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Landing On Water Import

3 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, March 21, 2006
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 21, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: INgrooves Fontana/UMe Imports
  • ASIN: B000000OY9
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,937 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
How can you not like this album? This is experimental Neil at his best, trying to tackle something new and infuse it with his own Neilness.
So, you think of the 80s, and you think of synthesizers. New Wave? Synth pop?
Neil puts together this album that is largely synthesizer-driven. Actually, that's not true. This album is primarily driven by Steve Jordan's drums, mic'd in such a way that it sounds like you're in a closet with them. Keyboards are layered on top of the drums, and last... BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST... Neil's trademark tortured distorted guitar periodically cuts through and slaps you senseless.
This album has a LOT of charm to it.
Lyrically:
"Take my advice, don't listen to me..."
"The wooden ships were just a hippie dream..."
An angelic-voiced boys choir singing "Got to fight to control the violent side..."
Samples & sound effects:
Breaking glass as percussion.
Screams punctuating that song "Pressure".
...and DAMN I don't know what they did to those drums throughout the album to make 'em sound so in-your-face, but... DAMN...
DAMN.
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Format: Audio CD
You know, it blows my mind that such seminal Young albums such as On The Beach and Time Fades Away are unavailable while the likes of Old Ways and this are still out there...
But don't get me wrong, I really do like this album. In fact, I like it a lot; I think it's the best thing Neil did during his "difficult" years on Geffen. When I first heard LoW, I hated it. Flat out hated it. I was still jonesing for the Neil Young of the Seventies and this certainly did not fit the bill. But y'know, the songs themselves were so strong that I eventually began to play it more and more, beginning with Hippie Dream, one of Neil's best in any decade, on through the shuffling People on the Street, Touch The Night with its choirish BV's, I Got A Problem (rocking and funky, with great guitar), and even the Devo-ish Pressure. This album comes across in a lot of ways like an attempt to revisit Trans, and in my opinion LoW works much better. After my initial reservations, I came to like Young's enhanced electric guitar and Steve Jordan's flat-sounding electronic drums (I mean sometimes they sound like a flat rubber stick on a wood block!) As the years have gone by, I still play Zuma or On The Beach or Tonight's The Night when I get in the mood for some Neil, but once in a while, when I least expect it, I get an urge to pull this one out and give it a spin. I always enjoy it, and I think you will, too, with an open mind.
1 Comment 18 of 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Certainly one of Neil's best recordings, mainly because it's something only Neil could get away with. All the boring old hippy farts who fell in love with him after Harvest will poo-poo this one, but anyone with a brain and a love for experimentation will immediately see its charms.
You have to wonder how he gets the inspiration for this stuff, though. Neil: "I think I'm gonna do a song about havin' a bad news beat, 'cause I got an eye in the sky, right Kootch? Heh, heh, heh. And touchin' the night and stuff."
It's hard to pick a stand-out here. Most will tell you it's "Hippie Dream," but "Bad News Beat" is fantastic, "Violent Side" is prime Neil screaming, "Pressure" is great fun, and whoever played that bass lick to "Hard Luck Stories" is a genius.
To those who think I'm being tongue-in-cheek, think again. This is a top ten Neil album for me, and it rarely ever leaves my car stereo. And to those who are still annoyed by this album, ha, you fell right into Neil's trap.
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Format: Audio CD
Of all the 60s legends who took baffling artistic detours through the decade Kris Kristofferson described as "shipwrecked"--Dylan and the Stones come especially to mind--Neil Young's was by far the most fascinating. After responding to the epic success of the "Rust" albums with characteristically unpredictable forays into inaccessible pseudo-punk (Reactor) and rickety folk meanderings (Hawks & Doves), Neil Young journeyed to places few of his fans were willing to go: the electronica dance beats of "Trans" which, we later learned, featured electronically distorted vocals that emerged from attempts at communicating through a computer with his son Ben, a quadriplegic suffering from cerebral palsy.

In retrospect, the 80s are as legendary a period in Neil Young's career as his 70s heyday--not because the music was great, but precisely because it wasn't, culminating in the now-infamous lawsuit filed against Young by David Geffen for making music that didn't sound Neil young enough. Many like to call "Landing on Water" Neil's worst album, but that distinction--if we really must make it--belongs to the morbidly produced "Everybody's Rockin'". While Springsteen and Joel seemed to discover new voices with 50s nostalgia pieces like "Pink Cadillac" and "Uptown Girl" around the same time, Neil's flirtation with similar curiosities reflected, if anything, a voice that had become all but irretrievable.

It could hardly have been a surprise, then, that "Landing on Water" further exemplified the erratic artistic indulgences Young was favoring at the time, with its characteristically grungy licks and riffs laid over a jarring and misguided cacophony of synthesized drums and rhythms.
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