The Naked Ride Home

The Naked Ride Home

Having been a voice of personal reflection in the ‘70s and of political conscience through much of the ‘80s, Jackson Browne has spent the ensuing decades refining his thoughts. He’s worked with his band to reignite his music, while his lyrics remain sincerely crafted and show a flair for being heard as music. Here, words flow effortlessly throughout the mischievous title track, where he “failed to hear the heart that was beating alone.” The guitars snarl, the harmonies race for the sun, and the song hits the freeway with the perfect cruise. “The Night Inside Me” aches with Browne’s memories of youth and the world of untapped possibilities that have since come true. While “Casino Nation” looks into questionable economic principles, “Sergio Leone” adds a spaghetti western feel (with a Fender Rhodes!) to a song “where the money is immortal and the killing never ends.” Browne’s ability to put a human face on such desperation remains one of his greatest talents, along with the romantic sweet surrender seen on “My Stunning Mystery Companion.”

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