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12 Songs Image
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 15 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 42 Ratings

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  • Summary: Producer Rick Rubin attempts to do for Neil Diamond what he did for Johnny Cash, resulting in a rare stripped-down, intimate set for the veteran performer. (Don't expect any Nine Inch Nails covers, though; these are all Diamond originals.)

Top Track

Delirious Love
Pretty soon we were takin' it serious Me and you underneath a mysterious spell Nothin' I could do and it suddenly felt like a bolt out of hell I'm... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. Entertainment Weekly
    100
    [The] tension between Rubin's desire to pare it down and Diamond's tendency to amp it up makes for the best musical checks and balances; nothing gets too unplugged or too bombastic. [11 Nov 2005, p.67]
  2. Spiritual, lovelorn and vulnerable, this is the album Diamond has deserved for decades.
  3. 100
    It's stripped down (and we're not just talking about the jumpsuits), simple and the songwriter's best work in ages.
  4. Mojo
    80
    It's not flawless, though it's damn good, and consistently engrossing. [Feb 2006, p.94]
  5. It’s not that Diamond has recorded a masterpiece, since quite a good portion of this is decidedly B material. It’s that the good stuff represents Neil at his best, exploiting his considerable knack for melody and structure to the fullest.
  6. For some, the excursions into god-bothering territory ("Create Me", "Man Of God") will be too mawkish, but few could deny that we're now in the full swing of a fascinating new era - a place where rock'n'roll, formerly the preserve of the doomed teenager with nothing to lose, has grown old.
  7. Not all of Diamond's new songs go awry. Most just go away, their melodies dissipating, their lyrics flimsy even through those tremendous pipes.

See all 15 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 37
  2. Negative: 5 out of 37
  1. EricN
    Nov 27, 2006
    10
    a year has passed since I purchased this album,and the music still haunts and moves me.Neil Diamond has tapped into a well of lyrical and a year has passed since I purchased this album,and the music still haunts and moves me.Neil Diamond has tapped into a well of lyrical and musical truths that is rare in these times.All sung with a voice that remains one of a kind.As a 30 something,it speaks volumes that a 65 year old is expressing what I'm feeling better then bands of my generation.The self-doubts of "Hell Yeah" and "What's It Gonna Be".The inner-dreamer and romantic of "Oh Mary","Save Me a Saturday Night" and "Captain of a Shipwreck".The pessimist loner of "Im On To You","Create Me" and "Face Me".The believer-despite-it-all of "Man of God".Just powerful music.The one uptempo rocker, "Delirious Love" stands out from the introspection.But "Delirious Love" is also a three chord guitar gem that goes back to the days when Neil was just a great rocker from Brooklyn. Expand
  2. LedaC
    Nov 26, 2005
    10
    I love this CD. It reminds me of early Neil Diamond songs. I especially like Man of God. I have played the CD, many times, since buying it.
  3. JasonD
    Nov 8, 2005
    10
    Amazing acoustic album. Neil's best in more than 20 years, and one of the best CD's of the year.
  4. BobbieD
    Dec 30, 2005
    10
    I haven't purchased a Neil Diamond album since the 80's. I love his old stuff and this CD is so reminicent of that. It's terrific!!!!
  5. march
    Feb 17, 2006
    9
    Back to the roots and the essence of what is songwriting about: hell yeah! Being a long time Diamond fan but getting more and more Back to the roots and the essence of what is songwriting about: hell yeah! Being a long time Diamond fan but getting more and more disappointed with his work since the Jazz Singer and finally losing him almost, I'm delighted. Some years ago after hearing what Rubin made Cash do a decade ago, I wondered what would come of it when Diamond and Rubin would join together because Diamond deserved it (as well),. And now it's there, what a reinvention of the man, songs stripped down to simple beauty, reminding of his best stuff from the past and at the end for desert Brian Wilson shows up touching 'hilareous love' with that light Beach Boys Mozart kind of joy: a comeback turning in to a party: to be continued I hope. Expand
  6. JohnC
    Feb 7, 2006
    8
    Tuneful and engaging. I felt that the tracks hung together quite well as an album. There seemed to be a little more instrumentation added to Tuneful and engaging. I felt that the tracks hung together quite well as an album. There seemed to be a little more instrumentation added to each song as the album progressed, resulting in a subtle hour long crescendo. Expand
  7. FredW
    Nov 12, 2005
    0
    I know it's not Neil's doing but how can I support and enjoy a CD that has Sony Spyware?

See all 37 User Reviews