A sequel of sorts to his earlier On the Beach, King of the Beach continues the laid-back mood of the earlier album but is (despite the goofy title) a more mature and unified work. It's one of his best albums and is a return to form after the film soundtrack La Passione and the more electronic sounds of The Road to Hell Part 2. Written primarily during a vacation in the Turks and Caicos Islands, it's replete with lots of beach and summer imagery in the titles ("King of the Beach," "All Summer Long," "Sandwriting," "Sail Away") as well as the lyrics, which were originally written as poems. A remix of "All Summer Long" was a big dance hit in Ibiza and other Mediterranean hot spots. A good album for a summer day, with a soulful mellowness flowing through the tracks.
The Best Neil Young Albums of All Time
'On the Beach'
For many, many years, On the Beach was Neil Young's great lost album. The LP didn't generate a lot of heat when it came out in 1974, and Young didn't release it on CD until 2003. Its absence from the marketplace turned it into somewhat of a mythical album, and those who dug it up in the pre-Internet days discovered an incredibly depressing album about the perils of fame. The opener "Walk On" confronts Young's critics, while the creepy "Revolution Blues" is told from the perspective of a Charles Manson-like serial killer. Side two is a more serene affair. "Ambulance Blues" and "On the Beach" are two of the strongest songs Young has ever written, and two of the saddest.