Storytone was produced by The Volume Dealers (Neil Young and Niko Bolas), recorded and mixed by Al Schmitt with additional co-production, arrangements, orchestration, and conducted by Michael Bearden and Chris Walden. Thanks to social media and a few loose-lipped collaborators, fans learned of the project some months ago.
Young “took a different approach with this record,” according to a statement, “first recording the songs on his own in a solo-setting, then creating compelling versions of the songs in a new light with an orchestra and big band, resulting in a deeply-personal emotional listening experience throughout the new record."
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Configurations of the album release include a deluxe 180 gram double vinyl pressing, which will be released on Dec. 19 and will feature both versions of the album. Naturally, the album will be available via Young's crowd-sourced music player Pono.
Young told Billboard he had an urge to do a symphonic recording. "I'd like to make a record with a full-blown orchestra, live -- a mono recording with one mic," he said earlier this year. "I want to do something like that where we really record what happened, with one point of view and the musicians moved closer and farther away, the way it was done in the past. To me that's a challenge and it's a sound that's unbelievable, and you can't get it any other way. So I'm into doing that."
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The veteran artist has toured throughout much of 2014 -- both on his own and with Crazy Horse -- promoting his solo covers project A Letter Home, which was released April 19 via Third Man. Storytone is his 35th album.
"Storytone" track-listing for 2-CD deluxe set:
1. "Plastic Flowers" (Solo)
2. "Who’s Gonna Stand Up?" (Solo)
3. "I Want To Drive My Car" (Solo)
4. "Glimmer" (Solo)
5. "Say Hello To Chicago" (Solo)
6. "Tumbleweed" (Solo)
7. "Like You Used To Do" (Solo)
8. "I’m Glad I Found You" (Solo)
9. "When I Watch You Sleeping" (Solo)
10. "All Those Dreams" (Solo)
1. "Plastic Flowers" (Orchestral)
2. "Who’s Gonna Stand Up?" (Orchestral)
3. "I Want To Drive My Car" (Orchestral)
4. "Glimmer" (Orchestral)
5. "Say Hello To Chicago" (Orchestral)
6. "Tumbleweed" (Orchestral)
7. "Like You Used To Do" (Orchestral)
8. "I’m Glad I Found You" (Orchestral)
9. "When I Watch You Sleeping" (Orchestral)
10. "All Those Dreams" (Orchestral)