Found in Cyber Space
Superb Sound Quality
These live recordings of Neil Young & Crazy Horse may be old news in trader’s circles, but… they never get old. Here are some of the raw rehearsals leading up to the recording of Ragged Glory, taped at Neil’s Broken Arrow Ranch in the summer of 1990.
Great sound quality, with a few false starts mixed in and the group’s ringing guitars lingering in the fade outs. Some actually prefer a few of these takes to the official versions, but that’s hardly worth debating. If you want to know what it’s like to hang with Neil and the boys at the ranch, this is what you need.
Ragged Glory (Recorded in April 1990 at Plywood Digital, Woodside, CA (except "Mother Earth": The Hoosier Dome) is the nineteenth studio album by Canadian musician Neil Young, his sixth with Crazy Horse, released on September 9, 1990. It was voted album of the year in the annual Pazz & Jop critics' poll and in 2010 was selected by Rolling Stone as the 77th best album of the 1990s.
The album revisits the hard-rock style previously explored on Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere and Zuma. The first two tracks are songs Young and Crazy Horse originally wrote and performed live in the 1970s with "Country Home" notably being performed on their 1976 tour.
"Farmer John" is a cover of a 60s song, written and performed by R&B duo Don and Dewey and also performed by garage band The Premiers. Young revealed that the song "Days that Used to Be" is inspired by Bob Dylan's "My Back Pages". The album features many extended guitar jams, with two songs stretching out to more than ten minutes.
The album was very well received by critics with Kurt Loder in Rolling Stone raving that it was "a monument to the spirit of the garage - to the pursuit of passion over precision" and calling it "a great one". The CD single culled from the album, "Mansion on the Hill", included the otherwise unreleased song "Don't Spook the Horse" (7:36).
"F*!#in' Up" (pronounced "Fuckin' Up") is frequently covered by Pearl Jam live and was performed by Bush in their headlining set at Woodstock 1999. Toronto-based band Constantines recorded a version of "F*!#in' Up" in Winnipeg, which surfaced as the b-side to their "Our Age" 7" in November 2008.
Scottish heavy metal band The Almighty recorded the song and included it as a B-side (with an uncensored title) to their "Out of Season" single in 1992. An outtake from the sessions for the album, "Interstate," was released on the vinyl version of the 1996 album Broken Arrow and on the CD single for the track "Big Time."
Having re-established his reputation with the musically varied, lyrically enraged Freedom, Neil Young returned to being the lead guitarist of Crazy Horse for the musically homogenous, lyrically hopeful Ragged Glory. The album's dominant sound was made by Young's noisy guitar, which bordered on and sometimes slipped over into distortion, while Crazy Horse kept up the songs' bright tempos.
Despite the volume, the tunes were catchy, with strong melodies and good choruses, and they were given over to love, humor, and warm reminiscence. They were also platforms for often extended guitar excursions: "Love to Burn" and "Love and Only Love" ran over ten minutes each, and the album as a whole lasted nearly 63 minutes with only ten songs.
Much about the record had a retrospective feel -- the first two tracks, "Country Home" and "White Line," were newly recorded versions of songs Young had played with Crazy Horse but never released in the '70s; "Mansion on the Hill," the album's most accessible track, celebrated a place where "psychedelic music fills the air" and "peace and love live there still";
there was a cover of the Premiers' garage rock oldie "Farmer John"; and "Days That Used to Be," in addition to its backward-looking theme, borrowed the melody from Bob Dylan's "My Back Pages" (by way of the Byrds' arrangement), while "Mother Earth (Natural Anthem)" was the folk standard "The Water Is Wide" with new, environmentally aware lyrics. Young was not generally known as an artist who evoked the past this much, but if he could extend his creative rebirth with music this exhilarating, no one was likely to complain.
Neil Young & Crazy Horse - The Ranch Rehearsals. Recorded at Broken Arrow Ranch June thru July, 1990
♫♪ Neil Young - guitar, vocals
♫♪ Frank Sampedro - guitar, vocals
♫♪ Billy Talbot - bass guitar, vocals
♫♪ Ralph Molina - drums, vocals
01. Mansion On The Hill - 09.02
02. White Line (1) - 03.37
03. White Line (2) - 00.59
04. Love To Burn (1) - 03.40
05. Love To Burn (false start) - 00.18
06. Love To Burn (2) - 09.50
07. The Days That Used To Be - 04.47
08. Love And Only Love - 09.56
Bonus Tracks (the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium April 1, 1990)
09. Everything's Broken - 04.15
10. Pocahontas - 04.07
11. Crime In The City - 07.39
12. After The Gold Rush - 04.20
13. The Needle And The Damage Done - 02.09
14. No More - 04.54