Album: Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Americana (Reprise)


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The Independent Culture

A collection of mostly folk standards that he might have sung in his Winnipeg youth, Neil Young's Americana applies grungy riffs and rolling-thunder drums to murder ballads and singalongs like "Clementine" and "This Land Is Your Land", stripping "Tom Dula" of Kingston Trio bonhomie, and replacing the jollity of "Oh Susannah" with an air of brooding menace.

Though drab and overlong, it has a certain rugged, whiskery charm, which doesn't extend to the concluding "God Save the Queen", a stodge too far.

Download: Wayfarin' Stranger; Clementine; Gallows Pole