Warners - 1974 - 39 minutes

Out of reach for over two decades, the impact of Young's troubled masterpiece has not been dulled by the mythology, piled on a yearly basis, around it. The middle album in his 'Doom Trilogy' ('Time Fades Away' and Tonight's the Night' being the others), '...Beach' finds Young standing defiant as the trumpets fade on 60's idealism and was recorded following the deaths of Crazy horse guitarist Danny Whitten and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young roadie Bruce Berry.

The abrupt start of wistful opener 'Walk On' makes you feel like you've stumbled in on a confession and one that proves impossible to walk away from as the record progresses. Alongside the ferocious lyric "I hate them worse than lepers and I kill them in their cars" ('Revolution Blues') and the malevolent chug of 'Vampire Blues' hangs the worn down-but-not-out beauty of 'For the Turnstiles' and the title track. Eclipsing all of them, however, is 'Motion Pictures', seven-minutes of strumming that goes by way too quick and is powered by the possibility of starting all over again. That feeling finds companionship when the album then closes as it opened with Young looking at another snapshot of days gone and deciding to keep on keeping on.

"It's easy to get buried in the past," he sings on 'Ambulance Blues'. No argument there, but here you'll dig yourself in over and over again.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Walk On - See the Sky About to Rain - Revolution Blues - For the Turnstiles - Vampire Blues - On the Beach - Motion Pictures - Ambulance Blues