Tonight's the Night / Speakin' Out / World on a String / Borrowed Tune / Come on Everybody Let's Go Downtown / Mellow My Mind / Roll Another Number / Albuquerque / New Mama / Lookout Joe / Tired Eyes / Tonight's the Night
by Damon Ogden
Tonight's the Night is like an OD letter - the whole thing is about life, dope, and death. "I probably feel this album more than anything else I've ever done," said Neil Young in Rolling Stone (August 14, 1975). I also feel this album - more than any other Neil Young album, or any album ever - completely captures the essence of what I believe makes Neil Young such a great artist: His ability to put his mood, his beliefs, and himself into his work. Following Neil's work is a roller-coaster ride, and Tonight's the Night is both the low point and the high point all rolled into one confused. angry, sad, but brilliant piece. This album is not pretty, and undoubtedly would not be the first album you're going to pull out for a friend interested in hearing Neil for the first time, unless maybe you and your friend are drunk. TTN was inspired by Bruce Berry, a longtime roadie, and Danny Whitten of Crazy Horse, who both died of drug overdoses. It was recorded over two years before its release in mid-1975, but was shelved in favor of On the Beach. In 1975, Neil was playing his next album, Homegrown, for friends and TTN followed on the reel. Neil decided TTN was better than the still-unreleased Homegrown, and it was released instead. The album was sequenced by Elliot Roberts, with three tracks, "Lookout Joe," "Borrowed Tune," and "Come on Baby Let's Go Downtown" (recorded in 1970 with Whitten signing lead) added to the original nine songs. This album is raw, ragged, and powerful music. Every listener will have a different experience based upon their tastes and state of mind at the time of listening. TTN is a must for any collector of Neil Young albums.