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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Speakin` out
I`ve heard this shambolically tight rock masterpiece sober, drunk, and most points inbetween. I`ve heard it on LP, on CD, and on the advice of a very alternative therapist. I`ve heard it when in the mood and not in the mood. I`ve listened to it happy, sad, strung out, depressed, overjoyed, tired, lit up, lovelorn and loved-up.
It`s one of the greatest rock albums...
Published on 9 Nov 2011 by GlynLuke

versus
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 2 be honest i think some of it was good, but i woull`nt swear to
i car`nt remember, 2 be honest i think some of it was good , but i woull`nt swear to it
Published 1 month ago by edith margery bradbury


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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Speakin` out, 9 Nov 2011
By 
GlynLuke (York UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
I`ve heard this shambolically tight rock masterpiece sober, drunk, and most points inbetween. I`ve heard it on LP, on CD, and on the advice of a very alternative therapist. I`ve heard it when in the mood and not in the mood. I`ve listened to it happy, sad, strung out, depressed, overjoyed, tired, lit up, lovelorn and loved-up.
It`s one of the greatest rock albums ever made, of that I am in no doubt. I`ll bet Dylan (who`s fond of NY) loved it to death.
I`m playing it, for the umpteenth time, as I write, and it sounds like all the rock albums ever made rolled into one. It certainly `contains` Harvest, Goldrush, Time Fades Away and On The Beach in its sometimes tenuous embrace.
There isn`t a dud track, nothing that should embarrass or frighten any horses, plenty of raw soulfulness, a spontaneous feel to most of it, little piano trills where you least expect them, the fiery catchy Downtown in the middle of a lot of troubled angst, and the whole thing sounds like it`s been around since the dawn of time - Greil Marcus`s `old weird America` come to call with an insistent urgency that won`t be denied.
Neil plays plenty of his trademark intense spidery guitar, he has a tremendous band with him - including the wonderful Nils Lofgren (a too-often unsung hero of thoughtful American soul-rock) on guitar & piano.
I wouldn`t be so crazy as to single out particular songs. This is one record that lives in the world as an entity, one track seeming to segue into the next. For example, when the unhurried Speakin` Out goes right into the relatively jaunty World On A String, it all feels just right! After the welcome rough magic of Downtown, the downhome ramblings of Mellow My Mind are exactly what the sawbones ordered.
These classic rock albums from the 60s & 70s - Astral Weeks, Forever Changes, Five Leaves Left, Happy Sad, Blonde On Blonde, The Band, Sailin` Shoes, Countdown To Ecstasy, Blue, Neil`s Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere - now have an aura of wonder about them that can never be dispelled.
A reluctant, pained masterpiece. Hear it if you haven`t. Hear it yet again if you have.
Staggering.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful and tender, yet raw and jagged, 22 Aug 2007
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
"Tonight's the Night" was one of the first few Neil Young albums I bought, almost 10 years ago. At the time I was well into his rock stuff - "Like a Hurricane", "Hey Hey My My" and the like - as well as his acoustic stuff... but this seemed to come from nowhere. On reading the sleeve notes, I was concerned by how little Neil actually plays guitar on the album. He seems to mostly play harp and piano. There's a fair bit of steel guitar too, which I wasn't too optimistic about.

It's difficult thinking back to that time now, since Neil was a big inspiration to me, and I knew a lot of his music, and a lot about him, but there's so much more I know now... I guess all this is leading up to me saying that despite how different this record sounded to the things I liked about Neil Young, I loved it all the more for it, and now it's just a natural and fitting part of the whole. It's a beautiful, tender, and yet raw and jagged album. It's dark, yet playful. The arrangements sooth, while the lyrics and the voices bristle with emotion.

When people who don't know much about Neil Young ask me to recommend an album... well, it's a difficult task because there's so much to consider - nevertheless, I always recommend this one as one of his best, though I know it's not musically representative of the man. And I know that some people who aren't used to this kind of roughness are going to be repelled. However, it is emotionally representative of him, and if a person can open up his mind enough, forget all the autotune of modern records, forget the slick production; he can love this record all the more for it's wailing, out of tune vocals and it's lumbering rhythms.

I'm sure most of you already know that when recording this album Neil and his band would stay up late drinking tequila and smoking weed, and then they would start playing these songs. And that's how they came to sound so perfectly imperfect. This record is a testament to Neil's methods, to his integrity, and to his ability to put his entire heart into his songwriting.

I've said it in a previous review, and I'll say it again: I don't know of any other artist who puts so much of themselves into their music, whose work is as personal as Neil Young's. That quality is was makes people feel Neil's music and what inspires so many guitar players and songwriters.

If you already like Neil Young, get this album and enrich your understanding of him, and your collection. If you're not familiar with him, this probably isn't the best place to start. Do be sure to come back here though; I can't imagine not owning this record - it's that important.

Oh, here's another story about this record: when Neil toured it, as you know, audiences weren't that impressed as he was playing this record all the way through, with none of his hits. I heard from one source that Neil said, "If you stay till the end, then I'll play some songs you've heard before". Then when he finished playing the album, he started from the beginning again. That's pretty funny. And it makes you wonder what you might have done if you had been there. Hopefully you would have stayed.

It's only one source that i heard that from, so I'm not sure if it's true. It probably happened one night. I also read that Neil was drinking a lot of tequila on stage, and some nights would play the title track 3 or 4 times.

Sorry; I've taken a tidy, succinct review and made it messy. I just thought you might like to hear a story if you didn't know it already.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars timeless, 17 Aug 2005
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
for me this is one of the greatest albums of the last 30 years, it has not dated one iota as many of the records of the time have. Tired Eyes is the most unearthly song about drugs ever written and every song has moments of sublime beauty. to those who bemoan the rough edges, you're missing the point.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring melancholy, 25 Feb 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
A truly 5 star album. There is so much depth and sadness - Tonight's The Night is really heart-moving. There is a sense that Young is in another world. It sounds like this album was recorded/created almost in a daze, and for me that's its real genius. Real feelings are timeless.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ragged Glory, 2 April 2009
By 
J. Jenkins (Dudley Port, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
After Harvest made him the toast of the then-burgeoning West Coast singer-songwriter movement, Neil Young made a typically bold about face for the follow up. Reconvening with his garage band Crazy Horse, Young traded Harvest's fragile, fingerpicked acoustics and dense orchestral arrangements for blasts of ragged electric guitar noise, time-keeping that could most generously be described as relaxed, and a rock and roll spirit that simply cannot be faked.

The tone here is bleak, although to my ears not as overpoweringly so as on the other two records in Young's supposed 'Ditch Trilogy' (On the Beach and Time Fades Away). Much of the sense of turmoil associated with the album is implicit in the circumstances of it's conception. Crazy Horse guitarist Danny Whitten and Young's friend and roadie Bruce Berry had both died of drug overdoses in the months before the songs were written. (Whitten appears on Come on Baby, Let's Go Downtown, recorded live in 1970.) This lends the numerous drug references, which might otherwise seem quite innocuous, a much more troubling aspect.

The album is roughly split between bracing bar room rockers like Lookout Joe, World On A String and the title track, and mellower, bluesy cuts like Speaking Out, Albuquerque, and appropriately enough, Mellow My Mind. Both are decidedly unpolished, with Young admitting that he and the band would drink heavily before they began recording.

Songs reel and stumble, and Young's voice cracks with emotion. In a moment of exemplary brazeness, Young admits to copping a melody from the Rolling Stones because he's "too wasted" to write his own. Yet almost in spite of itself the album holds together remarkably well, and the imperfections actually give the album much of it's distinctive identity. Here, at his most unguarded, Young reveals his genius in it's purest form.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Old times are good times!, 14 Oct 2011
By 
B. Andrews (west midlands) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
I was at a Neil Young gig in Bristol early seventies when he played this album in its entirity. The album had not even been released and Neil was coming off the back of big success with Harvest and After the Gold Rush and the whole CSNY thing.

The gig was so different to what was expected, gone was the sensitive mellow country singer looking for his heart of gold. This was rough and raw, dark sunglasses and leather. He got a lot of booing that night and if I recall his record company complained about the sub standard nature of the material on the album.

Having just bought this album again, it is an absolute classic and has some of his most memorable tracks and lyrics.

Not an album for people new to Mr Young, try one of his greatest hits compilations, but once you are into him get into this. I am playing it again some 40 years on and it is outstanding material.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An album to play when you're drunk, 6 July 2006
By 
demeni (Gloucestershire) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
It took me years to get this and it may require you're perseverence but whenever you're down and you reach for that bottle or three.... just put this album on and try to sing along without crying. It's impossible! That's what this is all about - EMOTION! An antidote to the computer controlled music of the noughties for sure. This is as close to the blues that you can get. Every song is raw and hewn from the sorrow and useless loss of life that Young was feeling at the time. But this also a celebration of life and a fitting remembrance of those who had passed away so young, cut short by drug abuse. 'Tonight's The Night' can be a wake every night if you want it, if you'll just 'Mellow your mind' and 'Roll another number (for the road)'
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A poignant reminder of how the needle effected Young!!, 7 July 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
This album ranks alongside "On The Beach","Zuma" and "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" as his best work. It is an album which is terribly dark in its execution it shows real feeling! Just as the listerner is getting over depressed by the amazing "Borrowed Tune" , where Young sounds at his most wasted,Young uplifts them with a poignant reminder of what this album is about, Danny Whitten and this is the pattern for the whole album. the eirie opener "Tonights the Night" sets the scene perfectly. "Mellow My Mind" is the highpoint of this album and the cracked vocals of Young just add to the pathos and who knows what the record company thought when he announced he would release this song in its raw state! Overall the album is amazing, and the CD sleeve adds more atmosphere with the name of Danny Whitten appearing on the photo but he is not there a final reminder of what the needle has done!
Breathtaking!!!!!!!!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The gospel according to the hardcore, 20 Oct 2009
By 
J. A. Harvey (Lincolnshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
Often the album most appreciated by hardcore Neil Young fans, this is the one that most embodies Neil's occasional ideal of recording in one take, regardless of how good the take is. This gives the listener a unique glimpse of the seedy underbelly, as one Amazon reviewer aptly described it, and for many it is a most agreeable sight. Personally I think he got the balance about right with 'After The Goldrush', the production was simple and unfussy, but everything was in place. Wheras this sounds like he's making the statement that this is a better way of doing things because it produces something more authentic. The recording and mixing of the album is given more than its fair share of coverage in Young's biography 'Shakey'; reading between the lines you can't help suspecting he secretly harboured doubts about the finished product.

Recorded in the aftermath of the tragic loss of two of his inner circle, Tonight is a depairing expression of grief, and Neil didn't try to wrap everything up in poetry as songwriters tend to do on such occasions. The explicit nature of the words on songs like the title track is a fitting tribute to Bruce Berry and Danny Whitten, as is 'Come On Baby Let's Go Downtown', on which Danny takes the lead vocal surprisingly well. Other than this, I don't know of any Neil Young solo album where a lead vocal has been sung by anyone other than Neil himself.

The songs themselves are a suprisingly expansive collection, from good old rock 'n' roll to the usual harmonica based country folk with a heavy dose of bleary eyed blues. 'Borrowed Tune' is a good example of the album's mood; famously lifted from the Rolling Stones song 'Lady Jane'. (why didn't they sue him? They usually sue their own grandmothers for singing a Stones song in the bath) I like this a whole lot more than the Stones' rather pouty 'version'. On the subject of the Jagger influence, it is vocally noticeable on the title track and others, but then this is all about stripping away the supposed pretentiousness of anything cultured. A questionable endevour, but I suppose if you dispense with the cultured style of a Rodgers or a Plant, you would be left with the lowest common denominator; Mick Jagger.

Despite my reservations I think it's an excellent record, although there are several Young albums I would put in front of it. The title track and 'Tired Eyes' are often cited as two of the better songs, but I prefer the more subtle tones of 'World On A String' and the previously mentioned 'Borrowed Tune', which is exceptionally good borrowed or not. 'New Mama', about the birth of his first child to wife Carrie, always gets stuck in my head for days after I've been listening to the album, and I also like 'Mellow My Mind', which like most of the songs would not sound out of place on any Young album closer to the mainstream by virtue of a more traditional recording style. I'm not sure about the part where Neil's voice cracks up, as previously indicated I do not need to see the nuts and bolts to understand and appreciate how real everything is supposed to be. Having said that, the despair and weariness so beautifully expressed in the sleepy tones of Neil's harmonica on this album is quite awesome. Nobody blows into that thing like Neil in this sort of mood.

'On The Beach', his next outing, retained some of the ideals of this album, but it would be his crowning achievement as an artist, whereas this is no more than a very enjoyable listen.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The seedy underbelly of rock and roll, 11 July 2004
This review is from: Tonight's The Night (Audio CD)
This for me is Neil Young's masterpiece. Most of the songs on this album are inspired by the heroin-related deaths of two of Neil Young's comrades - guitarist Danny Whitten and roadie Bruce Berry. It is an intensely dark exploration into the drug culture associated with rock and roll. The title track (and it's second part later) sets the scene by describing Berry's self-destruction. The album does not really err much from the theme of this opening shot and reaches it's emotional zenith at "Tired Eyes" - it sounds like Young is singing "open up the tired eyes" directly to Berry and Whitten in a futile attempt to bring them back from the grave. "Come on Baby Let's Go Downtown" is sung by Whitten and even though it's an upbeat song, it reinforces the whole tragic theme of the album. The whole album is entrenched in self-loathing and is funereal, the lyrics sung out of tune drunkenly which adds to the horror. The album's sleeve is mainly black - the colour of mourning and in the picture of the band onstage in the centre of the album sleeve there is an empty space onstage with Whitten's name underneath. The sheer emotional weight of this album makes it irresistable to anyone who wants to know Neil Young; this is basically his bleeding heart on CD. It is for these reasons why the has to be the greatest Neil Young album no question.
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Tonight's The Night
Tonight's The Night by Neil Young (Audio CD - 1993)
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