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Sleeps With Angels

4 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
Discover this year's nominees on CD and Vinyl, including Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, Best New Artist of the Year, and more. Learn more

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Aug. 16 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Reprise
  • ASIN: B000002MUC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #25,321 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. My Heart
2. Prime Of Life
3. Driveby
4. Sleeps With Angels
5. Western Hero
6. Change Your Mind
7. Blue Eden
8. Safeway Cart
9. Train Of Love
10. Trans Am
11. Piece Of Crap
12. A Dream That Can Last

Product Description

Product Description

Certified gold by the RIAA 10/94


If Neil Young has a pronounced weakness, it's a lack of focus. Restless to a fault, he's apt to rush into the recording studio without fully forming his ideas. Sleeps with Angels is that kind of album--and yet it's one of his best. Jarred by the death of Kurt Cobain (the rock & roll martyr quoted Young in his suicide note), he dashed off this collection of songs in 1994 with backing from his steadfast electric warriors, Crazy Horse. At least two songs--the title track and "Change Your Mind"--seem to directly refer to Cobain. Others--"Driveby" and "Safeway Cart" among the most striking--are mesmerizing and gloomy. Still others--"Piece of Crap," "Blue Eden"--are raw and cutting. Goes to show an elegy, no matter how somber, needn't be a hushed affair. --Steven Stolder

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I hated to album when I first heard it, but I really didn't give it close attention. I expected something to reach out and grab me the way "Freedom" or "Ragged Glory" did, and my initial assessment was a sloppy, tired, boring failure. But over the years a lot of people have prodded me, telling me it's much better than that, and having given it a real chance, I have to admit I was wrong. It's one of Neil's most interesting albums, sonically and lyrically. The harrowing atmosphere has been compared to that surrounding "Tonight's The Night," but the sound is very different. Here, it's almost apocalyptic, with a heavy and occasionally experimental production that you won't find on Neil's more well-known albums.
"My Heart" is pretty strange and off-kilter song. On paper, the words could have come out of a Broadway show, but when you hear this song sung in a quivering, straining vocal, occasionally double-tracked in a way that feels slightly off, and played on that tack piano out of "Touch of Evil," it really gets under your skin after awhile. This pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the CD where just about everything has something disturbing about it. On the title track, the immediate impact and tremendous loss of Cobain's death on his wife is surrounded in the most oppressive sound to ever grace a Neil Young record. He may have achieved greater levels of distortion elsewhere, but the dirge-like lyrics with the desperate, off-key chorus occasionally surfacing throughout the song makes this even more harrowing, the aural equivalent of a Franz Kafka novel.
I could go on an on (the ominous throb of the strange road epic "Trans Am", etc.) if I had the space.
But it's not all doom and gloom.
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Format: Audio CD
This is a definite candidate for Neil Young's best album ever; it is, quite simply, a beautiful, haunting melancholy masterpiece. It came as quite a surprise to everyone after the raging, upbeat Ragged Glory, did this gloomy series of death odes. Inspired no doubt in part by the suicide of Kurt Cobain - which occurred during the recording of this album; at least two songs (the title track and Change Your Mind) seem to be about the fallen rocker, who quoted one of Neil's songs in his suicide note - this album is a series dark, moving, extremely powerful vignettes that rank it among the most moving and amazing albums I have ever heard. This is surely the most diverse record from Neil to feature Crazy Horse: it's not the endless heavy jamming that you may well expect. The album is fairly musically diverse: the bookend tracks on the album feature beautiful, moving tack piano playing from Neil, and Prime of Life even features him performing on the flute. Tough-as-nails guitarist Frank "Poncho" Sampedro even turns in delicate performances on the piano on more than a handful of tracks. The set features one of Neil's most moving and harrowing set of lyrics ever - on par with Tonight's The Night, but perhaps even gloomier. Most all of the songs are overtly concerned with death (the light filler track Piece of [Junk] (undoubtedly included to lighten the mood after nearly an hour's worth of heavy listening) nonwithstanding), and Neil turns in some of his most beautiful, delicate vocals ever here. The vocal melodies from the band are quite great as well. Most all of the songs have haunting, beautiful arrangements and fine melodies. However, although the lyrics, vocals, and vocal melodies on this album are almost universally outstanding, the music matches the mood precisely, and is often great as well.Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
Neil Young and Crazy Horse never fail to amaze, and this album is no exception. This album is one of the darkest, if not the darkest ever released by Neil Young. I first heard this album when I was 12, but did not buy it until I was 15, and I am glad I did.
The majority of the album is comprised of electric songs, with two piano songs placed on the album as bookends. Here is a song-by-song analysis.
MY HEART: Great intro, simple but beautiful song. This song features Neil on tack piano.
PRIME OF LIFE: Features Neil on flute, great melody and lyrics.
DRIVEBY: Very slow, sad song, excellent track.
SLEEPS WITH ANGELS: This song was written when Neil heard of the suicide of Kurt Cobain. Very slow, dark, moody song.
WESTERN HERO: Classic Neil Young melody, great storyline in the lyrics. This melody creeps up later on another song on the album.
CHANGE YOUR MIND: Without a doubt, the best song on the album. Great guitar solos after every verse. This song is sort of a sister to "Cowgirl In The Sand" found on the album Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, released well over two decades before this. Not exactly sure what this song is about, but that doesn't matter. Chock full of great guitar solos and a beautiful vocal melody. One of the best songs he has ever recorded with Crazy Horse, definitely recommended. The songs clocks in at over 14 minutes long.
BLUE EDEN: Great jam. Very slow and bluesy.
SAFEWAY CART: This song is another slow one, very dark and eerie, yet soothing at the same time. Love listening to it at night with headphones.
TRAIN OF LOVE: Same melody as "Western Hero," see that song for more info.
TRANS AM: This is a classic Neil story-song. Quite dark, great chord progression.
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