Neil Young tears into the age of Trump with vigour

The Visitor
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Artist: Neil Young
Genre: Singer / Songwriter
Label: Reprise

"I'm Canadian by the way and I love the USA…" begins Neil Young on the march-like call to arms Already Great, before he tears into the age of Trump. The shadow of the Donald hangs over all ten tracks from the eco-warrior's cry in "Fly By Night" to the muscular "Stand Tall" ("they don't believe in science, it goes against the big money truth…").

There are two engaging examples of his way with acoustic guitar-led countryish melodies, the reflective Almost Always and the soft activism of Change of Heart ("Life is confusing, love is time bent, hate is not worth using even as cement to build your walls"). But worthy as the best of these songs are, collectively they merge into a series of repetitive slogans as in Children of Destiny ("Stand up for what you believe…").

On the credit side Young, now 72, is revelling in the solid embrace of his touring band, Promise of the Real, clearly picking up on their energy and invention. He closes with the almost 11-minute Forever which drifts off into space having opened with the lines "Earth is like a church without a preacher"; truly there's only one Neil Young.