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on 26 March 2004
Taken from the 80's Geffen period, this Country album originally displeased the record company,(Geffen wanted "Harvest 2", or at least its record sales), but to any puritan fan it stands out from the crowd. This cd, co-produced with longtime colleagues and friends, top pedal steel player Ben Keith, Elliot Mazer and regular cohort David Briggs, shows Neil's true fondness of Country and ability to write great country songs. With appearances from such greats as, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson. The first track,'Wayward Wind' has a true Country swirling string section, cutting fiddle part and Neil's 'storytelling' lyrics, alongside female backing vocals. The second track 'Get back to the country' is even better, (one that would sound great live). While many of his albums include what you could call "Country Songs" it is only when you hear a full Neil Young Country album that you appreciate how good he is at his craft. Being able to switch from gritty / distorted road rock with Crazy Horse, to honest, touching albums like, 'Comes A Time'. Although this album may not appeal to all Neil Young fans, i say that if you enjoy both sides of Neil Young's music, from 'Ragged Glory' to 'Hawks And Doves', then you should definitely add this to your collection.
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on 11 November 2001
Probably Neil Young's best album of the 1980s, "Old Ways" is the most straightforward country album he has recorded. Opening with a cover of "The Wayward Wind" sets out Young's defiant manifesto: this is country, not rock. However, he can't keep his trademark weirdness from creeping in on songs like "Misfits," where the action takes place in outer space, or the title track itself. The presence of Waylon Jennings on some tracks only adds to the authentic country feel of this album, and it has to be said that this far outstrips the more well-known "Comes a Time" album of 1978. An overlooked gem.
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It is a pity that Neil had upset so many people in the American south with some of his early songs – listen to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Sweet home Alabama – because he showed with this album that he could record traditional country as good as anybody. Perhaps it was because of those early songs that this album did not achieve the level of success that I had hoped it would.
The album begins with an outstanding duet version of Wayward wind. It features a lady called Denise Draper who is otherwise unknown to me, but sounds a bit like Dolly. Upon first hearing this track, I looked for an album by her but could not find one, so she remains an obscure mystery.
Next come Get back to the country, the first of four tracks featuring Waylon Jennings and Are there any more real cowboys, a duet with Willie Nelson. The fourth track, Once an angel, features a chorus of background singers including Gail Davies.
The remaining tracks are mostly solo, though Waylon can be clearly heard on three of them. Of those, Bound for glory, a classic road song, is a true duet. The others are essentially Neil solos with Waylon contributing here and there. California sunset doesn’t feature Waylon but it is a great, upbeat fiddle song.
The whole album is uplifting in mood and features plenty of steel and other traditional country instruments. I don’t play it as often as I once did but it remains one of my all-time favorites.
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on 9 March 2012
This is probably Neil Young's most Country album and overall, if you ignore one song, it's a decent if uneven album. There are a couple of very good, but not great tracks, "Get Back To The Country" and "Are There Any More real Cowboys?". Most of the other tracks are average.

Unfortunately it has that turkey, "Misfits" on it, which sounds like Neil Young decided to do a Bob Dylan style stream of conciousness song and that it needed to be a country one. I'm hoping it's meant to be a parody, but it still stinks.
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on 20 November 2008
... if you like "Comes a Time" and "This Note's for You" and are not upset by a rather glossy but faultless country production. For me this holds true and this album will probably get it's due amount of spinning in my player. Yep, Neil may have though that country music is a bit shallow and his songs about his wife being an angel, his son growing up to fast, or California being such a beautiful home state to him really don't go on great emotional explorations. But you'll wish he would have teamed up more with Waylon Jennings so brilliantly do their voices match. Clearly recommended. But with the bar raised so high elsewhere in his career, giving 5 stars here would be inflationary. It's definitely much better than American Stars and Bars, arguably minus the hurricane.
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on 14 March 2013
A very neglected album, certainly his best of the 1980's whilst on the Geffen label. Some famous country names guest: Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson with a fantastic band comprising Marty Stuart, Spooner Oldham, Tim Drummond, Rufus Thibodeaux, Be Keith and Hargus 'Pig' Robbins to name just a few. Songs are pretty specal too especially Get Back To The Country, Once An Angel and Bound For Glory.
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on 17 December 2010
This is classic Neil Young at his most honest and folky. In years to come when people ask what is American music, the easy answer will be "Neil Young". The man can do no wrong. It's as interesting as Zuma.
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on 10 July 2013
Neil Young singing country music, Just great. Would recommend this album to fans of that genre. Don't know about Neil Young fans though. Well I think Neil Young is great, so is this album.
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on 30 January 2013
Those expecting a sequel of Harvest have been left completely puzzled out here....but I like Old Ways the collaborations with all the country stars make it a great record....there are some great compositions too and Neil `s voice is at its finest in my opinion...you might dislike the Country mainstream pop production here but that`s what makes this record different from previous country -like Young...all and all he did a Commercial Country Music record that`s probably one of the finest the whole country music industry as ever produced......PS backed by some great musicians!
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on 12 June 2013
Great country music from Neil, absolute worth buying, and a must have for all country music lovers. You will not regret.
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