Neil’s 70s run is as stellar as they come. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere (‘70) to Rust Never Sleeps (‘79), is a Usain Bolt-esque run of output. In the middle of it rests On The Beach (‘74). Listening to the triumvirate of “Blues” songs (the album features “Revolution Blues”, “Vampire Blues” and “Ambulance Blues”) I like to imagine Neil rolling up to the hickory stained wood Warner/Reprise HQ in Burbank to deliver this album to his A&R guy. The scene unfolds in a “slumber” photo filter – hazy gathering in the office with the album played at top volume, everyone excited to figure out how such a brilliant, introspective piece of darkness will be marketed to the masses. While Warner/Reprise was the artist friendly label at that time, I have to assume the lack of hit singles gave them pause. But screw it – On The Beach is an Album with a capital A. People are understandably drawn to After The Gold Rush and Harvest, but throw on On The Beach if you wanna get deeper, and look cool.
6 Word Review: Surf Neil Young Blues, Look Cool