Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What is that Noise?

I recently heard that Neil Young was coming out with a new album, "Le Noise", due out September 28. I was so looking forward to hearing it!

Tonight on the way to Office Max for a new mouse... a song came on the radio. As I was listening, I first thought, "WHAT is this station playing?" I couldn't believe what I was hearing on my usually reliable FM station. The song was completely out of character for them.

My 2nd thought was, "Who IS this guy? He's trying too hard...." In the next instant, I recognized the voice - it was Neil Young!

The song was "Walk With Me", (click title to hear track!) but instead I wanted to run away. I know I am probably going to disappoint some die-hard Neil Young fans (myself included!) by saying that the tune was hard to listen to!

Missing from the track were Neil's charming yet quirky signature vocals. Instead it delivered the slash and burn of an over-played guitar. By mid-song, I began wondering if something was wrong with the man. It reads "psychedelic 60's trying too hard to advance to the new millennium but held back by the 70's".

The crying guitar measures seemed totally unnecessary and over-done. I could find no melody compelling me to sing along. The lyrics were insipid-such a surprise coming from the man who did "Needle & the Damage Done".

Some friends suggested that I not post this review until I listen to the entire album, but I call them as I hear them. I can only hope other tracks from the 8 song album, offer more promise and are easier on the ear!


  1. It might Grow on you.The Last 3 or 4 Stones LP's Have grown on me, Crank it and Relax, You can't love them all.But you can like em...Some LP's are for diff Moods.or times... The 60's and 70's are over> So are the The 80's thank God !! & The 90's. Keep Rockin in The Free World for as long You can. Rock On Soul Sister.

  2. Hi Pam,
    I wasn't aware that he has an album coming out until I read your post, thanks for the info! I am hopeful that the new collection will have some gems that I'll appreciate. Good reading you!

  3. Oh heck!
    I haven't heard any of it yet but was (thank you!) looking forward to hearing it.
    Thing is with Mr Young is that he set the bar very high initially and has continued to be both prolific and generally close to the mark in quality and originality. BUT... being brave, much like yourself, his albums do rise and fall. It isn't as if he has ever done an album that I don't like...but the worry is in attitude as you say, cos whatever the subject he chose he always seemed to have a passion for it...
    Confession time I struggled with 'Living with the War'...BUT at least it was full of passion and had a character...
    I just did a rough count and he is at around 48 official releases since Buffalo Springfield in Dec 66 till now.
    48 albums in 44 years...
    So all that said maybe I look forward still to listening to the new effort...and when we have both heard the album it will be interesting to compare notes!
    Thanks David

  4. Pam, I completely agree with you! Also, I
    love your blog; insightful,intelligent and fun.

  5. Hmmm (umph!)
    Thing is now it is hard to hear without prejudice.. I recognised the guitar sound and liked the noise/riff..
    His vocal sounds weak and forced, but often it does sound fragile...
    The biggest dilemma is that like yourself I so want to like it that I find myself looking for good bits to hang on...
    I have found some more footage of the producer talking about the making of it, see if that sheds some (moon) light. He asked to only record during certain parts of the luna cycle!


    So my conclusion is I hope the rest is better but wonder if as the producer was saying he felt there were bits of Neil that haven't been expressed yet musically...very likely...but I wonder if in his quest to find the Holy Grail he has forced Neil to try to hard for what I feel is normally a more spontaneous and natural process
    David out! Sigh!!

  6. Tx for the warning, LadyPn. See you around ;)

  7. Well Not that bad but way to much reverb,Hitchhiker is better, will have to see him play live to get a better feel for this one.


  9. Sorry, I love it...your friend, ElDorkoPunkRetro

  10. Hey D! Thanks for reading my blog! & no need to apologize for liking it, that's what makes music so amazing - subject to individual interpretation & appreciation!

  11. I understand what you're saying, but...

    Seriously, I can't remember the last time I ever listened to a song, all the way through, that didn't have drums...I mean, punk and drums just go together...yet, this Neil Young track really grabbed me...

    Total genius...I wish I could do half of what he's done, musically...

    Thank you for the response!! See you on blip!

  12. Sounds like good ol classic brother Neil to me..., True Neil Young fans I know will feel the same way.