Neil Young - Mixed Reviews For Neil Young's 'Americana'
Neil Young has released his latest album with Crazy Horse, to a mixture of reverence and ambivalence. 'Americana' is the first album that Young has released with Crazy Horse in nine years and whilst New York Daily News have given the album four stars out of five, over in the UK, The Guardian review places the album firmly in middle ground, with three. The album is a collection of American standards, such as 'Oh Susannah' and 'This Land Is Your Land,' with the veteran rocker joking to Reuters that his criteria for selecting the material for the album was "we just had to be able to play 'em."
Writing for The Guardian, Michael Hann draws comparisons between this latest venture from Crazy Horse and a pub rock band, questioning Young's claims that their version of 'Oh Susannah' as 'funky. "His version resembles nothing so much as a pub band playing Shocking Blue's Venus with different lyrics," writes Hann. His conclusion is that the album is "almost impossibly pointless," and leaves the feeling that Young may have fared better with a collection of original material. New York Daily News' Jim Farber was more impressed with Young's interpretations of the songs often sung in elementary schools and round campfires, revealing that they "rage with the proto-grungy distortions of psychedelic rock, the kind patented by Young's late-'60s band Crazy Horse".
Elsewhere, Slate magazine are ambivalent towards the quality of the album, noting that it sounds "oddly apolitical." The Independent hop down on the negative side of the fence, describing the album as "cursory, lumpen and dull," awarding it just two stars.