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Monday, August 02, 2004

ON THE BEACH

Fred blogged the song (avc.blogs.com), but I want to talk about the record. I listened to it on the way to the beach this weekend, and was yet again humbled by the experience. Released in 1974 after a long period of depression and doubt fuelled by the deaths of two close friends (I hit the city and I lost my band...), Neil emerged with a record of stark vision. Only one song, the lead off "Walk On" could be in any way referred to as upbeat, the album treads murky water, but with bright reflective brilliance. "See The Sky About To Rain" may be the musical equivalent to the cup being half empty, but it is simply one of his best songs from any period. The production value has no equal among peers, and still stands up in today's "in your face" digital production era. Throughout the record one feels as if they are in the room with Neil and friends as they imperfectly pluck and strum their way through Neil's tapestry of self doubt and self pity. No, it's not a happy record. It's a real record, and "sooner or later, it all get's real...Walk On..."

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