Neil Young - On the Beach

On the Beach is a rock album by Neil Young, released in 1974. The title track and front cover imply a post-apocalyptic vision of the world which could well be inspired by the novel and movie On the Beach.

Recorded after but released before the harrowing Tonight's the Night, On the Beach shared some of that album’s bleakness and crude production –- which came as a shock to fans and critics alike as this was the long-awaited studio follow-up to the commercially-oriented HarvestRolling Stone review described it as “one of the most despairing albums of the decade”, later critics such as AMG’s William Ruhulmann used the benefit of hindsight to conclude that “[Young] was saying goodbye to despair, not being overwhelmed by it”. The despair of "Tonight's the Night," communicated through intentional underproduction and lyrical pessimism, gives way to a more polished album that is still pessimistic but not so much so. Much like Tonight's the Night, On the Beach was not much of a commercial success at the time of its release, but over the years has come attain both a cult following and high critical regard. album -- but also included hints pointing towards a more subtle outlook, particularly opener “Walk On,” in which Young combines his cynical outlook with a touch of closure and a wish to move on and keep living. While the original

For nearly two decades, On the Beach notably headed the list of most-desired albums not released on CD. Along with three other mid-period Young albums, it had been withheld from re-release until 2003; the reasons remain murky but there is some evidence that Young himself didn’t want the albums out on CD, variously citing “fidelity problems” and legal issues. Beginning in 2000, over 5000 fans signed an on-line petition calling for the release of the album on CD; this wish was finally granted in 2003.


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