r&r diary – Played the Be-Jesus Out of “Ragged Glory” – 12.5.12

ragged gloryI played the absolute be-jesus out of my of Neil Young & Crazy Horse 1990 CD “Ragged Glory.” The CD just gave up the ghost, and I had to buy another copy. I’ve been blasting it out at maximum volume ever since. It sounds brand new. It’s freaking glorious. Neil and the boys are in peak form. There’s a looseness, an exuberance, a big, bold, confidence in the music that has rarely been matched. There’s just something about Neil’s mournful voice, his old Les Paul cranked through a vintage Fender Amp, and Crazy Horse stomping around like a pack of wild horses hopped up on the juice. Sometimes the guitars leap out of the speakers and try to knock you upside the head. The record was produced by David Briggs. All the really great Neil Young records (Zuma, On the Beach, Tonight’s the Night, Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, Rust Never Sleeps, Live Rust, Weld) were produced by Briggs. And there was some kind of special secret mojo at work when Briggs, Young and Crazy Horse got together on a project. Briggs is gone, the work stands. When the record ends, guitars still ringing in your ears, you’re left with one question; it hangs over the proceedings like a black cloud, it’s also a prophecy, and some kind of infernal anthem: “Why do I keep fucking up?” Why? – Jammer

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