In terms of melody and mood, this is by far Neil's best album. The tunes are haunting, and the way the rhythm and guitar work together gives you the sense that all your cares are being ironed out.
If you fault Neil's singing on this album, you aren't a true Neil Young fan. Neil isn't a pretty singer like David Cassidy. He's not a finesse artist who wants to wrap up his music in a nice shiny package. What you can hear in Neil's voice is a real person trying to convey feeling through lyrics and melody. There are plenty of singers who have a better voice, but few with Neil's depth of feeling. Another hallmark of his music is his way of letting a guitar solo take the place of a voice to convey a melody that says more than words can say.
Neil really hits his stride with "Oh Lonesome Me" and "I Believe in You." His "Birds" calls to mind "Expecting to Fly"--as if they were parts of the same meditation on loss.
This album should be a staple in your Neil Young collection.
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1 Tell Me Why (2:54)
2 After the Gold Rush (3:45)
3 Only Love Can Break Your Heart (3:05)
4 Southern Man (5:41)
5 Till the Morning Comes (1:17)
6 Oh, Lonesome Me (3:47)
7 Don't Let It Bring You Down (2:56)
8 Birds (2:34)
9 When You Dance You Can Really Love (3:44)
10 I Believe in You (2:24)
11 Cripple Creek Ferry (1:34)
Neil Young Guitar, Producer, Main Performer, Vibraphone, Vocals, Harmonica, Piano
Ralph Molina Drums, Vocals
Greg Reeves Bass
Billy Talbot Bass
Danny Whitten Guitar, Vocals
Jack Nitzsche Piano
Nils Lofgren Piano, Vocals
Stephen Stills Vocals