NEIL YOUNG – ” World Record “

Posted: November 15, 2022 in MUSIC

Neil Young with Crazy Horse returns with a double album entitled “World Record”. It is the follow-up to last year’s acclaimed “Barn” record. The first single “Love Earth” is taken from the upcoming new studio album from Neil Young with Crazy Horse ‘World Record’ produced by Rick Rubin and Neil Young released on 18/11/22

Neil Young is a man of many guises, but one that’s stuck with him since almost the start of his career has been of the environment-loving hippie. Way back in 1970 he sang, “Look at Mother Nature on the run in the 1970s,” predicting a decade of climate turmoil that’s only gotten worse since then. His commitment to the planet and its natural habitats hasn’t wavered, as he tackled issues big and small on albums like “Ragged Glory”, “Greendale” and “The Monsanto Years” over the past five decades.

He’s been on a pandemic-era roll lately, recording three albums in succession with his longtime, off-and-on backing group Crazy Horse. (He’s also been busy cleaning out his archives, dusting off nearly a dozen abandoned studio and concert projects in the same period.) “World Record” brings together environmental issues, Crazy Horse and another quickly assembled album (i.e., recorded live with no overdubs) that sounds like an extension of both the past few years and Young’s entire career.

Like 2019’s “Colorado” (which was recorded and released in the months before COVID, but which now seems to be the launching point of Young’s latest period) and 2021’s “Barn”, “World Record” can be messy and often unfocused. But Young and Crazy Horse’s allegiance to the material and themselves leads them to do what they’ve always done best: plugging in, following the leader and having a blast for 45 or so minutes.

“World Record” doesn’t go too deep. The opening lines of the album sum up its central message: “Love Earth, such an easy thing to do.” Other times, Young declares “You’re not alone on this old planet” (“This Old Planet [Changing Days”) and “No more war, only love” (“Walkin’ on the Road [To the Future“).” They’re simple messages, delivered in an unfussy manner by Young, Nils Lofgren, Ralph Molina and Billy Talbot. Producer Rick Rubin rarely gets in their way, though his voice is heard at the start of some songs during setup. Like its past couple of predecessors, “World Record” is a combination of laid-back acoustic songs and electric numbers, though only the 15-minute “Chevrolet” allows the quartet to truly stretch out like the old days.

The album is more single-minded than “Colorado” and “Barn”, with the love songs reserved for the planet this time. It’s also a looser record: Everyone seems to be feeling their way through the opening “Love Earth” before they settle on something resembling a groove, and “The World (Is in Trouble Now)” adds a wobbly pump organ to the usual Crazy Horse mix. There’s casual simplicity to Young’s vocals (also wobbly at times) that befits the overall tone of the project. Despite the subject matter, there’s little urgency to the songs or performances. The way Young sees it, everyone should already know what’s on the line. He’s just doing his part to spread the same message he’s been advocating for the past 50-plus years.

10 New Songs Of Our Times, Produced by Rick Rubin and Neil Young.

As Young himself said in a message on the Times-Contrarian during the making of World Record: “Real magic lasts and we think we have it.” Recorded live to capture the Crazy Horse’s long-running spirit, the album was mixed to analog tape at Shangri-La Studio.

To optimize audio quality, the vinyl format of “World Record” will be released as a three-sided double album with an etching on side four. There will also be a limited-edition version of the album pressed on clear vinyl available at The Greedy Hand Store. The upcoming album “World Record” available 11/18/2022.

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