Neil Young
Chrome Dreams II


Neil Young is the same old endearing kook, said Chris Willman in Entertainment Weekly. Over the years, the Godfather of Grunge has come up with more than a few oddball album concepts, but “releasing a sequel to an unreleased record is peculiar even for him.” The great, lost Chrome Dreams was supposed to hit stores in 1977, but Young mysteriously shelved it. Its follow-up, Chrome Dreams II, doesn’t stand up as one of Young’s strongest solo efforts, but “it is his most enjoyable and well-rounded one in, like, an eternity.” The album stacks dusty country ballads alongside slow-burning epic rockers, and a children’s gospel choir alongside fuzzed-out electric guitar. “It is a “solid—if never revelatory—sampler of Young’s common styles,” said Jim Farber in the New York Daily News. Chrome Dreams II runs more than an hour, but half is filled by a mere two songs: the 11 Qw -minute “No Hidden Path” and the 18-minute “Ordinary People.” Young first debuted “Ordinary People,” a populist narrative about every kind of American imaginable, on tour in 1988, and many fans had considered it Young’s greatest unreleased song. Its presence here doesn’t make up for such a “miss-or-hit” album, said Robert Christgau in Rolling Stone. Even if we never heard its predecessor, Chrome Dreams II comes across as just another second-rate sequel.