Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young “Déjà Vu” 1970 US Folk Rock,Country Rock (500 Greatest Albums All Of Time Rolling Stone)


Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young “Déjà Vu” 1970 US Folk Rock,Country Rock  (500 Greatest Albums All Of Time Rolling Stone) 
full spotify
https://open.spotify.com/album/5bHkK1X4WEOzNvRhehvOcb

CSNY Deja Vu Film on vimeo

https://vimeo.com/111074728


Along with many other people, I had hoped that the addition of Neil Young to Crosby, Stills, and Nash would give their music the guts and substance which the first album lacked. Live performances of the group suggested that this had happened. Young’s voice, guitar, compositions and stage presence added elements of darkness and mystery to songs which had previously dripped a kind of saccharine sweetness. Unfortunately, little of this influence carried over into the recording sessions for Déjà Vu. Despite Young’s formidable job on many of the cuts, the basic sound hasn’t changed a whit. It’s still too sweet, too soothing, too perfect, and too good to be true. 

Take for example all of side two. Here we have a splendid showcase of all the Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young strong points — precision playing, glittering harmonies, a relaxed but forceful rhythm, and impeccable twelve-string guitars. But are there any truly first rate songs here? If there are, I don’t hear them. David Crosby’s “Deja Vu” has little or no tune and fails totally to capture the eerie feeling that accompanies a real deja vu experience. “Our House” by Graham Nash is a flyweight ditty with nothing to say and makes this clear through its simpering melody. Steve Stills’ “4+20” conjures up some quiet enigmas, but with such tepid questions at stake, who really cares? Neil Young’s “Country Girl” continues his tradition of massive production numbers which includes the masterful “Broken Arrow” and “Down By The River.” But compared to his earlier work, the piece is sadly undistinguished. In both this song and the next one, “Everybody I Love You,” Young’s voice is absorbed in the major key barbershop harmonizing of the other singers. C, S, N and Y could probably do the best version of “Sweet Adeline” in recorded history. 

One’s disappointment with the album is heightened by the absurdity of its pretensions. The heralded leather cover turns out to be nothing more than crimpled cardboard. What a milestone — fake leatherette! The grainy portrait of the “Old West” characters on the cover looks less like Billy the Kid, the James Gang and Buffalo Bill than the waiting room for unemployed extras for Frontier Atmosphere Inc. “Now then, which of you desperados is next?” And, of course, the pretty gold leaf lettering turns out to be yellow Reynolds Wrap. Deja Vu would like to convince you that it has roots deep in the American soil. But a closer inspection reveals that its tap root is firmly implanted in the urban commercial asphalt. 
There is much on this album of real merit. “Helpless,” “Carry On” and “Teach Your Children” are excellent songs, well performed. But for me Crosby, Stills and Nash — plus or minus Neil Young — will probably remain the band that asks the question, “What can we do that would be really heavy?” And then answers, “How about something by Joni Mitchell?”..Rolling Stone…~


Déjà Vu is the sophomore effort by the super group with the expanded name of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, after the addition of Neil Young to the group. Each of the four named members of the group contributed an original composition to each side of the original LP, which worked to give this album a very diverse musical and textual feel overall. following its release, the album topped the charts in the US and went on to be the most successful record overall for the group as a four piece. 

The 1969 self-titled debut by Crosby, Stills & Nash was a critical and commercial success. On that album, Stephen Stills played the bulk of the instruments with drummer Dallas Taylor being the only player outside the core trio. After the album’s release and success, the band looked to add more players, at first trying to recruit Steve Winwood (to no avail). At the urging of Atlantc Records founder Ahmet Ertegün, Young was brought on as a fourth member, reuniting him with Stills, his Buffalo Springfield bandmate. This updated group then embarked on their initial tour in the summer of 1969. 

Through late 1969, great anticipation was building for another album by the group. Ultimately, the album took a long time to record, with over 500 studio hours logged over the course of five months. The end result is an album filled with precise playing, rich harmonies, and strong rhythms, with three charting singles and several more tracks which have sustained throughout the decades.
The songs through most of Déjà Vu are great Americana classics which, if they are flawed at all, are just a bit too short in duration. “Carry On” has an upbeat acoustic folk intro. Still’s thumping bass and some hand percussion are present through much of the opening verses. The later section changes direction a bit while still giving room for harmonies to fully shine along with some great electric guitar licks. “Teach Your Children” is a pure, steady country tune by Graham Nash, featuring exquisite harmonies throughout. This track also has some impressive pedal steel by guest Jerry Garcia, who made this signature arrangement in return for the CSNY teaching members of the Grateful Dead how to effectively harmonize for their upcoming 1970 albums. 

“Almost Cut My Hair” is a bluesy, hippie anthem by David Crosby, featuring a triple guitar attack by Crosby, Stills, and most especially Young on lead guitar. This track is also the most ‘live’ sounding on the album and features no harmonies, with Crosby alone supplying the soulful lead vocals throughout. The album again changes direction with Young’s “Helpless”, where Neil plays acoustic, electric, piano, and harmonica along with the lead vocals. This track was originally recorded by Young with Crazy Horse in early 1969. The album’s first side concludes with “Woodstock”, a song written by Joni Mitchell as a folk song but adapted by CSNY as a rocked out version with potent, electric guitar motifs and exceptionally harmonized counter-melodies during the choruses. Mitchell did not play at the actual Woodstock festival, but wrote the song based on accounts from then-boyfriend Nash, and recorded her own version for the album, Ladies of the Canyon.
Side two of the album contains five more fine tracks, although not quite at the level of the first side. Crosby’s title track, “Déjà Vu”, may be the oddest song on the album, as it slowly works its way into an acoustic groove for the intro section but then abruptly breaks into a slow, bluesy rock for the duration. Nash’s “Our House” is a very British pop, piano love tune, unlike anything this band had done before or since. The song simply portrays a day in the life of Nash and Mitchell verbatim. “4 + 20” is a short acoustic folk tune by Stills, followed by Young’s “Country Girl”, a loose medley with a waltz-like beat, deep organ textures in the background, and slight harmonies. The album concludes with “Everybody I Love You”, the only collaboration on the album (between Stills and Young), which seems like the least finished track on the album overall. 

Within a year after the successful release of Déjà Vu, each of the four members recorded solo albums — Crosby’s If I Could Only Remember My Name, Stills’ self-titled debut, Nash’s Songs for Beginners and Young’s After the Gold Rush, all four of which reached the Top 20 on the charts. However, there would not be another CSNY studio album by all four until American Dream in 1988, nearly two decades later…Classic Rock review….~


A milestone record of the folk-rock movement, CSN’s second album together (and their first with Y) was a virtual how-to for flower children entering adulthood in the ‘70s. It offers sweetly harmonized instruction on how to embrace domesticity (“Our House”), raise kids (“Teach Your Children”), and steer clear of trouble without selling out (“Almost Cut My Hair”). But Déjà Vu’s great power is its enigmatic familiarity, which carries Aquarian Age ideals into a new era (“Woodstock,” “Carry On”)….~


1970s Déjà Vu is easily the greatest album from Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young. It might be arguably the greatest Electric Folk album of all time. It’s a total masterpiece, there isn’t anything resembling a bad song on it. It is simply one rocking folky masterpiece after another. Déjà Vu has not one, not two, not four, but five utterly perfect songs on it, five. How many albums can claim that? Carry On, Teach Your Children, Helpless, Woodstock, and Country Girl, all without flaw. This album is a perfect snapshot of a single moment in time. The last of the youthful optimism of the 1960s giving way to the jaded cynicism of the 1970s. Déjà Vu give voice to the death of one tumultuous decade, and the birth of another. It’s an utter must have for any real Rock fan….by…DarthKarl ….~


A mighty fine rock album… 
Having enjoyed ‘Crosby, Stills & Nash’, the next step was to check out 'Deju Vu’ by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’. And initially I could ask: did they really need Neil Young on this set? would CSN had been better just focusing on themselves and building on the excellent work from the debut?? 
I am not suggesting Neil Young’s tracks here are poor, but was his contribution really needed on this album? I’m really not sure, I think I would have preferred to keep these two artists separate and thus enjoy the Neil Young tracks on his own albums. 
'Deju Vu’ is a good album, some of the lyrics in places are cringe worthy, check out 'Our House’ and 'Almost Cut My Hair’ for example, but that concern aside, if you enjoyed 'Crosby, Stills & Nash’, you will enjoy this album too. It’s not quite as good, but close enough!…by….corkie …~


Neil Young’s presence completely enlivens this album. His songs (“Helpless” and “Country Girl”) are by some distance the best on the album and his wacky, crunching, un-virtuoso lead guitar adds massive amounts of sonic intrigue to Crosby’s melodramatic “Almost Cut My Hair” (which would have been flat-out silly otherwise) and the cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock”. Stills’ “Carry On” is slick and accomplished but as always with him, there’s just a slight bit of overkill to it. Crosby’s title track could be described the same way. Stills’ “4 + 20” is pretentious, gentle crud and Nash’s two contributions (which were the album’s two biggest hits) are the despicably sanctimonious “Teach Your Children” (not even Jerry Garcia’s pedal steel can save it) and the insipid “Our House” proving that his menace is not reserved to his castrati harmonizing alone. A complete throwaway closes out the album. This was one of the most popular albums of the era and earned these three yahoos and a reluctant Neil Young status as the pop music spokespersons of the counterculture. While Young’s one overt political statement (“Ohio”, not on this album) holds up timelessly, the empty “right-ons” of the jockish Stills, the embarrassing paranoia of Crosby and the moneyed condescension of Nash do not. Valuable as a time capsule but its musical value is almost entirely down to the presence of the guy after the ampersand….by…Dever78 …~


These were the times, and these are the stories of those times … 
While the first Crosby, Stills and Nash album was a sensational hit, there were many who were hoping that both the vocals and guitar work of Neil Young would bring a darker mystery to this outing, rather than the sublime sweetness from the CS&N album. And while Neil did a masterful job, he wasn’t able to overshadow his numerous band mates, to convince them into changing the style and tenor that they and the record industry were not willing to step away from, hence we would not get super group songs in the style of “Down By The River” or “When You Dance.” The track “Country Girl” gave me great hope that the production might swing into high gear with Young at the helm, creating a complexity that only he can bring to the table, yet even that paled in comparison to his solo projects. 

Of course, just seeing the physical albums was enough to entice one to purchase it, though in retrospect, the cynics [actually Rolling Stone Magazine was quite displeased with the venture] would have you realize that the album jacket wasn’t really leather, it was just heavy paper crushed by a millstone to give the appearance of leather, and the grainy image of cowboys under the low spreading branches of a tree, turned less into gunslingers on the run, and more into that of the ‘men folk’ at a family reunion … and that with this packaging, CSN&Y seemed to be trying to convince listeners that their roots sprang from the good earth of American music. That being said the glittering harmonies [which sometimes got just a bit too sweet for my ears], musical precision, and impeccable laid back relaxed atmosphere created here can not be denied, even if it lacks a sonically stronger structure and presentation. 

So, if CS&N was a super group, then CSN&Y was a super dooper group, where in the style of the times they managed to create a pretty fine collection of lasting value. Along with their lesser known members, David Crosby, who dropped out [actually he was kicked out of the nest] of The Byrds, along with Graham Nash who was dismissed from The Hollies, and Stephen Stills and Neil Young who had nowhere to go once Buffalo Springfield went down in flames, manage to not only find each other, but find the essences of each other within themselves and create an album that truly came from the heart. On that note, one must acknowledge the inconsistency of many of the songs, and also a bit of incoherency, but hey, that’s what happens when four such talented musicians are put in one place at the same time, with a single concept to be explored … and that concept was an extension of the CS&N album. Within that structure each of the four members contributed an original composition to each side of the album, and as I noted, this did belay a diversity and inconsistency. For all Deja Vu was or wasn’t, it did manage to work out well, with the songs from individuals, rather then penned as a group, stood in juxtaposition to each other in a dynamic manner, creating an sense anticipation as the album unfolded, turning these numbers into true American classics. 

Within a year of recoding Deja Vu, all four members laid down solo projects that were nicely done, with Young’s material nearly becoming the anthem and soundtrack for the generation. 

The Fun Facts: The sepia album cover was photographed in sunny California, about twenty miles northeast of San Francisco, in the city of Novato, the backyard of Crosby’s rental house. Stephen Stills opted for a Confederate Army uniform, Crosby donned a Buffalo Bill look, complete with the fringed Easy Rider suede jacket, Dallas Taylor was the gunslinger, Graham Nash came off as a sort of farmer in suspenders, Greg Reeves came across as some sort of half breed, while Neil Young looked pretty much like Neil Young. 

The photograph was actually taken using a wooden box camera with a negative glass plate, meaning that they had to remain still for as long as they could [over two minutes], and that dog, it just sort of wandered into the shot and become immortalized. 
The collage of shots on the inner gatefold were assembled by art director Gary Burden, and were taken by the photographer Henry Diltz while the band practiced at Stephen Still’s house in the Hollywood Hills, a house Stills had rented it from Peter Tork of the Monkees whom he had met while both were folksingers in Greenwich Village in the early 60’s. 
The first editions of the album were actually stamped with gold lettering….by…streetmouse …~


Thankfully the title doesn’t ring true in terms of how this relates to their first outing. It helps that yeah, Neil Young is on board but no that’s not the difference I’m talking about. No, this is instead exactly what I wanted to hear from them to begin with and my only complain would be that they didn’t do even better than this. But great is what they’ve produced! While I chalk the reputation of the debut into large parts Boomer nostalgia? This genuinely is worth respect and accolades. Given the tastes of a Boomer and/or rural music fan? I could see myself giving this higher ratings, and thus the higher respect from Boomers? I see as legit. And don’t even get it twisted or nothin’, because this is a pretty high 4 as well. What changed? Again you might be tempted to say Neil Young, in the sense of him changing their approach by being there. Well nah, not really. Frankly I’ve been struggling with being as enthused by his early solo albums just as much as the CS&N debut, the same missing element has been largely present there. Add to that the fact that apparently he wasn’t exactly sociable during the sessions, being his surly caveman looking self as usual. His songs are both pretty great, one even fantastic. But they aren’t the best here. In my ears I’m hearing Stephen Stills and ESPECIALLY David Crosby being the asskickers here. What’s changed is that they’ve managed to have some sort of fire lit under them or something, and as a result their songs are infinitely more interesting and memorable than before. They sound more like the men they were in Buffalo Springfield and the Byrds respectively, which is great news to me! I mean I think that catchy/attractive melodies aside…it’s the interesting I’ve been missing. They showed more creativity as band members, whereas the first supergroup album had them sounding more like stuffy hippie folk purists. Bleh to that. Here they cut loose with whatever little magics and passions they want to. Who knew a song about refusing to cut one’s hair could sound so anthemic and amazing? Seriously, Almost Cut My Hair is the stand out song here by a landslide. Crosby’s work, as is the psychedelic folk miasma of the title track that follows shortly. He just wins here by a country mile, with Young and Stills fighting for second place with both great contributions…though Young’s do sound very soloish even here. Where’s Graham though? The dude gives one of the greats here with the pretty “Teach Your Children”, but that said he feels very background and wimpy even next to all the rest. These songs pop with a sort of energy that had to have come from being much more involved sessions, I have to imagine they had more desperate desires going into it than the laid back porch atmosphere of the first. It’s only too bad they didn’t include Young’s “Ohio” on here, that might have punched it up to 4.5. Well that and I just don’t find much interest in the supposed generational anthem “Woodstock”. The Boomers apparently love it. But it’s melody is seriously lacking! Joni Mitchell the soon to be famed singer-songwriter provided it and I really don’t know anything about her enough to say if it’s in her style. But I don’t think it even is. Should have been swapped with Ohio, which with it’s Kent State massacre anti-Nixon theme is much more of an epic generational song to say the least. It’s too bad they didn’t reconvene for more of this, or even just the original trio, because this would be it in terms of relevant time frames. The trio would slowly fade into mediocre solo careers, while Young would roar up and down until the GRUNGE era of all things….by…Zephos ….~


In 1969 the guitarist, singers and vocalist David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash teamed up to found a super group called Crosby, Stills & Nash. Their eponymous debut album was a big success; they were able to express with their songs the feelings of a lot of Americans at the time. Stephen Stills recorded most of the instruments for this album, so the band was looking for musicians so that they could go on tour. Dallas Taylor joined the band as drummer and Greg Reeves became the bassist of the band. Also Neil Young, who used to play together with Stills in Buffalo Springfield joined the band as second lead guitarist. The band toured and the hype was huge after Neil Young joined. At the same time the band worked on new songs and recorded them. Despite the big success the band did not get along really well and most of the time the musicians worked on their own and therefore the recording sessions lasted an eternity. Luckily the bad atmosphere within the band did not affect the music on the LP, the album became a number album and was considered as the sountrack of the Woodstock generation. 

I really like the album and consider it as one of the best folk rock albums and I prefer “Déjà vu” over the previous “Crosby, Stills & Nash”, because it’s a little bit heavier and the songwriting is just perfect on this album. The first highlight is the opening “Carry On”, a rocking track written by Stills. Other highlights are “Almost Cut my Hair” and the title track “Déjà vu”, which both were written by David Crosby. “Teach Your Children” and the catchy “Our Hose” were both written by Graham Nash and are also highlights. Also the new guy, Neil Young delivered some great tunes with the classic “Helpless” and the three parted “Country Girl”. The most successful song on the album was “Woodstock”, which is a newly arranged Joni Mitchell song, also one of many highlights….by…freis …~ 


The mixture of Crosby, Stills, Nash and (arriving this album) Neil Young would ultimately prove to be too explosive to sustain itself except for very occasional reunions, but on Deja Vu the possibilities of the project reached their fruition. Like many other supergroups of the era (Emerson, Lake and Palmer springs to mine, even though they were working in a different genre) the grouping consisted of a bunch of individual egos who didn’t really blend together their songwriting styles in order to attain a distinctive group identity. Each songwriter instead retains their own artistic aesthetic and approach; the album is saved from descending into complete chaos by the way they carefully choose material which sits well next to the rest of the material on the album. 

Every song on the album is very obviously a product of an individual personality - nobody except Neil Young could have written Helpless, for instance - but each personality is aware of its role as a leading light of the counter-culture of the era and contributes to it in its own fashion, whether that involves the militancy of Almost Cut My Hair or the appeal for intergenerational understanding of Teach Your Children or the ragged, faded Americana of Helpless or Country Girl offering a different vision of America to what the establishment was selling at the time. They might have been playing at the end of the hippy era, but they played the 60s out in style….by…Warthur….~


Things could only get better! Adding Young to the line-up that produced “C.S. & N” (one of the most influential albums of 1969), proved a successful move; and although it wouldn’t last long, the synergies of those four experienced guys originated a magical vibe seldom reached by other so called “supergroups” (some like The Eagles would tread similar paths, with similar commercial success, but never with so much class and mush less vanguardism) 
What united them? Only a special gift for constructing heavenly (!) and irreprehensible vocal harmonies and (still intact in all of them at the time) writing timeless songs – amazingly, song structures can hardly get simpler than “4+20” or “Helpless” (not to mention Nash ‘s songs); and although “Our House” and “Everybody I Love you” have very few in common, the album’ s diversity also contributed to its glory; also curious is the fact that the album was self produced by the group , four individuals who overcome divergences (it wouldn’t neither last long) and agreed on the choice of songs and how they should sound, which is no small feat… 
On the other hand, Stills multi instrumentalist abilities and his embracing of several styles, Young’s gritty and economical electrical guitar approach contrasting with Stills more round and Jazzy sound on the electric songs and the use of the discreet but effective rhythm section of Dallas Taylor and Gregory Reeves (respectively drums/percussion and bass) to create a group dynamic, distanced the group’s sound from the traditional Folk or Country Rock, creating one truly of their own; 
Add to that the ethereal odd tuned 12-strings of the title track, the incisive & punchy triple guitar work of “Almost cut my Hair”, the classy Soul & Funk tinged (q.b.) mid tempo Rocker “Carry on” with its slippery organ and guitar flourishes, the powerful Rocking anthem “Everybody I Love You” so in touch with the hippie idealism of the Era or the best ever recorded (as much as I’m concerned and know) version of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” (the idealism thing also applies here), and the majestic mini-epic “Country Girl” which, with its 3 parts, rates as one of Young’s best ever songs, and you have all the ingredients that make the sole studio album of the group, a milestone of the Rock Culture !(does such a thing exists…??)…by…comusduke …~


Everything on side 1 is a classic of the highest order. “Carry On” and “Teach Your Children” are anthems of compassion and hope. “Almost Cut My Hair” tends to polarize listeners, but I’m in the “love it” camp: it has a great arrangement, trippy lead guitars, and transcendent sentiment (see below). “Helpless”, true to its title, simply blows your mind with its stark evocation of nature’s timelessness. And “Woodstock” is up there with “All Along The Watchtower” as one of the best cover versions ever. CSNY could not possibly have chosen a better song to cover at the time, nor could they have improved on how they arranged and performed it. All in all, side 1 is probably the greatest side these guys, or any permutation thereof, ever recorded. Probably in the top 50 albums sides ever. 
On side 2, “Our House” is also excellent. “4+20” isn’t bad, and of course the desperately bleak lyrics pack an emotional punch, but the song hardly ranks with anything Stills contributed to the 1969, Y-less debut. “Deja Vu” and “Country Girl” are kinda meandering, sometimes kinda interesting, but not very memorable in terms of having, like, decent melodies (cool keyboard sound on the latter, though). The side closer has a nice couple of lines in the chorus, but otherwise is a throwaway. 
What puts “Almost Cut My Hair” over the top is that Cros is going through a really rough time (his girlfriend had died in a car crash), and is being completely real about it. He’s hurting, and he knows it… but he’s “not giving in an inch to fear”. Staying true to his hippie ideals isn’t just personal: in the line that clinches the song, and perhaps the whole record, David sings “I feel like I owe it to someone”. That’s a beautiful sentiment. That, in its way, is one of the most moving declarations in '60’s music. Sure, actualizing the ideal had its problems, but what’s so funny about peace, love and understanding? The motivation is pure as sunshine, and it comes through. Hippies got some stuff right. Let history, like, not forget that…by…iso4yl…~


The only vinyl LP I ever played so many times I actually ruined the grooves and had to buy another vinyl copy. This album STILL kicks the ass of almost any other rock/folk rock/southern rock/sixties rock/classic rock album ever made. Don’t miss this just because some of the songs have been way overplayed and way over-anthemized (whatever, I know that’s not a word). Buy it and relish in the beauty of the multi-layered guitar work, the individual and group vocal work, the piano work, the incredible bass work, the attitude, the sentiment, the everything. A rock and roll “must have.”…by..rykodrix…~


A good album, but doesn’t measure up to the original thing. I like Neil Young a lot, but he doesn’t add too much to the mix. “Helpless” is a great song, in which Neil benefits from the other three singing harmony. “Country Girl” is a failed effort at a masterpiece, the life sucked out of it by ill-advised organ/synth strains. Co-written with Stills, and sung by Nash “Everybody I Love You” sounds so stupid that you’re pretty sure Nash wrote it. Nash’s contributions are the usual soft-hearted pablum that we got from the first album - “Teach Your Children” is the musical reason why people hate hippies, while “Our House” is slightly more palatable. That’s the bad news. The good news is the rest of it features the band at their best. The album features two of Crosby’s best songs ever: “Cut My Hair” which is a powerful self-searching rocker wherein the singer questions his dedication to what he believes in, backed by the cranky guitar play between Stills and Young; “Deja Vu” features wonderful guitar tones and chords which almost sounds like its being played backwards, taking one back in time, the singing is rushed in the same fashion, like a record playing backwards - thus, Deja Vu. Great time changes too on that track - a real gem. These, along with “Helpless” are my favorites on the album. Stills contributes “Carry On” which is also a great song, and “4+20” which is solid, but not spectacular. The cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock” is probably their signature song, and one of their best as well - a wonderful diary of rock n’ roll’s most important moment in American history (FYI: Joni returned the favor by doing a wonderful cover of “Helpless” at the Isle of Wight Festival around the same time). For my money, this is not as strong as their last. You can see them running short of ideas. However, the best songs are probably better (in my mind) than the best on the first album…..by…whiteyboo ….~


One of the most heartfelt and powerful musical statements of the 1960’s, this 1970 album contains many strong cuts especially “Carry On”, “Almost Cut My Hair”, “Woodstock”, and “Deja Vu”. I have never really liked “Teach Your Children” or “Our House” but they don’t detract from the solidity of this fine album. CSNY would never be as powerfully effective as they were here but precious few other artists have ever scaled the heights of musical expression this high….by…Carcass05 ….~


Favourites? “Woodstock” was one of our staple party songs in the late seventies, as Neil’s quirky, jerky lead really rocks.. for a truly excellent record collection, Joni’s original and the version here are both essential. “Carry On” didn’t blow me away instantly but gradually it really grew on me; in addition to virtually defining the classic CSNY “wooden” sound, it’s also actually quite evolving and progressive - a major track. And Grahame Nash’s “Our House”, if you can cope with the domesticity, is really quite delightful, exemplifying all that was great about the old music, with such a complete sound made up of a mere bass, drums and piano. 
Neil’s songs are not my favourite part of the album, being more laid-back country with the slide guitar, and not up to the the standard of “After The Goldrush” in my opinion. Not bad though, as are Dave Crosby’s contributions. And for any freaks who might consider CSNY a bit lightweight, the most mysterious and esoteric part of the album, which a casual observer might even miss, is Steve Stills’ dark confessions of the struggle with the hippie demons in “4 & 20”. Taken as a whole, “Deja Vu” is a historic, groovy moment, and certainly one of the classics. …by….SandyMc ….~


This album for me is the very definition of classic rock. It was made by legendary rock artists at the peak of peace, love and rock and roll around the time of Woodstock at which the group also performed. The songs contained protest, psychedelia, quiet desperation and celebration. The harmonies are unforgettable. I know for me and maybe for some others, Neil Young was really put on the map with the release of this album and his appearance with the group at Woodstock. Yeah, I know he was a member of Buffalo Springfield but his name didn’t jump out at me before. It was after this that Neil really took off as a solo artist. This is not a concept album nor one where they tried to put together songs that worked together. I think all the members of the group were vying for attention so to speak so they had their songs slotted in to grab a share of the glory. But it worked none-the-less….by…..jambalaya….~


CSN had troubles bringing their songs to the stage. They needed a fourth member: Neil Young wasn’t exactly the partner Stephen Stills had hoped for, but he wouldn’t regret it (at least not for long). Their guitar duels in their Buffalo Springfield days have always been a highlight, and it would certainly work again in CSN&Y. Young’s arrival doesn’t mean all eyes should be on him only. In my opinion, the best songs on “Deja Vu” are by Crosby, Stills & Nash. 

Graham Nash deilvers the soft pop songs that became the album’s greatest hits: the folky 'Teach Your Children’ and the sweet 'Our House’. Young’s classic 'Helpless’ is one of his best known compositions, and the beautiful 'Country Girl’ has an amazing variety of melody and orchestrations. Crosby’s 'Deja Vu’ is a strange track, but very effective with CSN’s harmonies shining through nicely. His other composition, 'Almost Cut My Hair’ has one of the greatest vocal performances of all time. Definitely one of the album’s highlights. While Crosby gives away outstanding vocals, Stills and Young bring in chilling guitar parts… and it was all recorded in just one take (!). Stills repeats the majesty of CSN’s 'Suite: Judy Blue Eyes’ with 'Carry On’, which opens the album - and also reworks his Buffalo Springfield song 'Questions’. '4+20’ is one of Stills’ finest efforts of all time. When Stills plays acoustic, you always know you’re in for a treat. '4+ 20’ is also my favorite song on the album (check out those lyrics!). Finally, there’s the amazing cover of Joni Mitchell’s 'Woodstock’ - with a terrific Stills vocal, accompanied by Stills & Young blasting away with their guitars - and the album’s closing track 'Everybody I Love You’, a Stills and Young collaboration - a sort of sequel to 'Carry On’. “Deja Vu” remains one of the best albums ever made, even after all these years. If this is not in anyone’s classic albums collection, I consider it an incomplete collection… by…..queenfan….~


For some reason I always had this idea that I would hate Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and I have no idea where it came from. I’d never really even heard their music. Maybe I disliked their image as folk-hippies, or maybe I had a problem with their fanbase. Who knows? Luckily I was turned onto Neil Young’s solo output by a few friends, and spotting this in my father’s collection, I figured, “What the heck? Why not give it a shot?” I’m very glad I did. Deja Vu is extremely solid folk rock with plenty of variety thanks to its four songwriters. It also has fantastic harmonies, but you kind of have to expect that with four great singers involved. Young’s contributions are definitely amongst the very best. Helpless is one of his most memorable songs, and Country Girl is epic. To my surprise though, there were plenty of other enjoyable songs here. Teach Your Children is a very enjoyable, if slightly cheesy, country tune, and Our House is very nice, sounding a bit Beatleseque. Surprisingly there’s a few songs that even rock pretty hard like Almost Cut My hair and Woodstock. Deja Vu is another favorite of mine and has probably the best harmonies and guitars on the album. There’s really not a weak moment on the album, and its inspired me to look into other related groups like The Byrds and The Hollies, which are also very enjoyable. So, I guess the moral of this story/review is that everything deserves a chance before being written off, and this is one album that you definitely shoudln’t write off….by…Kid_Brian_A …..~ 


Supergroups have often enough failed to actually live up to their name. Seemingly cursed with a short lifespan and incoherent collaborative skills, both those of new and old didn’t quite turn out to be the sum of their parts, in most cases. To say Crosby, Stills & Nash (better remembered as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Neil Young being the occasional fourth member) were an exception isn’t true. CSNY created quite some gems, and almost always cited as their greatest achievement is Deja Vu, their second, and the first time Young joined the trio. 
These four musicians found each other because they were put out of their respective groups around the same time. David Crosby got kicked out of The Byrds, Graham Nash was fired from The Hollies, and Stephen Stills and Neil Young had no group in particular to go to after Buffalo Springfield dissolved. Unfortunate is the fact that they never really wrote as a group; each member would somewhat equally contribute their individual pennings. Gifted musicians as they are, this approach to writing led to incoherency and inconsistency, also apparent on Deja Vu. 
Nash’ contributions are quite easily the weakest and most dated: the country-tinged Teach Your Children and almost childish Our House don’t give the album most of its credit, even though they are some of the group’s best-known songs. Newcomer Young created some of the finer moments here, for Helpless and Country Girl are two classic CSNY tunes with some great piano work. More beauty is to be found in the title track and the harmony-focused Carry On, but those boys didn’t forget to rock. Crosby’s Almost Cut My Hair is an electrifying ode to the famous hippie attitude, and, of course, hairstyle. Fitting with this theme is of course Woodstock, penned by Joni Mitchell who didn’t make the festival in the summer of ’69. Still as a trio, Crosby, Stills & Nash performed their second gig there. 
Young would not do a full album with Crosby, Stills & Nash until the late 80’s, and given that it’s no surprise Deja Vu is always mentioned as the group’s quintessential record. It could have been more consistent in style or collaborative as a whole, but as it is, there are some pretty damn good tunes on here. Maybe Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young didn’t write together well, at least they played together well. It’s all that Deja Vu seems to need to work…. by Nagrarok …sputnik…~


This really is a timeless classic. The second album from Crosby, Stills and Nash added the talents of Neil Young to the mix and came up with something that transcends the era it was made in thanks to beautiful close harmonies, sharing solo vocal duties around and peerless musicianship. Pretty much every track here stands as a testament to the fine interplay between the quartet, with excellent backup from Dallas Taylor and Greg Reeves. So much here are tracks that embellish the C, S, N, Y legend and left the public clamouring for more. Every arrangement gives the impression of being honed and polished to perfection. The template for AOR is right here, influencing many groups that followed such as Eagles and the classic version of Fleetwood Mac to name just two major groups who owe a debt of gratitude to what was set out here. Witness opener Carry On, which effortlessly interweaves harmonies and sets out the album’s raison d'etre immediately. The very lovely Teach Your Children follows, and whilst the sentiments may flow from the hippie era the song itself is much more than that. The introduction of Young adds a new piece to the jigsaw with Helpless an acknowledged Young classic, although I feel Country Girl almost but not quite eclipses it. This is a fabulous album that has stood the test of time. Whilst born at the tail end of the hippie era and indeed giving nods towards it in the shape of Joni Mitchell cover Woodstock, and the track most pinned in the era Almost Cut My Hair (actually a protest song) it’s much more than that. Along with debut album Crosby, Stills and Nash one of the two essential purchases by this group…by DJF…~


Upon returning from catching Neil Young live in a Kentish field, a young Turk of my acquaintance, hot for info on his new-found hero, recently asked me “…who were the other three people in Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young?” 
The question was delivered with no hint of irony whatsoever. After rolling my eyes skywards, I attempted to deliver potted histories of The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, The Hollies and how these disparate artists discovered the magic of their unique harmonizing when Salfordian upstart Graham Nash muscled his way into a practice, reputedly at the house of Steven Stills (although reports vary). Along the way I mentioned Woodstock, of course and the manner in which CSN and Y became more mothership, than band; a place where their respective talents could settle, integrate, revamp. 
The apparent democracy of peak-time CSN and Y seemed to astonish my friend as I sent him scuttling off in search of Déjà vu and the foursome’s last live recording, the sprawling Four Way Street, recorded when the gravitas was more or less evenly spread. 
I suppose I shouldn’t have been so surprised by this. The dominance of Neil Young within the context of CSN and Y has never seemed so unbalanced. Confirmation of that fact arrives with CSNY/Deja Vu Live, recorded on the Freedom of Speech Tour in 2006 and the soundtrack to the subsequent film. 
The title is immediately misleading and, at first glance, suggests that this will be a down-the-line run through of the band’s classic Déjà vu album and, given the current elevated status of all things Americana, this would surely be understandable. It was Neil Young, however, who preferred to use the power of a CSN and Y reunion to bolster his profound anti-Bush feelings (which are undoubtedly shared by the others) and the refreshing open protest of his Living With War album. As such, Deja Vu Live is effectively Living With War Live, the album supplemented by familiar contributions from Crosby (Deja Vu), Nash (Teach Your Children) and the Stills penned Buffalo Springfield classic, ‘For What It’s Worth’). Only the inclusion of the surging, still-captivating ‘Wooden Ships’ (credited to Crosby, Stills and Jefferson Airplane’s Paul Kantner) truly seems to capture the balance of a band of equals. That stated, Crosby and Nash do pitch in with themic titles such as the opening ‘What Are Their Names’ and Nash’s paranoiac ‘Military Madness’ 
There are, of course, two ways of looking at this. Misty eyed nostalgics, of which I am one, will undoubtedly feel a twinge of disappointment upon scanning a set list so heavily weighted towards Living With War. The paradox is that to move CSN and Y into the contemporary era, and particularly with such political intent, is surely closer to the spirit of the band who charmed the vast audience of Woodstock (live, in the cinema and on record) with such an astonishingly complex rendition of ‘Suite; Judy Blue Eyes’. Returning to ‘Four Way Street’ may be a better way of rediscovering that magic. In addition - and young bands take note - these are four musicians who have always shown a commendable tendency to air their views, see the dark sweetness of Young’s ‘Ohio’ as a perfect example. 
Also, of course, a softened fattened-out, lumped ‘greatest hits’ tour would ultimately only serve to weaken the legacy. 
As such, we should welcome the immediacy of Living With War, which was never a bad album. Proof of that lies in the songs here, augmented by the still-nerve tingling vocal contributions of the others and, in parts, a 100 string choir. The opening and aforementioned ‘What Are Their Names?’ immediately encouraging audience participation with scant instrumentation before fading into the disarming, lilting beauty of the ‘Living With War -Theme’, which is later reprised to haunting effect. 
While no bad songs clutter Living With War, they do occasionally display a clunky-feel not at all associated with Young’s finer work, even on latterday albums. This is largely due, one suspects, due to Young’s desire to punch his strength of feeling across. You wouldn’t really expect a song called ‘Shock and Awe’ to drift sweetly around the treetops, would you? 
What isn’t so apparent on this soundtrack, but evidently surfaces on the film, is the curious notion of a divided audience. Not all long-term CSN and Young devotees, it seems, are so forthcoming in their anti-war allegiances. That stated, and it may be my imagination, but there does seem to be a slight hesitation - a tension even - between the songs. Perhaps no bad thing. Blind adoration, as we have seen many times, can be a dangerously naive beast. Nevertheless, there will be no disturbing Dixie Chicks style backlash in this instance. 
But the ultimate test here remains in that schizophrenic balance of new and old and it’s almost a relief to note that the endearing freshness on this album is largely to be found within the older songs. As such, ‘Wooden Ships’, ‘Teach Your Children’ and ‘For What It’s Worth’ remains unchallenged, and gloriously so. Bearing that in mind, this is an album that superbly complements the legacy. It does not work, however, as an introduction to four extraordinary talents….by….Mick Middles…~




Since their debut in the late '60s, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young have functioned as the “town criers” of their generation. With songs like “Ohio” and “Find the Cost of Freedom,” CSNY were in the forefront of Vietnam-era protest and anti-war sentiment. Though fondly remembered for their harmonies and love songs, the band has never lost its political edge. “CSNY: Déjà Vu” finds the band heading out on their “Freedom of Speech 2006” of North America, featuring music from Neil Young’s controversial “Living With War” CD. With “Embedded” reporter, Mike Cerre, aboard, the film documents audience reactions to the music and the band’s ongoing connection with its fans, all against the backdrop of the Iraq/Afghanistan War. The film also examines events surrounding the tour in the crucial election season of 2006. Songs from the tour are woven together with archival material, news footage, and audience reaction and observations, as the film examines the issues surrounding the integration of politics and art….~














David Crosby – Guitars, Vocals 
Stephen Stills – Guitars, Keyboards, Bass, Vocals 
Graham Nash – Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals 
Neil Young – Guitars, Keyboards, Harmonica, Vocals 
Greg Reeves – Bass 
Dallas Taylor – Drums 







Tracklist 
A1 Carry On 4:25 
A2 Teach Your Children 2:53 
A3 Almost Cut My Hair 4:25 
A4 Helpless 3:30 
A5 Woodstock 3:52 
B1 Déjà Vu 4:10 
B2 Our House 2:59 
B3 4 + 20 1:55 
Country Girl (5:05) 
B4a Whiskey Boot Hill
B4b Down, Down, Down
B4c “Country Girl” (I Think You’re Pretty)
B5 Everybody I Love You 2:20 

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