Living With War (Both of them): Neil Young

Rating: 50%

Living_with_War_(Neil_Young_album_-_cover_art)In 2006, Neil Young released his twenty-eighth studio album called “Living with War.” Upon listening to it for the first time, I just couldn’t get past all of the choir work on the album.   I understood the theme of the album and although I disagreed with his message, I respected his point of view. The lyrics are protesting the right wing conservative views of the Reagan and Bush years, zeroing in George W. for his wars in the Middle East.

Musically, the album was great. Neil Young brought some fresh styles into his music. The brass parts were done well. The quality of the sound was good. Regarding sound, I thought that the music was very deep and dark at times. The musicianship of Neil Young on vocals and guitars were great. Bassist Rick Rosas, I thought did a good job on bass as well as drummer Chad Cromwell. Tom Bray played the trumpet and I thought that his role added to the overall sound.

Track listing:

1. “After the Garden” 3:23
2. “Living with War” 5:04
3. “The Restless Consumer” 5:47
4. “Shock and Awe” 4:53
5. “Families” 2:25
6. “Flags of Freedom” 3:42
7. “Let’s Impeach the President” 5:10
8. “Lookin’ for a Leader” 4:03
9. “Roger and Out” 4:25
10. “America the Beautiful” (Katharine Lee Bates, Samuel A. Ward) 2:57

Living_with_war_raw.jpgLiving With War: In the Beginning:

Rating: 70%

Later in 2006, Neil Young released a stripped down version of “Living With War” simply called “Living With War: In the Beginning.” When this was released, I was very hesitant about adding this to my Neil Young collection. But I managed to get a copy of it and this album has actually replaced the original “Living With War” as the choir is not on this version.

This album is more enjoyable to listen to. The sound is still good, but the remixing of the background vocals and removing the choir was a smart idea on behalf of Neil Young.

Track listing:

1. “After the Garden” – 3:25
2.”Living with War” – 5:08
3.”The Restless Consumer” – 5:51
4.”Shock and Awe” – 4:56
5.”Families” – 2:33
6.”Flags of Freedom” – 3:45
7.”Let’s Impeach the President” – 4:34
8.”Lookin’ for a Leader” – 4:08
9.”Roger and Out” – 4:23

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