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5 Essential Neil Young records. Your picks are?

Discussion in 'Music to Your Ears' started by Geoff738, Feb 24, 2016.

  1. insanitizer

    insanitizer Former Member

    Mar 14, 2016
    Eau Claire, WI
    Who else is as relevant + vital + influential to the rock music scene as they were 50-60 years ago? Nobody but Neil comes to mind. Also I was wondering if we could change it up a bit and add "5 FAVE SONGS by Neil Percival Young" to the conversation. Man I am really enjoying this site! Thanks tdpri. -David
    pondcaster and Mahnmut26 like this.

  2. insanitizer

    insanitizer Former Member

    Mar 14, 2016
    Eau Claire, WI
    Man I am enjoying this site! There are some cool dudes and like minded peoples, fun.

  3. Mahnmut26

    Mahnmut26 Tele-Meister

    Mar 10, 2016
    Did albums and songs like Insanitizer suggested. I was also forced to include three honorable mentions 'cause five just isn't enough. (Tough even to keep the honorable mentions to three.)
    1. Greendale
    2. Live Rust
    3. American Stars 'n Bars
    4. Time Fades Away
    5. Ragged Glory
    Honorable mention: On the Beach, re*ac*tor, Freedom

    1. Love and Only Love
    2. Be the Rain
    3. Love and War
    4. Like a Hurricane
    5. When You Dance I Can Really Love
    Honorable Mention: Cinnamon Girl, Cortez the Killer, Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016

  4. crossroader

    crossroader Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

    Sep 24, 2004
    Endicott, NY
    Like any "essential list" I might come up with, this is today's version.
    It could all change tomorrow, especially for top Neil Young albums. I've been a huge fan of his since Buffalo Springfield.
    So, here goes...

    Tonight's The Night - dark, twisted, and brilliant
    Ragged Glory - epically powerful rock and roll
    Harvest - overplayed, yes, but for good reason; I almost put After The Gold Rush here. Maybe tomorrow's list. ;)
    Live At The Fillmore - the original Crazy Horse in all it's glory
    Zuma - Crazy Horse re-done, different, but strong as ever

    Honorable mention:
    Harvest Moon - Neil's acoustic side in top form
    Freedom - despite the hideous hat he's wearing in the cover photo, still a pretty great album
    Le Noise - love the collaboration with Daniel Lanois

    Also, the "Live At Red Rocks" DVD/BluRay is great (and Neil plays a Tele on the last couple of songs).

    Oh, and anything from Buffalo Springfield, including the songs he didn't write - most of those still contain his brilliant guitar.
    And I'll never understand those people who complain about his electric guitar playing. To me, he's an incredibly melodic player. To each his own, I guess.

  5. Obelisk

    Obelisk Tele-Holic

    Apr 1, 2013
    NW USA
    Maybe method of production would have been a better description. When he recorded Everybody Knows..., most of the takes were within the first couple of run throughs of a song. From this point onward, Neil approached recording in the same way(until the Landing on Water record where they tried to make a huge snare sound but still play in the same room. Trans should be looked at in a completely different way as it was record made to communicate with Ben). He began to detest the Buffalo Springfield and first solo album because he felt that he overworked the songs during the recording. The Everybody Knows LP was done as a live band with minimal overdubs(probably just some of vocals). He has repeatedly called this approach audio verite and it ran counter to the direction the recording industry was going in the late '60s/early '70s.

    When Neil started with Buffalo Springfield it was predominantly 4 & some 8 track machines(Buffalo Springfield seems mostly 8 track recordings as ATCO/Atlantic spearheaded the 8 track and hi fidelity in general). 68/69 were the first 16 track machines(fist Neil solo LP seems like a 16 track) and 72 are the first 24 track machines. Most of the industry went to elaborate overdubs and overworked recordings whereas Neil went completely in the opposite direction and it served him really well. This economical Zen like approach is really in evidence on After the Gold Rush, Tonight's the Night, Time Fades Away, On the Beach & Zuma. I think he resents that Harvest is so polished even though it was recorded with a similar approach but with really good Nashville studio musicians(not Ralph Molina & Bruce Talbot). The odd part is Neil is one of the first to check digital recording and he seems to be very aware of the recording process in general.
    boris bubbanov likes this.

  6. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada

    Wow!!! I'm somewhat embarrassed to admit that I'm only hearing this song for the very first time. I've been listening to Neil for a lot of years, over 30, but I never did pick this "On The Beach" Album up. It's pretty amazing when you hear a great Neil tune for the first time....especially an older one. It sort of reaffirms why you started digging his stuff in the first place. Man...what a great tune this is!!! Thanks for sharing this

  7. pondcaster

    pondcaster Poster Extraordinaire

    Nov 29, 2010
    Tryon, NC
    Everybody Knows
    Rust Never Sleeps / Live Rust
    Ragged Glory
    unclefred likes this.

  8. El Chivo

    El Chivo Tele-Meister

    Mar 27, 2015
    Los Angeles-ish
    I did. :) It's funny that people kinda see an album done with someone like Lanois or Rick Rubin as that artist's "definitive album." I certainly looked forward to a Neil Young album with Lanois, especially after Emmylou Harris' amazing Wrecking Ball. I would have never guessed that the outcome would be Le Noise. Such a weird album, but sonically incredible.
    insanitizer likes this.

  9. beyer160

    beyer160 Tele-Afflicted

    Aug 11, 2010
    On Location
    I think it's pretty much flawless from start to finish- nearly every song on it is one of my all-time favorites in his catalog.

    Ah, maybe that explains it.

  10. jdm61

    jdm61 Tele-Holic

    Jan 6, 2010
    St. Petersburg, FL
    I must be getting old. Ten years ago, i would have said turnout the hell up and buy Live Rust, Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, etc. Now, i say that if you want 5, then buy After the Gold Rush.......and four others, Live at Massey Hall maybe being one of them. I guess I have been trying to simplify my life. ;)

  11. jdm61

    jdm61 Tele-Holic

    Jan 6, 2010
    St. Petersburg, FL
    And even if you only like the three best known songs, they make up 60% of the record. :)
    beyer160 likes this.

  12. Mahnmut26

    Mahnmut26 Tele-Meister

    Mar 10, 2016
    I also kinda regret not finding room on the honorable mentions for Born to Rock, a live album of performances from the USA tour 1986. Had to let it slip down the list 'cause of the tunes from Trans that he does there. I like Trans in theory, and it's a noble idea, but frankly it's not much to listen to.

    I have Born to Rock on vinyl, and it took some determination to fit it into my suitcase and bring it home from L.A., but I'm glad I did cuz I'm a real audiophile and I think part of my love for this record is the awesome sound quality, having been listening to it on vinyl.

  13. unclefred

    unclefred Tele-Meister

    Feb 17, 2014
    That's my list too. It's hard to pick just five. Some of his best songs are on othrr albums. Almost every album has 2 or 3 really nice tunes.

    If you haven't, check out the youtube of his bootleg from 1984, Catalytic Reaction. It has some rockin versions of tunes that he later put on dismal albums like Landing on Water. Touch the Sky being one that was crap on that record but Crazy Horse rocked it at the show.

  14. roknfnrol

    roknfnrol Tele-Meister

    Nov 16, 2004
    Louisville, KY
    American stars and bars
    After the gold rush

  15. jiri_c

    jiri_c TDPRI Member

    Dec 1, 2013
    Prague. Old World
    1. Tonight's The Night
    2. Zuma
    3. On The Beach
    4. Harvest Moon (yep!)
    5. Ragged Glory

  16. Alpino_321

    Alpino_321 Tele-Meister

    Sep 5, 2007
    Aviano, Italy
    Ragged Glory
    Mirror Ball
    Live Rust
    Harvest Moon

  17. MDent77

    MDent77 Tele-Holic

    Jun 13, 2016
    New England
    Neil Young Harvest
    Neil Young Rust never sleeps
    Neil Young After the Gold Rush
    Neil Young Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
    CSNY 4 Way Street (would have never been what he is without the CSNY start).

  18. HWTele

    HWTele Tele-Meister

    Oct 21, 2015
    image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg

    When is he gonna reissue Harvest Moon on vinyl? Love that album.

    Honorable mention:
    Dreamin' Man '92 Live
    Live at Massey Hall
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2016

  19. Vibro Chimp

    Vibro Chimp TDPRI Member

    Jul 22, 2016
    Upper Left USA
    All of my fave Neil Young albums are from his mid-70's period, starting with Time Fades Away and ending at Rust Never Sleeps. Can't wait for Archives II to be released...
    MDent77 likes this.

  20. Stingfan73

    Stingfan73 Tele-Afflicted

    May 9, 2012
    The East Coast
    Deja Vu- CSN&Y
    ALL the Buffalo Springfield albums.
    (All of Neil's contributions to all of these are great)
    Jim W likes this.

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