ('Milky Way') - the kind of creations Young wants to make the listener experience the same fidelity as the band. "

Nick Rosenblade, Clash Music: " The return of Lofgren inspired and Crazy Horse sounds better than since 'Greendale' in 2003. The guitars feel firmer and have more bite, Young sounds refreshed but enjoyable, fair 'Colorado' will not approaching the pantheon of classic Neil Young albums, but few of his most recent releases will be, as 'Le Noise' is the last to come closer, but 'Colorado' is still a very good album. " 8 out of 10

Leonie Cooper, NME: "Sure, it's not as relentless as 2015's 'The Monsanto Years' - his concept album about the evils of the monolithic, genetically modified agribusiness - but his commitment to a better way of doing things permeates each one of them 10 songs here. " 4 out of 5

Michael Bonner, UNCUT: "There is an instinctual urge to compare this newest horse with earlier versions - from the melodic intimacy of the Danny Whitten era to the emotional guitar playing, the solos and the elemental weight of the 1970s incarnation, all the way to the . brutal feedback 90s renaissance even Young is responsible for the fact that he - albeit unconsciously -. in advance of Colorado's publication live classical films from Sampedro era (Muddy track, Catalyst 1990, Rust Never Sleeps) streamed to NYA Lofgrens work feels more complementary than determinative, and serves the best traditions of Crazy Horse, rather than trying to drastically transform it. " 8 out of 10


COLORADO by Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Release Date: October 25, 2019 - Pre-order now
(Please shop locally & independently. But if you can't, we appreciate your supporting Thrasher's Wheat by clicking this link. Thank you!!!)

#CrazyHorse4HoF

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1 Comments:

At 11/02/2019 10:18:00 AM, Blogger Biteme said...

there are awful lyrics. there are epic guitar bursts. there are pretty melodies and harmonies. it's a lot better than I thought it would be.

some people dig it, some don't. works for me.

 

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