One great song, a few decent ones, but not a good Neil Young
Grigory's Girl | NYC | 11/03/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I do like some of this album, but most of it feel forced and many of its cuts are way overproduced. Neil has done material with a country tinge to it before, and has done it very well, but when he tries to do a "real" country album, he overdoes it. It's a shame, because the idea of Neil Young doing a country album sounds great on paper.
The song The Wayward Wind, a country music classic covered by just about everyone, is butchered under one of the most overbearing string sections ever. A more subtle approach would have worked so much better. The song Are There Any More Real Cowboys? ventures into self parody, coming across as someone who understands nothing about cowboys. Misfits has some of the silliest lyrics ever in any of Neil's work. The only song that I absolutely adore is Once An Angel, an absolutely beautiful ballad with a sweet production and a moving, sincere vocal by Neil. It's one of my favorite Neil Young songs.
This album is actually one of the better albums from the 80's Neil's Geffen period. As Neil fans know, Geffen sued Young during this time because he felt Neil was purposely doing subpar work to get out of his contract. While that point is debatable, this is one of the few 80's albums that Neil is trying to do something good. He just doesn't succeed fully. It's worth a listen or two, but the only song worth hanging onto is Once An Angel. Old Ways is a noble failure."
Hardcore Country - Good Stuff
S. Olszewski | San Francisco | 02/04/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Neil finally goes all the way, putting out a full-on, hardcore country album. Fantastic stuff, with Waylon and Willie adding to the mix, along with all the studio musicians in Nashville, seemingly. This album didn't do much when it came out, oddly. I can only imagine that it had to do with both the lawsuits surrounding this release (Geffen wanted something more commercial), and the fact that while most Neil fans like his countrified folk/pop stuff, they just don't like the real deal. Pity. I own all of Neil's albums, and this one always floats around near the top of the pile."
Neil Young's Best Album Yet!
R. J Metz | Blacksburg, VA | 05/01/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I received a copy of "Old Ways," for Christmas during my Neil Young phase, when I was a teenager. And in my move out of my parents' house I sadly lost it. Fortunately, several years ago, I was able to buy a replacement copy. And I have it on my iPod. It has some GREAT numbers on it. A lot of the songs are ones that Neil Young wrote, but there are also ones that are classics. For example, everybody knows "The Wayward Wind." And "Any More Real Cowboys," is also pretty popular. "My Boy," makes me cry every time I hear that cut.
If all you care about it Neil Young's rock music, this may not be the right choice for you. However, if you are a big fan of Neil Young, period. Then by all means buy yourself a copy of this first rate CD. You'll be glad you did!"