Album Review: “Tonight’s the Night” By Neil Young

Album Review: “Tonight’s the Night” By Neil Young | I Love Classic Rock Videos

Album cover for Tonight's The Night - neilyoungchannel / Youtube

Classic Neil Young was at his peak in the 1970s. The notable Harvest became a landmark record that found itself in an awkward predicament of being a hard one to top. 1975 rolled in and Tonight’s The Night came along – but as a reaction, not premeditated. This was due to the subsequent deaths of Danny Whitten (Crazy Horse guitarist and songwriter) and Bruce Berry (roadie). Young’s response to their passing was raw, unapologetic, and blunt.

While most would argue that the folk-rocker was at his sloppiest in the album, no one could deny the emotion seeping through every performance. Young just had to release that welling madness within him, and this was the perfect execution to accompany it. Berry is honored in the title track, which bookends the album with two different versions, while Whitten joins the number, albeit preemptively, with “Come On Baby Let’s Go Downtown”, written by the guitarist himself and recorded with Crazy Horse at the Fillmore East sometime in 1970.

Nobody expected Neil Young to take this particular trajectory, as his usual feel-good musicality was temporarily set aside for this intimate commentary on his personal grievances, as well as that with the turmoil-laden world.