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American Stars ‘n Bars – Neil Young

American Stars ‘n Bars

(1977), 6.5/10
American Stars ‘n Bars was compiled from several aborted album projects, including Chrome Dreams and Homegrown, and accordingly it feels like a Neil Young sampler. There are a couple of top tier songs with the blistering guitar epic ‘Like A Hurricane’ and the compelling, hypnotic ‘Will To Love’, but much of the remainder of American Stars ‘n Bars feels like slight, second-tier material, especially the first side which is largely generic country like ‘Hold Back The Tears’ and ‘Hey Babe’. Emmylou Harris guests on the pretty ‘Star of Bethlehem’, and there’s some variation with the singalong of ‘Homegrown’ and the hard rock ‘Bite The Bullet’ with its gospel chorus. Despite a couple of major highlights, American Stars ‘n Bars is one of Young’s more dispensable albums from the 1970s.

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