February 01, 1982 12:00 PM

Neil Young & Crazy Horse

Poor Neil. He’s just never got over the fact that he is not Johnny Rotten. As much as he might flail about, strike a Dada pose and sing unmelodically, he’ll never manage to re-create the smarmy anger that made the Sex Pistols’ Anarchy in the U.K. a brilliant piece of revolutionary pap. Consider a cut that drones on for nearly 10 minutes where the entire lyrics consist of the refrain: “Got mashed potatoes/Ain’t got no T-bone.” More like it would be “Ain’t got no backbone/I’m just Mr. Potato Head.” If the “reactor” title somehow conjures up visions of a rock meltdown, caveat emptor. This is just drips and drabs of an arrogant artist’s bile. On the opening cut Young sings: “You were born to rock/ You’ll never be an opera star/Some things never change/They stay the way they are/Ho-Ho-Ho-Ho-Ho-Ho.” Re.pul.sive.

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