It is appropriate that Neil Young’s latest album (released on September 28) is called Le Noise. It might as well have been called Le Sound. When producer Daniel Lanois (who’s worked with names such as Bob Dylan and U2) and Young stepped into the studio to make the record, both men wanted to create a “new sound”. So Lanois handed over an electro-acoustic guitar to Young and hooked up the bass strings to one amplifier and the treble ones to another. As Lanois describes it, the electro-acoustic guitar had it all: bass, electronic and acoustic sounds. And, if you listen to it—I caught the album in its entirety as a pre-launch webstream—you can see how Young is obviously enjoying it.
The best supergroups—collaborations between already famous musicians—are often the ones that don’t last too long. Remember Blind Faith, which in the 1960s had heavyweights such as Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker, Steve Winwood and Ric Grech yet released just the one eponymous album? Or, what about The Traveling Wilburys, comprising Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty, who recorded just two albums? Read more
I came back from a break of a couple of weeks and turned on the Internet taps to be hit by a deluge. New music and news about music just gushed out like a dam had broken and, what’s more, much of it was great stuff. Most of it was by contemporary musicians but there was also some from older musicians as well. Like the news about the recently launched first volume of a box set that digs deep into Neil Young’s archives. Read more
Forty-one years ago, on this very day—April 26—Stephen Stills was at a recording session for his then girlfriend, singer Judy Collins. Stills and Collins, as is well known, had an on-and-off relationship during the 1960s, with Stills having played back-up guitar on at least one of Collins’ albums (1968’s Who Knows Where The Time Goes). Read more