Neil Young as a solo artist has always portrayed a poignant touch for the softer side of his sound. While every softness needs a harder edge, his time with Crazy Horse has offered that up. With his new album Return To Greendale, he retouches his time with the band in a live setting. Not just a live album but also a concert film, Young and the band travel down the road of these songs with vigor while never skipping a beat. The show mixed with a play returns to his 2003 album Greendale and offers plenty of intriguing touches along the ride.
“Falling From Above” opens things up and already you can sink your teeth into the album. The energy of the track that plays against the audience with its meandering sway reminds you of how the album played out. Where “Double E” entertains that grizzled fuzz that Young has made sound so well, it’s the melodic touches that work with his unique vocals. The same can be said for “Carmichael,” just ebbing with tone from the electric and embodying the best parts of Young with Crazy Horse.
But just as “Bandit” blends the piano so well with the down tuned guitar and as “Bringin’ Down Dinner” evokes plenty of passion from the organ lead track, the true winner here comes on “Be The Rain.” The gurgled and fuzz driven tone of the guitar, the snap from the drums and the thump of the bass all come together with the piano to offer a memorable set of moments. The group vocals, the message of the song about the planet and Young’s own voice make the track stand out. The echo of how refreshed the band sounds here works on multiple levels while still holding the album’s core in tact.
Return To Greendale is available to purchase on various formats and bundles from Warner Records. It can also be purchased in all digital outlets and streamed on all services.
Image Credits: Photo by DH Lovelife.