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For those whose tastes match my own, _Harvest_ is likely to rank as a favorite among Young's many albums. (And longtime listeners will recall that at one time Young had planned a follow-up to _Harvest_ to be entitled _Homegrown_. Two cuts intended for this album -- "Star of Bethlehem" and "The Deep Forbidden Lake" -- appeared on _Decade_.)
_Harvest Moon_ is a conscious attempt to recall, celebrate, and go beyond that earlier album, and it reassembles all of the key personnel: the beloved Stray Gators, Linda Ronstadt, James Taylor, even arranger Jack Nitzche. (Even one or two songs from the old LP are deliberately invoked: "You and Me," a spare and lovely duet with the late and sorely missed Nicolette Larson, makes explicit reference to "Old Man.")
But Young didn't exactly stand still during the two decades between the two releases. _Harvest Moon_ is a much more mature and satisfying collection -- better written, better performed, better produced. Young's lyrics are wistfully evocative; his voice and guitar are clear, solid, and strong.
I could carry on at length about my favorites ("Unknown Legend," "War of Man," and "You and Me,") but I won't try to describe them. I'll just say that anyone who loved _Harvest_ will probably love this one even more.
P.S.- Nov. 2007: I just wanted to comment on a couple of people who said this album was too slick and overproduced. I just don't see it. One person commented on how the harmonies seemed too obviously overdubbed. First of all, I don't think it's uncommon for harmonies to be overdubbed. That's really only apparent on "One of These Days"- I know what he's talking about. It was an intended effect- and it worked. Superbly.
The other is a gentle, introspective and philosophical poet.
This album is probably the latters masterpiece.
Sure, the name was obviously used as a way of enticing old fans of the massivly successful "Harvest" into buying this, but "Harvest Moon" is no cheap rip-off sequel. Instead, we have a charming collection of accousticly flavoured songs that you find yourself singing along to.
These are songs about times past, old friends lost, past glories and the dreams of youth. These are melancholy testaments to days gone by, and there's a quiet sadness flowing throughout the album. Fear of getting old? Memories of the past getting you down? Sure, it's here. But also a certain careful optimism about the future.
More than a collection of songs, this is also a poetic masterpiece and a modern American classic. One you really ought to have in your collection.
When I got "Harvest Moon", I listened to it three times in a row, without pause.
The album is... simply beautiful. It sets a mood from the opening notes, and continues it for the next fifty minutes. Very rarely do an album's lyrical and musical content harmonize so well. Topics include weariness, lost loves, fond memories, old friends, times gone by.
This was THE album that got me into Neil Young. If you've heard and liked any one song off of "Harvest Moon", you won't be disappointed by the rest of the album.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This album is the twin sister of Harvest. Just a little more mature and musically wise. His other albums sometimes seem experimental, but Harvest Moon is exceptionally listenable. Read morePublished 9 hours ago by MiddleSister
I've wanted to buy this album for years but never got around to it until now. Love it.Published 3 days ago by Jellico25
Gift for someone who thought it was the Neil Youngs best ones ever.Published 3 days ago by ShopN4Me12
My second favorite Neil Young album since 'After the Gold Rush". It's really great, a great showcase for his talent and ability.Published 4 days ago by Scott FS
My wife & I saw a great video of the song Harvest Moon and she loved the song so we bought the CD.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
There's so many Neil albums but this ranks among the best. Right next to harvest and after the gold rush. Beautiful music and harmony. Read morePublished 1 month ago by isaac lopez
Love it, love it & gave one to a friend.. He will be here in the desert for a concert in October!! Go Harvest Moon in October!!!Published 1 month ago by Patricia Deluca