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Hitchhiker Image
Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 21 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 16 Ratings

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  • Summary: Originally recorded in 1976 with producer David Briggs but never released, the acoustic album from the Canadian singer-songwriter features two unreleased songs as well as early versions of songs that appeared in later albums.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Sep 8, 2017
    91
    If we could go back to a time where we had never heard these songs before, Hitchhiker would more than stand on its own as a brilliant piece of performance art. Stripped of the subsequent mythology or knowledge of what these songs would eventually become, each performance remains beautiful in its own right.
  2. Uncut
    Aug 18, 2017
    90
    The intimacies of David Briggs' production and the pure strength of the songs suggest an album that, with a few overdubs and a bit more polish could have worked as that desperately anticipated follow-up to Harvest. ... Pride of place, though, goes to the two unreleased tracks {Give Me Strength and Hawaii]. [Oct 2017, p.
  3. 90
    Originally rejected by Reprise Records executives as being nothing more than a bunch of demos, the entire set is spun with some strange, surreal and beautiful magic.
  4. Sep 6, 2017
    80
    Although Young's had plenty of highs and lows throughout his sprawling discography, there's no question that each of his 38 studio LPs were results of a particular vision, and Hitchhiker benefits greatly from this fleeting vision captured over a single evening in 1976.
  5. Sep 11, 2017
    80
    His tremulous voice and weed-fuelled guitar still resonating 41 years on.
  6. 80
    Here, deprived of Crazy Horse and Young’s tectonic lead guitar, “Powderfinger” assumes its natural form as an antique folk ballad, while the haunting “Pocahontas”, minus overdubs, is likewise more nakedly vulnerable.
  7. Mojo
    Oct 27, 2017
    60
    Side by side in this unfamiliar setting, well-known songs become unsettling. [Oct 2017, p.104]

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Sep 24, 2017
    8
    I had given Neil Young a bit of rest since 2014's Storytone rarely listening to any of his varied catalogue and prior to that he would be oneI had given Neil Young a bit of rest since 2014's Storytone rarely listening to any of his varied catalogue and prior to that he would be one of my go to listens. This is an interesting album from 1976, originally recorded in a single day, that was long kept in the vaults and it contains the original stripped down versions of songs that have since been released on subsequent Neil Young albums, the most notable being Pocahontas and Powderfinger. There are two newly released tracks. I like the studio chatter between songs and it has a rough at the edges feel to it. It's an excellent collection of songs that are quite delightful in this form though perhaps they will not be as accessible to those coming to Neil Young for the first time. This album sits well and compares favorably with Neil Young's classic 70's period without quite reaching those peaks. Expand
  2. Jul 13, 2018
    8
    Leftovers. The album isn't only this, the music here has too much quality too, it couldn't understand why this were been shelved by 40 years.Leftovers. The album isn't only this, the music here has too much quality too, it couldn't understand why this were been shelved by 40 years. OK, most of these songs were known by public, but it's quite interesting listening its seminal versions. Tasteful acoustic guitar soft folk songs and beautiful pianos that makes experience at minimum pleasant. It could seen that Neil Young is too good artist when even in studio leftovers he does work well (a detail, he was high when he was recording Hitchhiker, isn't him a surprising artist?). Expand

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