Prairie Wind - Neil Young

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 18
  2. Negative: 1 out of 18
  1. If Bob Dylan has been for years our best guide to exploring the complexities of human experience, Young may be the songwriter who expresses most eloquently the simple ties that bind us all. [18 Sep 2005]
  2. 100
    Deep, warm, fully rounded and with no slack, Prairie Wind is Neil at his best. [Oct 2005, p.101]
  3. For once he makes sure he's understood--a matter in which melodies that might otherwise seem overfamiliar are of great service.
  4. The pedal steel guitar playing on the whole record is breathtaking.
  5. 80
    The songs are weirder and darker than their gentle melodies indicate. [Nov 2005, p.141]
  6. Prairie Wind finds Neil Young on fine creative form and all too aware of the limited time he may have left to enjoy it. [Nov 2005, p.118]
  7. In the autumn of his career, this is one of Shaky's best.
  8. Quietly brimming with lonesome, countrified folk-rock catharsis. [Dec 2005, p.104]
  9. Despite all of its strengths, neither the recording nor the songs are as memorable or as fully realized as his late-'80s/early-'90s comeback records -- Freedom, Ragged Glory, and Harvest Moon -- let alone his classic '70s work.
  10. It's his simplest music in a while, but it's effective.
  11. Lilting instrumentation strengthens even the weakest lines.
  12. 60
    Seems largely unable to go far beyond generic musical stylings and rather lifeless, matt[e]-finish reportage. [Nov 2005, p.97]
  13. Mr. Young is pushing toward guilelessness in these 10 songs; these are messages of nearly transcendental forgiveness that have lost their old edges of fear and anger. [26 Sep 2005]
  14. Young's music is so rooted in the past, specifically the spirit of the 60s, that his stabs at contemporary relevance sound awkward and even curmudgeonly.
  15. Melodically, Young creates a comfortable, atmospheric lilt his admirers will instantly recognize. Lyrically, however, Young's lost his way.
  16. We've heard it all before, and better. [30 Sep 2005, p.93]
  17. Familiar, yes, but not unwelcome. [1 Oct 2005]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 37 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 27
  2. Negative: 4 out of 27
  1. johnf
    May 1, 2008
    Classic Neil Young for today. I enjoyed, and played along with all the songs. Neil's music is easy to follow on a guitar in many ways, as always, but while easy to follow, his genus is impossible to duplicate. I didn't really get the prairie connection until now. I liked the country side of this, and loved the line in the there a guitar player in the house... I hope everyone caught the solo at the end.. I found three different keys in which to play this.. I guess I mostly loved this. Full Review »
  2. RandyW
    Apr 14, 2007
    I don't know if this review will make this board because I didn't buy the CD, I bought the DVD and I would say GREAT. Neil Youngs Prarie Wind is a tender moving tribute to his friends and family and perhaps a portrayal of the sense of gratitude he feels for the way he was brought up and the "down home open air" lifestyle he embraces and this by a man who again has reached a sort of milestone in his life. What inspires or motivates truly great artists is often times hard to pin down. Not so with Prarie Wind or Neil Young as always, for that matter. This is a portrayal of a man who has obviously faced some difficult times recently and in a most unpretentious and graceful manner Neil gives us his very soul in this one. I found it quite refreshing. Its already been established that Youngs songs will stand the test of time, and although we are quite familier with the catalog in this one...and he's sang these songs countless times...his performence feels refreshed and new. I don't think he had to reach very far to sing these songs and make them feel like he had just written them 5 minutes ago.You can sense watching him that he has been touched and is merely sharing what he knows is a gift, his talent, his friends & his life. The stage setup again is simple yet poignent, the prarie...paying homage to his upringing and the often times overlooked simple yet bountiful lay of the land. I think the over 40 crowd will love and embrace this because it's songs and genuine sentiment are easily identifiable. Here is a Neil Young who has matured (again) to another level and openly shares his feelings in a humble tribute. Here is Neil, dare I his VERY best! He has always shown a sense of balance in his lfe, and I for one respect the fact that with the power and influence he could have misused or weilded through out his career, he has stayed true to his values. Skip the CD and purchase the DVD...truly a better portrayal and perspective of the man and his music! Phenomanal even if your only a remote fan. P.S. I purchased the double disc DVD for the bargain price of $5.95. You get way more than your moneys worth on this one folks! Full Review »
  3. MartinB
    Jul 13, 2006
    I was going to give it a 3, then I decided a 2 was all I could muster. Where do we begin with this one? It sounds like all the songs from "Harvest" that couldn't make the cut. Just because someone is a venerable old artist doesn't mean we lose all sense of taste. In a way, it's an embarrassment. I'm sorry Neil got sick and all with his aneurysm; even better reason for him not to foist this lame-o stuff on anyone. And the guy who said that "aging Boomers are enjoying getting old with Neil" needs to check his hearing aid. I gave this every chance, but the more I listened, the more it was clear what a major misstep it is. If I was like Neil Young Full Review »