Monday, April 24, 2006
LOS ANGELES, (Reuters): Neil Young's newly recorded protest album Living With War, including a song calling for the impeachment of US President George W Bush, will be posted for free Internet streaming next week, his label said yesterday.
Starting April 28, fans can log onto Young's Web site, www.neilyoung.com, and listen to the 10-track collection in its entirety, free of charge, said Bill Bentley, a spokesman for Warner Music Group's Reprise Records.
The album will first become commercially available as a digital download beginning May 2, ''and we plan to get it into retail stores as soon after that as we can get them manufactured,'' Bentley said.
He said the label anticipates getting the album into retail outlets between May 5 and May 15. ''Neil wants this album out there as soon as possible,'' Bentley added.
The Canadian-born Young, 60, who has tackled social and political themes through four decades as a singer-songwriter, wrote and recorded his latest studio offering over a two-week period this month, backed by a 100-member choir, according to his longtime manager, Elliot Roberts.
Much of the album conveys a sense of outrage, vowing repeatedly in the title track ''to never kill again,'' mocking Bush's conduct of the Iraq war in ''Shock and Awe'' and calling for his removal from office in a provocative song titled ''Let's Impeach the President.'' The album also strikes a chord of empathy with soldiers separated from their families, and features lyrics ridiculing America's consumer culture, political corruption and religious fundamentalism.
Juxtaposed to ''Let's Impeach the President'' is one of the album's more hopeful selections, ''Lookin' for a Leader,'' with such lyrics as: ''Someone walks among us ... and I hope he hears the call. And maybe it's a woman, or a black man after all.'' The album closes with an a capella version of ''America the Beautiful.'' Young, who voiced support for Bush's efforts to expand law-enforcement powers in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, acknowledged in published remarks yesterday the provocative nature of his latest work.
''You're always going to rub someone the wrong way when you sing, 'let's impeach the president,''' he told the Los Angeles Times.
''But that's what this country's all about -- being able to express your views.'' Young's new set comes just seven months after the release of his last album, ''Prairie Wind,'' which has sold about 450,000 US copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.