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Less than a year after the release of CSN's groundbreaking debut, the group returned with Stephen Stills's former Buffalo Springfield cohort/rival Neil Young augmenting the threesome. The result is a less concentrated but more kinetic creation; Young swims through the celestial harmonies of rock's best barbershop trio like a fly in consomm¨¦. While somewhat dated ("Almost Cut My Hair"? Wait a while, David, it'll fall out), Deju Vu is teeming with early '70s FM staples, including "Helpless," "Teach Your Children," and "Our House." --Steven Stolder
- Living in the past
There are two "must haves" for me as a C.S.N.&Y. fan: this and Suite Judy Blue Eyes. ...more info
- CSNY's pinnacle!
This was CSNY's finest work. It went all the way to number 1 on the US album chart and produced three hit singles: "Woodstock", "Teach Your Children", and "Our House". Every song on the album saw at least some airplay on FM stations that played album cuts and many are still played on classic rock stations. Songs like "Carry On", "Almost Cut My Hair", and "D¨¦j¨¤ vu" have become classics. This was CSNY's first and unfortunately their last effort as a real group. After this seminal work, they let egos get in the way of future efforts and really ceased to be a cohesive group. Instead the became solo artists that would get together once or twice a decade to do some recording and make some money. This album makes me wish for what might have been had egos not gotten in the way. ...more info
- Melded their talents and egos to create a classic
D¨¦j¨¤ vu is not a recording I listen to regularly anymore. But when I do play this album, I do listen. It's full of crisp details: the guitar strings vibrating, unexpected percussion, layers of vocal harmonies, the sudden energy of a wailing guitar. (And if you only own a CD version, it's worth finding a vinyl copy to appreciate the excellently crafted packaging and artwork.)
Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young melded their talents and egos to create a classic, a recording that is infused with the culture and angst of the time yet still grounded in common themes that resonant well now. D¨¦j¨¤ vu is a very balanced album allowing the band members space to showcase their own talents and to come together sounding very much like a cohesive band. Each member takes the lead on some songs and burnishes them with his own characteristics--yet there is no real jolt or letdown despite how different one song is from the next.
In listened again, I'm convinced that the supporting rhythm section of Dallas Taylor on percussion and Greg Reeves on bass never have gotten full credit for both their excellent work and their contributions to the overall tightness of the sound. Despite the title "D¨¦j¨¤ vu," CSN&Y never again collectively reached the heights they achieved on this great recording.
- Always my favorite
Deja Vu was the first CSNY record i recieved and the first of all of my records that I completely fell in love with. It was a gateway album into a whole new genre of music, and though it is not the first of the great rock super-group, it led me into exploring all the other albums of CSN, CSNY, all the individual members , groups that they came from and groups with similar sounds. But no matter what, this group of four incredibly talented musicians have a sound unlike any other that cannot be measured up to. First of all the group is perfect with just its mix of four able to be lead voices singing so strong alone and then together with beautiful and moving harmonies and sounds. But then take that and add groovy full fledged feeling guitars and keys, poetic and beautifully written lyrics, and drums and bass from greg reeves and dallas taylor, and its a group that is so solid and together and this is an incredibly solid and awesome album that i love and will never get tired of. If I had to have only one cd, this would be the one. Though some of the songs are mentioned more often than others, the greatest songs i feel are Carry On with its variety of sound and and changes and thier kick-ass version of Joni Mitchell's Woodstock. But this album just has such a variety of songs and sounds from the rockin guitar and vocals of Almost Cut My Hair, the songs with that sound that only Graham Nash has like Our House, Neil Youngs more mellow tunes with beautifullly written lyrics like Helpless, and the groovy and thoughtful Teach Your Children. The album ends on a great note with Nash and Stills' Everybody I Love You. The whole album is great from start to finish. All of the songs are perfectly written and the sounds just bring you right back to Woodstock and the music of the time. I love every single song on this album but I really can't give the ambum justice from writing a review, so all I can say is to get it! And then be sure to get the first(before Neil Young joined) and then get them all! Dig it...more info
- "American Beatles", huh?
As a musician and classic rock nut, there are very few albums I have heard where I sat listening waiting for the thing to end (I stuck it out hoping it would get better..."Tommy", for example) but "Deja Vu" was one of them. I loved the first CSN album; played it till my girlfriend threatened to hide it on me...as a Neil Young fan I thought I'd be getting the best of both worlds here. Not so..."Helpless" belongs on "After The Gold Rush" while "Country Girl" doesn't even bear discussion, though "Country Girl" is as representative of my problems with this album as anything: overblown, overproduced and pretentious to the max. Big time success went to these guy's heads a little too much, I think. They seemed to take the Beatles comparisons too literally: look at "Our House". It was annoying used in a commercial some years back and just as annoying on "Deja Vu". "Teach Your Children" is overplayed on classic rock radio; the song seems to be blatantly pandering to country-rock. "4+20" makes you wonder why, if Stills was so depressed at the time, he didn't just finish the job? "Woodstock"? I hope Joni Mitchell changed her tune about that song after Woodstock '99. So much for the garden...For me, probably "Carry On", the dueling guitars on "Almost Cut My Hair" and the bass solo on "Deja Vu" are the best things this album has to offer. All I really hear is the arrogant overambitiousness that is a result of cocaine overindulgence. "Frozen Noses" indeed, as one critic or another dubbed CSN....more info
- Essential Cd and Great Songs
I wasn't around when this cd came out in 1970. Even so, it has become one of my favorite albums. It contains several classic songs such as :Carry On," "Teach Your Children," and "Woodstock." Some of the others are ones that CSNY isn't as well known for, but they're still very popular.
The albums begins iwth "Carry On." This is a song I'vfe beena fan of for quite awhile. It's a very well written song ig. It contains great lyrics, great electric guitar work, and great harmonies. But those guys are known for their harmonies anyway. The next song, "Teach Your Children" was written by Graham Nash, and it's about how parents and their children should try to understand each other. Like "Carry On," "4 + 20" is another song writtten by Stephen Stills. It's aunacoustic, autobiagraphical song with a nice melody. Along with "Teach Your Children," "Our House" was another song on the album written by Graham Nash for Jonie Mitchell, . Since the album, the song has become a classic. David Crosby penned a couple songs on the album "Deja Vu," the title track, and "Almost Cut My Hair." For some reason, I crack up when I hear this song. "Almost Cut My Hair" is more of a rock song, while "Deja vu" is a song that also has great vocal harmonies. Neil Young wrote "Country Girl..." "Helpless" and he also co-wrote "Everybody I Love You" with Stephen Stills. The first song has a great melody, and good lyrics. "Helpless" is an acoustic number, and I'm a huge fan of this song. It's a very reflective song with a great melody and great lyrics. "Everybody I Love You" is a rock song with more good harmonies.
In the midst of all this, it's hard to believe that these guys had time to record someone elses song. "Woodstock" was originally written by Jonie Mitchell about the legendary music festival that took place in upstate New York. Her version is a piano-based piece, while CSNnY's is an up-tempo rock song. CSnY's is the most popular version. This album is a classic of it's era, and it's definitely worth buying. This album is fool of great songs, and it showcases lots of talent....more info
- Life Changing album
Lots of people below me have written what I would probably say, give or take, it's just all pure heart and art...... but what happened to the Needle and the Damaged Arm? That's on my original album that I have had since way back, since i was 16 and lets just say it's several decades after that time and it's no longer part of the album or DVD? Where did it go? It was the song prior to Country Girl. ...more info
- Are you guys still on drugs?
My 14 year-old kid got a turntable for Christmas. A friend of his gave him this LP. I haven't heard it in, maybe, 28 years. This album is horrible!
Davis Crosby is a no talent. Neil Young can't sing. Stephen Stills can't get over himself. Leaving poor semi-talented Graham Nas to carry the show.
As Rolling Stone magazine said at the time, Joni Mitchell wrote the best song on the album....more info
- Crosby: Almost passed up a buffet
This is a great album. It captures better than any other the self absorption of the hippy element. These guys are like the Beach Boys - great albums, out of tune live. They were very into themselves and very self-important. ...more info
- One of the best Rock n Roll albums ever recorded
If you aren't just carried away by Carry On, well, then you just don't get the genius of CSN&Y. Every time I play this CD I'm transported back to 1969-70, when we boomers were still young, idealistic, and didn't even realize that the music we were blessed with was the best of the century. This is a great example....more info
- An essential album for any collector
When this album came out, I was 16 years old. I played it till it had little scratches on it and my father begged for mercy. I was afraid that the pristine quality of CD reproduction would remove the "character" but happily, it didn't. The clear harmonies came through just as they always did, the steel guitar of Jerry Garcia on "Teach your Children" and the wailing vocal of Neil Young still shine as brightly as ever. Only song which hasn't really stood the test of time is "Almost cut my Hair"...more info
- voices of a unique moment in history
From the vantage point of the aughts, it is easier than ever to define the near-magical qualities of this album. It is also easy, at least for me, to face the fact that it is far from perfect. Deja Vu has its fair share of clunkers. CS&N's first album was not perfect either, but it came so close to perfection that criticism would be merely petty. Deja Vu, however, was more of a mixed bag: Teach Your Children is a suprisingly, almost shockingly schlocky top-40 material that seems designed to bridge the ol' generation gap and get the pouty youths and wise papas and mamas to love each other and hug a lot; worse is Our House, Graham's syrupy bid for middle-class pleasures. Carefully crafted with imagery straight from Hallmark cards, it could appeal to pretty much anyone on the planet, especially if they were in the throes of a first "serious" coupling, looking forward to babies and the picket fence. The fact that it was written by someone whose vision of a cozy house was drastically different - several million dollars different - than that of your basic working stiffs, didn't seem to bother anyone, and these sucrose songs were both tremendous radio fodder and huge hits. Graham Nash had a gift for what was essentially teenybopper music, and, in retrospect, one must wonder what attracted the other three to him. Then there's Helpless. I confess I've always disliked this song because it's so awfully simple - the same three chords again and again; it seemed to me that a self-respecting musician shouldn't write something that was no more than a continuous hook. As if to counter this argument, Neil also wrote Country Girl, which is the other extreme: pompous, bloated, so overproduced that it probably made Phil Spector whimper in his dreams. And how about those lyrics: "...no pass out sign on the door set me thinking, are waitresses paying the price for the their winking...?" Yes, Neil, those words rhyme, now stop taking the crystals, you're really losing it. I am not enamored of what the guys did with Mitchell's Woodstock, either: a nice rocker, sure, but the chill that this song carries in Mitchell's ultra-sophisticated version is completely gone. And finally, Everybody I Love You is a mush of sound, a sort of a meaningless good-time improv that musicians of this caliber could probably come up with accidentally at any moment during rehearsals, just goofing around in the studio.
So, with all this, why still 5 stars? Do the few remaining songs really deserve such high praise just for themselves? Yes, they do. They embody qualities that seem to be entirely lost in the way that rock music is written today, whether good or bad. There is the unmatched melodic invention: it is supported by impeccable musicianship, Crosby's unique harmonic gifts, and exceptional vocal harmonies (there, I've killed three adjectives in one sentence, but they're well deserved). Secondly, there is the depth of imagination, and the sheer beauty to which imagery is attached: you don't have hooks per se, you just float along on entire songs that are stuctured so that no section can be separated from the others, even though, interestingly, several songs are put together of different parts composed in different keys or tempos. Thirdly, there is fearless artistic exploration. When did you last hear something so out of left field for its era as these songs were for theirs? Yep, there's Country Girl again: it may have been over the top, but what an experiment! Compare it with the nasally-monotone rubbish of almost anything that hits top 40 today and find an ounce of the same originality, introspection, lunacy, or vision. How about the gorgeous weirdness of the song Deja Vu itself, or the straight-out rock of Carry On, or the anthemic (yet not in the least arena-pretentious) Almost Cut My Hair - I have little of said item left, yet whenever I hear the song, I still feel like letting my freak flag fly. You can contrast that with the lesson in meaningful simplicity that is 4+20: a small folk memento that says so much in just two minutes, with one acoustic guitar. And, folks, this was all done, for the most part, with two guitars, a bass, a drum, a keyboard, and just a bit of singing... The harmonica counted as a special effect, as did the echo chamber. It didn't go much farther than that (yes, okay, Neil invited about four philharmonic orchestras to Country Girl).
You think I've run out of cliches, but wait, I have one more: they just don't make them like this anymore. Ten stars wouldn't be enough.
oh, a p.s.: i'm not really concerned with remastering. Some of it is merely expanding the dynamics and compressing them at the tips, meaning that you can get louder without distortion, and a lot of it is plain baloney. I heard the bass clearly on vinyl, the harmonies were clear too, thank you, I have no hearing problem, I'll pay attention to the remastering some other time. ...more info
- ONE OF THE BEST ALBUMS EVER!!!
I had been a big fan of Crosby, Stills and Nash's first, self entitled album, so I decided to give "Deja Vu" a try. Boy, I wasn't dissappointed. "Deja Vu" is far superior to "Crosby, Stills and Nash" mostly due the introduction of Neil Young and his blistering electric guitar. The first album had a little too much acoustics and not enough rock and roll. This album sure does provide some great rocking tracks.
Lets start from the beginning. "Deja Vu" kicks off with "Carry On" on amazing up-beat track that really gets the blood pumping. The rythm guitar is really pleasaent in the foreground, but the real beauty is in Neil Young's backround guitar: he really can do wonders. Be sure to listen for that. Also, the harmonies on this track are great (like all CSNY songs).
Personally I feel that the song "Teach Your Children" is decent but nothing special. It's just a little to sweet and childish for my taste. But soon after we get David Crosby's "Almost Cut My Hair". This song really shows off Crosby's raw and natural voice. Great.
We then have "Helpless" which is a good Neil Young song, and although his voice isn't "classicaly good", its still extremely emotional and touxhing. Then comes "Woodstock" which is absolutely great. Written by Joni Mitchel, it isnt a CSNY original but hey: it happens to be one their best songs.
"Deja Vu" is another David Crosby work, and a good one at that. I like the beginning section with the strange time signature more then the rest of the song. Next, Nash's masterpiece "Our House" which is a great sing along tune.
"4 + 20" is a lovely Stephen Stills song, but one of the weaker tracks on the album. "Country Girl" is another Neil Young track and this is amazing. The lyrics are like poetry and also have meaning (because I know poetry that doesn't mean diddly squat) along with some first class music. The best part of the song, and possibly the entire album, is when it crescendos to a pinnacle of sound, and Neil Young pours his heart out his "country girl".
The last track is a Stills/Young collaboration, "Everybody I Love You" and has a tremendous guitar.
Overall, "Deja Vu" is a fabulous album, that goes in the record books as one of the greatest albums of all time, along with The Beatles' "Abbey Road" and Pink floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon"....more info
- THE HIPPIE ANTHEM !
Some albums are remembered as much for the impact they had on people's lives, as they are for the great music on them. Deja Vu (1970) is one such album. Oh yeah, the music here is great, but this was the album that called to people living in suburbia to join the "hippie movement". Before this, you had to "tune in, drop out" and move to California, take part in anti-war protests, or wade around naked in a lake while tripping on acid (all fun, but a little too far out for some). This album spoke to people who were raising kids, working jobs, and paying mortgages. "Carry On", "Almost Cut My Hair", "Everybody I Love You", and Joni Mitchell's "Woodstock" are all hippie call-to-arms, while "Teach Your Children" and "Our House" give the album a warm, domesticated, family atmosphere. The Neil Young contributions, Helpless(chosen by Young to be on his greatest hits album) and "Country Girl" are some of the best of his career, as are the songs by the other three. Other than Stephen Stills solo 4+20, these songs are all group efforts, with contributions by all four members on each one (Jerry Garcia stops by to play the pedal steel guitar on Teach Your Children). The three standouts are the songs that most people know, "Woodstock", "Helpless", and "Teach Your Children", but every song on this album is a classic. And don't worry, listening to this won't turn you into "One of those long haired, dope smoking hippie freaks" (remember that?), but you might look at the world in a different way for a little while. ...more info
- Their 2nd classic album
Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young avoided the dreaded sophomore jinx with their second album Deja Vu. The album is a more diverse affair than their debut thanks in no small part to the addition of Neil Young. Deja Vu is a more electric album as well with the addition of more bass and lead guitar. The album contains less harmonies than the debut but are still plentiful and very well done.
All four members bring strong contributions to the fold with Crosby and Stills's songs being slightly weaker than on Crosby, Stills, & Nash. Crosby contributes "Deja Vu" and "Almost Cut My Hair." The former track is very strong and one of the more eclectic tracks they've ever produced. The latter track is a druggy electric track with Crosby singing in a louder tone and Neil Young's outro solo sounding reminiscent of his work with Crazy Horse. Stills contributes the very strong opening track "Carry On" and the melancholy but powerful acoustic track "4+20." Both very strong songs, but not as definitive as the tracks on their first album. Graham Nash's songs, however, are very strong. "Teach Your Children" and "Our House" were both big hits and it's easy to see why. The former has a country feel with excellent lyrics, melody, and harmonies. The latter is a piano driven track with both a great hook and melody. Neil Young's contributions "Helpless" and the three-song suite "Country Girl" are both solid mid-tempo tracks and contain very strong harmonies. Stills & Young's closing track "Everybody I Love You" is also very strong, sounding like something they would have done with Buffalo Springfield but rocks harder. Last but not least there is an excellent version of Joni Mitchell's "Woodstock" which rocks much harder than the original. An excellent album and along with their debut is highly recommended....more info
- One of the BEST albums in Music History
This is one of the BEST album of all time to come out of the 60s. It was a time of Woodstock and the Hippie Generation. Most conservatives misunderstood the renegade nature of the 60 generation flower children. But, some of the best songs and lyrics came out of that generation. One of these is Crosby,Stills, Nash & Young's 'D¨¨j¨¢ Vu.' I remember I was just a school kid and a relative whose family member loved their music got me the album as a surprise gift. This was my first album of the band. Let me tell you I was really amazed with their gentle melodies and outstanding, meaningful lyrics. Take it from a kid who didn't know much about geometry or geography. but I do know what good lyrics are.
The band is made up of David Crosby, Graham Nash, Stephen Stills and Neil Young. This is their second groundbreaking album. Their success from the CSN album brought them back for an unforgettable creation of songs that still keep going stronger today then ever. Combined with the greatest acoustic work and rare talent, 'D¨¨j¨¢ Vu' should be one of the top 10 albums of all time, next to the Beatles' 'Abbey Road.' It brings back a time where everything was trendy and folksy. You think of Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez. These guys [Crosby gang] are more mellow and celestial in harmony. It also features Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead on two of the songs, 'Teach the Children' and 'Our House.' 'Carry On' is acoustically defined as a classic. 'Teach the Children' with really super fine acoustic melody teaches parents to teach your children well. Kind of like a hero song. 'Almost Cut my Hair,' an anthem to a humour side of the 'hippy' days. When you look at David Crosby now. Maybe he should change it to, 'Glad I Didn't Cut my Hair!' :). Neil Young's 'Helpless' really does the flashy rock guitar work on this number. 'Woodstock' is a tribute song to that era in history of the way rock music created a generation. The title track, 'D¨¨j¨¢ Vu' lyrics are something close to philosophical. 'Our House' a sweet gentle ballad that could be a standard classic as an American folk song. 4+20 is a beautiful love ballad. 'Country Girl' another Young's number seems to stand alone from the Crosby-Stills-Nash lyrics and has more of the rock edge. 'Everybody I Love You' like '4+20' should be appreicated as the other hits on the album. With at least 7 of the 10 make up a really great album. After all those years it's still something worth listening to. It's just a kind of album that will probably never come our way again....more info
- David Crosby's voice, Stills, Nash and Young's harmonies
A Truly lovely album however you are feeling at the time, because it is about the 'beautiful things, peace, love and harmony.
When I first heard the song 'Carry On' I knew I was listening to a beautiful song just from the introduction, its amazing how wonderful the vocals are on this song, just listen and you will hear for yourself, its magical haunting and brilliantly sung, equally as good is 'Deja vu' with its incredibly haunting atmosphere, truly a masterpiece of perfection. When he sings, "We've all been here before" I can imagine the feeling because I have encountered Deja vu (won't go into that here). And what about "Almost Cut My Hair", gorgeous song with those wonderful hippy lyrics, he sings it with such raw emotions, that I can feel deep inside of me. Although there is a song that goes much deeper inside, really deep down inside, and that song is "4 + 20" sung by Stephen Stills, in his deep manly voice that is full of emotion, deep emotion, its about finding, losing, searching, and the sadness that is felt from within his heart, its so meaningful
Its more then a song, its a man opening up about the way he feels inside. 'Woodstock' is lovely, I think it is even better then the original one, by Mathews Southern Comfort (their version was also outstanding) its their harmonies, they are great. I love Neil Young's 'Helpless' its the way he sings, with that distinctive lilt in the voice, just makes me feel really good to hear someone who sings so loud and yet in total harmony. Songs 11. 12. 13 and 14, I do not have on my version of the CD, but I do know the song 'long time gone' its from their very first album
and its truly lovely, with David taking lead vocals, yes I like this song very much, he sings out loud and clear, just love it.
The songs I have not mentioned are also songs that I still like its just that they don't get so deep inside, hope you like this review, thank you for reading it, and hope you buy the album, because it really is on a higher plane....more info
- I wore my LP version out back in the day...
Crosby, Stills, Nash (and Young) really reached the stars on their first two efforts. This was the second release. Everything here is more than good, rewards repeat play, and represents the late '60's and early '70's musical and cultural forces well....more info
- ense?a a tus hijos este disco.....
esta placa representa el momento exacto en el cual esta particular reunion de musicos alcanza la verdadera comunion...parece ser el instante donde los egos y el esnobismo queda fuera para dar lugar a la sensibilidad y el talento exquisito....no creo que haya tema mas melancolico que "helpless"...mas esperanzado que "teach your children", mas realista que "almost cut my hair"...a esto sumale hasta la colaboracion de jerry garcia.... despues de alcanzar la cima, vendra el correspondiente album en vivo (muy recomendable tambien) para luego desandar el camino.....con discos muy flojos...por eso, refugiate en esta postal de un tiempo conflictivo pero prolifico y verdadero como pocos..... ...more info
- In best form.
This is one of the most beautiful album I ever heard. All songs are superb. All four members are in top form on this album. For me this is the best songs which they ever wrote.
Almost cut my hair - very intimate, with great hard vocal and super guitar
Deja vu - jazzy, free, great vocals and originality
Carry on - unconventional 3 - parts title
4+20 - beautiful intimate folk style song
Teach your children - his most popular song
Our house - my favourite song by Nash, with superb vocals
Helpless - in country style
Country girl - perfect noncommercial title with great vocals
and last title Everybody I love you - by Stills and Young with great Stills vocal in second part.
This album is must for all fans which like perfect music, perfect lyrics, for all fans which like art, no trasch(brak).
Note: Exist rare Czechoslovakian Lp of this album with great cover. Must for any Lp's collector....more info
- Fantastic Oldie
This recording has so much of what I was looking for in a early 60's music era with such great music and writing that it makes you crave for those days to come back. My favorite song on this recording is "Almost Cut MY Hair" It just brings back so many fun memories of how things really were back in the day....more info
- Deja Vu by Crosby Stills Nash & Young
Love it. The service was awesome, had the CD in just a matter of days after ordered....more info
- Deja Vu ~ Crosby Stills Nash & Young
I ordered this CD for my husband at his request. We both LOVE it! Our 15 month old grandson who lives with us enjoys listening to it while sitting on Grandpa's lap in the morning after his bottle. He will sit still through the whole CD. He likes to clap along to the beat of the music. If you like Crosby Stills Nash & Young you will enjoy this CD....more info
- Neil Young's work makes this music timeless
I listened this music a great deal when it was first released. I was tempted to purchase the cd over the last few years but couldn't get past the fact that some of the music/lyrics have badly dated (especially "Almost Cut My Hair" and "Woodstock").
Neil Young's "Country Girl" always struck me as the best song on the album. I heard it again at a music store listening post last year (probably for the first time in over twenty-five years) and it sent chills up my spine. I only hope that he finally includes it in his long awaited career retrospective that he's been tinkering around with for over five years. So much good material was left off his first retrospective (which is now over twenty years old) that it would be nice to have this song, and many others that he did early and later in his career....more info
- Great Accoustics and Harmonics
This product has great rock and roll sound from the 70's. Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young put together a true masterpiece that will live on through eternity. ...more info
- It Has Carried On
Interesting that, of the 105 reviews of this album (as of this writing), only 15 gave it less than 5 stars and only 8 gave it less than 4 stars. This is a true testament to the enduring quality of this work. I slightly prefer their debut album over this, but both are fabulous. My favorites, for what it's worth, are the two Stills compositions, "4+20" and "Carry On", Crosby's "Deja Vu" and Young's "Helpless". I can't believe one of the more negative reviews called "4+20" filler! Strangely, the "hits" from this CD, "Teach Your Children", "Our House" and "Woodstock", have always been my least favorites.
I always thought the orchestration on Young's "Country Girl" sounded a bit tinny. But how can you not notice great lines like,
"No pass-out sign on the doors set me thinking
Are waitresses paying the price of their winking
While stars sit at bars and decide what they're drinking
They drop by to die 'cause it's faster than sinking"
"Too late to keep the change, too late to pay
No time to stay the same, too young to leave"
HEAVY MAN!!! Remind you of anyone today?
If only CS&N or CSN&Y could have continued with a couple more solid albums like these first two. Easily one of the top 30 rock albums of the 1965-1975 period. ...more info
- Shows What We've Lost and What They've Lost
When I listen to Deja Vu these days, I'm surprisingly not reminded of the hippie movement or drug-induced paranoia or political activism, although you could say CSN and sometimes Y have really become posterchildren for this tumultous time in our history. Instead, I'm still swept away by the aural beauty of the jangling acoustic guitars, the richness of the songs, the perfect harmonies, the passionate performances. I'm still mesmerized by Stills' tasty guitar licks which run through "Carry On" and "Deju Vu" and the emotional choke in his voice on 4 + 20's final verse. I love Jerry Garcia's pedal steel guitar that cries all the way through Nash's "Teach Your Children" and the experience listening to "Almost Cut My Hair," which sounds as if the band is playing in your living room with their amps cranked. I still get an adrenalin rush when I hear Stills belting out "Woodstock," which for me is one of the most powerful vocal performances in all of rock. And I like the eccentric Young's slow-as-molasses but elegant "Helpless." It reminds me of a time when music was not meant to be background noise, or to be listened to while you read or studied, or walked between classes at the university. It was a time when you put the LP on your turntable and sprawled in a comfortable chair or sat on the floor and let the music take you completely away. Or maybe you got together with friends and sat around just listening to new releases like Deja Vu, reading every word in the liner notes on the jacket. This is what I think we've lost.
Deja Vu also shows what CSN (and sometimes Y) ultimately have lost. Sadly, after this pinnacle of achievement, except for occasional flourishes of good songwriting and performance, Crosby, Stills, & Nash would rarely recapture the beauty of this album or its predecessor. The exception has of course been Young, who somehow has managed to keep it all together through the years. And except for Stills' magnificent opus, Manassas (1), and C&N's Wind On the Water, I realize just how much drug addiction and delusions of grandeur have drained the talent from these once brilliant artists. Fortunately, we still have the time capsules created by Buffalo Springfield, CSN, Hendrix, Cream, The Doors, The Stones, and The Beatles to transport us back to the musical renaissance of 1967--1972. ...more info