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Friday, April 24, 2020

Neil Young's "Road of Plenty": Coming in 2021


Neil Young - 1989

Per latest posting on Neil Young Archives, another archival album is planned for 2021 titled "Road of Plenty".

Working with producer Niko Bolas, "Road of Plenty" will contain recordings made in the run up to "Freedom" in the late 1980s. The album has live takes of "Crazy Horse", studio recordings with the "Bluenotes", as well as, the 1989's legendary "Saturday Night Live" musical guest (see Neil Young on SNL: "Considered to be one of the most intense live television studio performances ever".)


"Probably the greatest guitar rock album ever"
~~ UNCUT Magazine's Allan Jones
"Eldorado" - Neil Young and the Restless

"Road of Plenty" has also appeared as an import titled "Eldorado". An album review UNCUT Magazine's Allan Jones modestly said: "The simple fact is that 'Eldorado" is probably the greatest guitar rock album ever." Jones continues describing the album's sound as: "holocaustal, post-apocalypse ruptures and manglings, great bloody swathes of feedback, random distortions, and gashes of sound, the reckless weather of psychotic abandon."

ELDORADO
1989 - Reprise 20P2-2651 (CD-EP, Japan and Australia only)

"Cocaine Eyes" – 4:24
"Don't Cry" – 5:00
"Heavy Love" – 5:09
"On Broadway" – 4:57
"Eldorado" – 6:03

"Eldorado"'s band The Restless consisted of Chad Cromwell and Rick Rosas. The EP contains different mixes of three songs that subsequently appeared on Young's 1989 album Freedom, "Don't Cry," "On Broadway," and "Eldorado," and two tracks not available on any other recording, "Cocaine Eyes" and "Heavy Love." The "Don't Cry" track on Eldorado is longer than the later version published on Freedom (5:00 vs. 4:14).

From Album Review of Neil Young and the Restless: Eldorado by Allan Jones:
The simple fact is that 'Eldorado" is probably the greatest guitar rock album ever.

Parts of it are like nothing you've ever heard, holocaustal, post -apocalypse ruptures and manglings, great bloody swathes of feedback, random distortions, and gashes of sound, the reckless weather of psychotic abandon. It's almost as if Young listened to the rather docile, reverential cover of his songs on the "Bridge" tribute album, listened to The Pixies and Soul Train and Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. and thought to himself, "Hey, kids - THIS is how you do it..."At which point, he plugs in his guitar, cranks the volume up to max and begins to roar.

The album opens with a stomach-churning squeal of feedback. "That's Loud," says a voice in the control romm. "Yeah, " Neil laughs, tearing off another howling riff. "Sounds good, though. lets= try one like that..." What follows is like a grenade going off in your lap or having your head shaved from the inside with a house brick. The cut is called "Cocaine Eyes", and it is four minutes of sheer carnage and hysteria. "Ain't a day goes by I don't burn a little bit of my soul," Young screams above an avalanche of drums and bass and his disfigured slaughterhouse guitar, and it is so intense you feel like you're choking on your own blood. This is the heaviest music I've heard in years-infernal, brutal, massive, almost unbelievable in its sheer crunching power.

There's more epic guitar thuggery on "Don't Cry", where ringing death-knell tolls echo cavernously and Young stares hollow-eyed into a seething mess of conflicting emotions-does he love the girl, does he want to kill her...is that her blood on his hands...? This is some sick F***of a track, slow, churning, a maelstrom o coagulating feedback, amplified explosions, relentless bass detonations. (neesah comments....I don't see the murder he refers to in the words neil sings...can someone help me there?? I have always thought he cheated on her, and has now asked her to leave him...."my big lies...")

The atmosphere is full of malevolent dread, spite, jealousy and homicidal fury, an abbatoir of noise and catastrophe-"Down By the River", 20 years on, fed through hell's own blender and spewed out in raw, maggoty chinks. The long, chilling coda is the stuff of nightmares, Young's high-pitched whine hanging torn and forlorn in the strafed, abysmal air and one final guitar hemorrhage.

"Heavy Love" is a similar mutilation, with the most eyeball-scalding guitar riff since the Stones' "Undercover Of The Night". Listening to this is like being beaten up by stormtroopers. Its exhilarating, teeth-bared madness and blood-boiling urgency reminds me of Dylan's manic recent performance at Wembley. The feverish energy of these tracks is even carried over into what initially seemed like an unpromising version of "On Broadway". But the old chestnut is stripped to the bone, bent out of shape, its spine rearranged and finally snapped in a turmoil of excruciating guitar explosions and a rhythm attack that leaves the listener is a cold, mangled sweat. "Give me that crack, " Young hollers, deranged. "Where's the crack????"

Only the closing title track offers and relief from this sordid extravaganza of noise and terror, this unstoppable aural blitz. "Eldorado" is full of sweet, mocking Spanish guitar signatures, a leering sense of oppression. The lyric is full of obscure references to crystal balls, gypsies, riders on a hill, fires in the fields, random shootings, drug deals, political corruption, women crying against the walls of an adobe mission, assassinations. The last verse is about a bullfighter, and I have no explanation for it. All I can say is that the song is caught somewhere between Robert Stone's " A Flag For Sunrise" and Dylan's "Senor (Tales of Yankee Power)" and set to the music of disaster-squalid, intense, murderous.

An that's it. Neil's still right out there.

Who will they send against him now?

More on Eldorado from the FUNHOUSE! reviews by Steve Vetter (Farmer John).

Also, see Eldorado: Albums In Order Review Series by Mike "Expecting 2 Fly" Cordova.

Also, see 1986 Buffalo Springfield Rehearsal with Neil Young, Stephen Stills & Richie Furay rehearsing songs "Road of Plenty" and "Eldorado".

Also, see NYAS Broken Arrow Issue Number 036 - August, 1989 Eldorado: Albums Review by Ian MacCarthy, page 35.



In other developments, CV19 has impacted schedules for planned archival albums releases. "Homegrown" was supposed to appear on June 19th and now postponed indefinitely/TBD?

Labels: , , ,


10 Comments:

At 4/24/2020 11:48:00 AM, Blogger Andrew J said...

I was fortunate to get El Dorado from a friend in Australia when we met up in Europe the time it came out, 1989 I believe. Unfortunately I have the cassette, regret I didn't ask for the CD as I think CD's were just getting manufactured and I didn't have a player at the time. Cocaine Eyes and Heavy Love are two of the most powerful rockers in his catalog. Plus, the acoustic version of Cocaine Eyes from Amsterdam on 13 Dec 89 is blistering.

 
At 4/24/2020 11:55:00 AM, Blogger thrasher said...

Thanks Andrew.

Similarly, it took us awhile to hunt down this Japanese import. We probably paid more for this CD then any CD prior. Like $25 + int'l postage etc.

but worth every penny at the time. simply mind blowing.

Some of the review quotes by Jones are priceless:

"holocaustal, post-apocalypse ruptures and manglings, great bloody swathes of feedback, random distortions, and gashes of sound, the reckless weather of psychotic abandon."

"Only the closing title track offers and relief from this sordid extravaganza of noise and terror, this unstoppable aural blitz. "

" Listening to this is like being beaten up by stormtroopers. Its exhilarating, teeth-bared madness and blood-boiling urgency reminds me of Dylan's manic recent performance at Wembley."

"The atmosphere is full of malevolent dread, spite, jealousy and homicidal fury, an abbatoir of noise and catastrophe-"Down By the River", 20 years on, fed through hell's own blender and spewed out in raw, maggoty chinks."

"so intense you feel like you're choking on your own blood. This is the heaviest music I've heard in years-infernal, brutal, massive, almost unbelievable in its sheer crunching power."

"like a grenade going off in your lap or having your head shaved from the inside with a house brick. "


 
At 4/24/2020 12:42:00 PM, Blogger Jim said...

In terms of the Crazy Horse live material I'm wondering if they are talking about the little mini-set Crazy Horse did like at this show:

https://sugarmtn.org/sm_show.php?show=198709030

It was between the solo set and the Crazy Horse set with horns. Fantastic stuff!

 
At 4/24/2020 01:17:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

@ Jim - yeah, something like that. Or maybe Young & The Restless
via 1989-02-18, Municipal Auditorium, Eureka, California, USA | Sugar Mountain
https://sugarmtn.org/sm_show.php?show=198902180

or somewhere in between?!

 
At 4/24/2020 02:46:00 PM, Blogger wardo said...

This would be a nice fill-in of the Bluenotes-to-Freedom era. But I can't begin to start drooling over the possibilities until at least Homegrown comes out (now due in June) and the rest of the promised releases for this year happen.

Thanks as always for the info and context, Thrasher!

 
At 4/24/2020 02:51:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

The edited 60-0 sounds amazing and Neil says it runs over 17 minutes. We also had a snippet of F@$#’n Up awhile back and it had different lyrics. Not completely sure everything from Eldorado will be included on Road Of Plenty, but whatever ends up being included I’m sure this one will be a rocker of the highest order.

Peace 🙏

 
At 4/24/2020 04:42:00 PM, Blogger Roberto said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 4/24/2020 04:45:00 PM, Blogger Roberto said...

Sorry for the typos..

I own to this record to come back to it , put it in my cd player and give a listen. Don't even remind where I bought it and how much it costed..maybe in Amsterdam or NYC..
Thanks for bringing back my memory to it , a rather unexplored period for me .. gave it a couple of listens and I was already away.. My fault, I admit

 
At 4/24/2020 06:58:00 PM, Blogger Jyldes said...

The Eldorado EP is absolutely fantastic but "Road Of Plenty" seems to be something different that Neil never talked about (it was obviously not in the list we had to vote for...).

Some live tracks from 1986 and 1988 + studio outakes... A kind of improbable mix, very exciting but...

Neil promises us 5 (five !) releases by the end of the year, including Archives 2 for which we have NO information. And everything is progressively postponed, like Homegrown. Ok, the Covid upsets everything but a digital release could still be possible but is not planned.

So, I hope Road Of Plenty will be released in 2021 but this is just one more announcement...

I agree that things are evolving on NYA and that we have more and more unreleased material but everything remains suspicious until you have it in hand.

Excited but not confident !!!

 
At 4/25/2020 07:21:00 AM, Blogger Jyldes said...

By the way, the timeline on NYA has changed a little bit and tracklist of Homegrown and Return To Greendale are available. For Greendale, no bonus tracks like encore. Only Greendale set.

 

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