Neil Young & Crazy Horse: Americana

Album review
Neil Young & Crazy Horse: Americana

Neil Young & Crazy Horse


Label: Reprise
Media: CD
Genre: Rock/pop

Reports earlier this year that Neil Young had made an album of songs by seminal American songwriter Stephen Foster had some expecting a genteel acoustic collection. Guess again. On his first recording with the complete line-up of Crazy Horse in a decade, the Canadian singer, songwriter, and guitarist drapes these classic folk and pop songs in the hi-wattage ragged glory you’d expect from the Godfather of Grunge. It opens with a folk-rock version of Foster’s “Oh Susannah,” first published in 1848. But this arrangement is based on the 1963 recording by Tim Rose and the Big Three, whom Young credits as pioneers of the Americana movement. “She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain” gets the full- throttle, distortion-infused Crazy Horse treatment. Other tracks include Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land,” “Tom Dula,” a variation on the better- known folk-60s revival ballad “Tom Dooley,” “Gallows Pole,” and “God Save the Queen” (the melody for “My Country Tis of Thee”). A surprising inclusion is “Get a Job,” a 1957 hit for the doo-wop group the Silhouettes. The final result is one of Young’s best efforts, as he and the band are obviously enjoying themselves throughout these vibrant sessions.

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  • primary artist, Neil Young & Crazy Horse

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