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Mirror Ball

4.1 out of 5 stars 37 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 27 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Reprise
  • ASIN: B000002MZ9
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars 37 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #22,154 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Song X
2. Act Of Love
3. I'm The Ocean
4. Big Green Country
5. Truth Be Known
6. Downtown
7. What Happened Yesterday
8. Peace and Love
9. Throw Your Hatred Down
10. Scenery
11. Fallen Angel

Product Description

Product Description

His 1973 live album, recorded on tour with the Hollywood studio band The Stray Gators. Includes Last Dance; Yonder Stands the Sinner , more.


Substituting eager Pearl Jam for wizened Crazy Horse, Young returns to the Ragged Glory formula--big guitars, droning rhythm, mystical poetry--for this one-off 1995 CD after a joint concert tour. Pearl Jam, especially new drummer Jack Irons, focuses Young's ideas and challenges him in ways the more forgiving Horse never does. "Downtown" became an immediate rock-radio hit, and the song's three-chord force keeps even the lines about dancing hippies and Jimi Hendrix from getting stale. Singer Eddie Vedder shows up sporadically but makes the most of a shadowy bridge on "Peace and Love." --Steve Knopper

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
On paper this looks like a great match up, the "Grandfather of Grunge" teaming with his disciples, Pearl Jam. The bad news is that it does not create the masterful one off project that it could of been.
It is hard to put a finger on why this album comes up short, but the most glaring is that the songs are not very consistant. DOWNTOWN, I'M THE OCEAN and FALLEN ANGEL are good songs, but the rest are pretty non-descript. To make matters worse, Pearl Jam tend to play at one pace throughout the album and tend to bulldoze any subtlety out of the material. Cray Horse is not as talented musically as PJ, but they know how to support the boss and bring out his best assets.
This is not a bad work, but I fail to see how it can get 5 stars from anyone. I don't really play this too often, but when I do I can seldom make it through the duration. This appears to have more in common with Neil's inconsistant 80's work than his more inspired 90's output.
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Format: Audio CD
8 years later, this CD holds up brilliantly. Young was certainly intoxicated by the breath of fresh, extremely competent and challenging musicianship that Pearl Jam offered him, much as he was by the power trio of the FREEDOM CD. How much Crazy Horse can one man take? In any case, as a band, not just a leader with a pack of bungling sidekicks, Young and Pearl Jam deliver one of the best CDs of his career. There are some truly great numbers here: "Peace and Love", "I'm the Ocean" (which would resurface on GREENDALE as "Be the Rain"), "Throw Your Hatred Down" (which resonates more profoundly given the current geo-political crises) are absolutely classic Young songs on a level with "Hurricane" and "Powderfinger". The throwaway cut here is "Downtown," which at the time was the "hit." He needs to lay off anything that might even suggest Danny Whitten.
The rest is amazing stuff and seems to suggest that in the effort to somehow validate ourselves via the fetishization fans embrace for rock stars, or for that matter any icon of the cult of personality, we lose sight of what is so precious about our own lives, become tranfixed and mesmerized by the glittering lights bouncing off the mirror ball. Extend that to a national scope and it becomes a pandemic of nationalistic narcissism, which of course begets the cultural wars fed by isolationist persecution complexes.Well, maybe I'm reading a bit into this. Truth is, there was a time Young could inspire you to think. Anyway, for those who just want to rock and roll, this will do it for you. Young would find additional inspiration in his return to Crazy Horse, although his return to CSN would actual deaden his focus. The guy who eschewed the pop stardom of HARVEST, would somehow seek it out at the end of the nineties. At this point, though, Neil was firing on all burners and this is a great, great testament to a songwriter justifying his reputation.
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Format: Audio CD
A lot of folks were very critical of this album when it first came out, saying Neil had latched onto the "grandfather of grunge" label with a vengeance. Anyone who's followed Mr. Young's career should certainly know that he has no allegiance to any group. Rather, he's chasing his musical muse and at times that must has led him to Crazy Horse, the Shocking Pinks, CS&N, International Harvesters, and various other line-ups. In this one-time collaboration with Pearl Jam, Neil is not overwhelmed by Eddie Vedder (who only supplies background vocals on a couple of tracks), and he certain holds his own with the band. Recorded over four days, in typical Neil get it down and move on fashion, Mirror Ball has held up well. Two tracks especially still appeal to me: Downtown (no, not Petula Clark's version!) and the anthemic Peace and Love. I had my doubts when I bought this CD, but after 7 years it still gets regular rotation in my CD player, and that's something I can't say about roughly 80 percent of the CDs I buy.
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Format: Audio CD
As a long-time admirer of Neil Young and a casual fan of Pearl Jam, I always fancied this album would be a worthwhile and memorable project. I was not disappointed. Mirror Ball is similar to some of Neil Young's other "jam" albums - Ragged Glory, Broken Arrow - in essence, but is quite a bit wider in scope. While the "incompetent yet brilliant" musicians of Crazy Horse have always personified the Garage Band That Made It Really Big and are the adequate and ideal band for backing Neil Young's rawer, less lyrically ambitious, more jam-heavy songs, you usually know just what to expect from the Neil Young & Crazy Horse albums - and that's just what you get. Rarely do they challenge their bandleader. Pearl Jam, while not featuring Yes-level musicianship, are nonetheless a tighter and more focused (not to mention more famous - hence, the automatic higher expectations) band - and they do push Young at points on this recording. Here he has written far more ambitious songs than he usually does in the context of this type of album: his lyrics here are some of his best ever - vivid, imagistic, startling, and captivating. The album also pushes the envelope musically. In addition to Neil, one of rock music's best and most distinctive guitar players, we have Pearl Jam's two fine players - Mike McCready and Stone Gossard - as well. They create, together, some truly great musical interplay on this record. Although still raw in essence, these songs move beyond the musical (and lyrical) level that you would expect from this type of Neil Young album: it's another level of sophistication. Neil has also written some truly great songs for this record - Song X, Peace and Love, Downtown, Scenery, and, especially, I'm The Ocean. An essential record for Young fans; Pearl Jam fans should take the dive as well.
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