15 Songs, 57 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Longtime Neil Young sideman pays tribute to his old boss with this acoustic collection of covers. Lofgren’s voice isn’t quite the torn and frayed instrument but he can still deliver the emotional delicacy of Young’s finest moments with the same warm definition. Perhaps most intriguing is his choice of tunes. As someone with an intimate knowledge of Young’s catalog — and someone who has played these songs alongside the man — it’s telling to see which tunes continue to resonate. “Birds,” “Like a Hurricane,” and “Only Love Can Break Your Heart” are surefire standards, but the addition of “Don’t Be Denied,” “World On a String,” “Winterlong,” and “Wonderin’” allow Lofgren to bring Young’s less known melodies and sentiments to fresh life. Not surprisingly though, these covers feel more like companion pieces to Young’s own versions. Only “Don’t Cry No Tears,” removed from its tangle of electric guitars and given a rustic acoustic run-through, is reinvented. The rest remain faithful to Young’s own idiosyncratic vision, proving Young chose the right man in Lofgren. Only question is when does Nils get around to covering his other employer, Bruce Springsteen?

EDITORS’ NOTES

Longtime Neil Young sideman pays tribute to his old boss with this acoustic collection of covers. Lofgren’s voice isn’t quite the torn and frayed instrument but he can still deliver the emotional delicacy of Young’s finest moments with the same warm definition. Perhaps most intriguing is his choice of tunes. As someone with an intimate knowledge of Young’s catalog — and someone who has played these songs alongside the man — it’s telling to see which tunes continue to resonate. “Birds,” “Like a Hurricane,” and “Only Love Can Break Your Heart” are surefire standards, but the addition of “Don’t Be Denied,” “World On a String,” “Winterlong,” and “Wonderin’” allow Lofgren to bring Young’s less known melodies and sentiments to fresh life. Not surprisingly though, these covers feel more like companion pieces to Young’s own versions. Only “Don’t Cry No Tears,” removed from its tangle of electric guitars and given a rustic acoustic run-through, is reinvented. The rest remain faithful to Young’s own idiosyncratic vision, proving Young chose the right man in Lofgren. Only question is when does Nils get around to covering his other employer, Bruce Springsteen?

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