Wednesday, November 09, 2005

A Diamond in the Fluff

Okay, I know I'm going to lose 90% of you by mentioning Neil Diamond in the first sentence.

I sometimes wonder if I'm the only guy that has attended Diamond's show four times, as well as
seen the Ramones, the Gogos, Metallica, Rage Against the Machine and hard core band Tree. Those are certainly odd bed fellows to say the least.

BUT...after close to 30 years of barren material, Neilbo has finally produced something worth listening to. "12 Songs" is not exactly rocking alongside Green Day's latest, but it is a departure from the syrup-y tripe he has been punching out since forever ago. After a plethora of horse droppings loaded with melodrama, Diamond has returned to the source in this tripped-down CD.
I'm going to spare you my "review" of individual songs, but I'll say that "Hell Yeah" comes from his gut, as do a number of these songs, and says a helluva lot about the man's life. It was a stroke of genius to lose the glitter and splash that has plagued his soul-less music and get back to basics with producer Rick Rubin, who recently worked wonders with Johnny Cash's similarly simple final effort, while enlisting aid from Heartbreaker guitarist Mike Campbell and Billy Preston.

The main difference is that Cash hadn't lost all credibility as an artist. Diamond dug down deep for this one, wanting to be remembered more for great song writing and heartfelt music than rhinestones and squishy melodrama. At 64, he wants us to know that he gives a shit. Listening to "12 songs" isn't going to make me forget "If You Know What I Mean" or "Solitary Man", but at least it eases the agony of "Lovescapes". Lovescapes was so bad it will stay with me after death, and if I happen to head down, instead of up, I imagine it will be the soundtrack Satan pipes into my cell.

Thank you for "12 songs", dude.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Free Web Site Counters
Free Web Site Counters