Posts Tagged ‘Chrome Dreams’

When you’ve got 28 studio albums under your belt – as Neil Young did when he released Chrome Dreams II ten years ago today – you’ve no doubt got a few leftover songs, and the Reprise collection kicks off with three great ones, most notably the 18-plus minute epic “Ordinary People.” And though Young is working here with longtime collaborators including guitarist, keyboardist, and steel guitar extraordinaire Ben Keith, bassist Rick Rosas and Crazy Horse drummer Ralph Molina, The crossing of his two primary rhythm sections is interesting. Crazy Horse fans may miss bassist Billy Talbot, and Horse detractors will long for drummer Chad Cromwell, but the trio has noticeable chemistry, and it is hard to argue with the results. Young himself of course contributes mightily on a multitude of instruments.

This isn’t just a journey through the past; the singer-songwriter also penned strong new material in a variety of styles ranging from country-folk (“Ever After”) to gospel (“Shining Light”) to electric rockers (the Grammy-nominated “No Hidden Path”) is probably the heaviest song, crunchy fuzzed out guitar solo’s are abundant.

While its title references a legendary unreleased album from 1977, All this matters little since Young of course no longer has anything to prove, meaning fans can enjoy the album and others will still not know what they miss. Since the masterwork and two of the better cuts (“Beautiful Bluebird” and “Boxcar”) were written between 20 and 30 years ago,

Chrome Dreams II doesn’t have a stylistic or thematic focus, and that’s kind of the point; it’s an album that revels in driving all over the map.