A Letter Home - Neil Young
A Letter Home Image
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Originally released on vinyl for Third Man Records on Record Store Day, the 12-track lo-fi covers album from the Canadian singer-songwriter features songs from such artists as Bob Dylan, The Everly Brothers, Bert Jansch, Willie Nelson, Phil Ochs, and Bruce Springsteen.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Jul 18, 2014
    80
    This one is an expression of respect to people whose work shaped his, as well as grateful a shout-out to a few pals who haven’t passed yet.
  2. May 27, 2014
    80
    Without any studio trickery to distract from the songs, versions of Bert Jansch's Needle of Death and Gordon Lightfoot's If You Could Read My Mind sound particularly affecting.
  3. Jun 4, 2014
    70
    A Letter Home illustrates that vagaries of sound quality can sometimes enhance the drama of a record, and rarely undermine the potency of a good song. [Jul 2014, p.68]
  4. May 2, 2014
    63
    For an album recorded primitively inside a Nashville box, there are some stunning performances on A Letter Home.... Occasionally, though, the recording quality distracts from the album's content.
  5. Jun 5, 2014
    60
    The songs are old, and the album sounds really old.
  6. You’re not listening to songs so much as attempting to pull up the past as if it were an old pair of trousers, and then rope it into place with lengths of digital cable. It is both ridiculous and oddly moving.
  7. Jul 1, 2014
    40
    There’s nothing here as radical as Young’s brazen take on God Save The Queen, for his far more engaging 2012 covers set, Americana, and the performances are decidedly tossed-off, even by Young’s capture-the-moment standards.

See all 24 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. BKM
    May 29, 2014
    5
    A Letter Home is intended as an homage to a bygone era when music was less about production and more about songwriting and emotion. That's all well and good, but Young's collection of covers sounds so scratchy and chaotic that you almost wish for a little bit of polish to keep things from becoming an ordeal to listen to. Expand