Leave it to Neil Young to release a patriotic video on the Friday evening of 4th of July weekend.
Upon first glance, this is a patriotic video with flags waving, fighter jets flying in tight formation, and big birds flying across the sky. As usual with Neil, there’s more to the picture than meets the eye… and over the course of the three-and-a-half-minute video, there are captivating images of protests, war ravaged city streets, the Capitol Building in Washington D.C., Saint Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow, Freedom Tower in New York City, and Mecca in Saudi Arabia. It’s a provocative look at human civilization in 2017, but maybe a little disjointed.
Lyrically, the song is another environmental anthem, which Neil has been doing since forever ago. The backing band, Lukas Nelson and Promise of the Real, provide a solid rock foundation, while a big orchestra gives a bombast that is balanced against bare and emotional choruses with particularly emotional singing from Young, who is now 71 years old.
The YouTube description says more about the production and personnel on the recording:
“Children of Destiny” was recorded and mixed at Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA, and produced by The Volume Dealers: Neil Young and Niko Bolas. Young, along with Promise Of The Real, and a 56 piece orchestra — 62 musicians in all — played together on the final piece. Al Schmitt recorded and mixed, while strings were arranged, orchestrated, conducted and co-produced by Chris Walden.
“Children of Destiny” probably won’t shoot up the charts or be a new favorite song of Neil Young fans, but you have to salute the man who has been speaking truth to power in creative new ways for over 50 years. My biggest criticism is that — considering Young was born in Toronto and cut his teeth in Winnipeg — maybe they could have included at least one Canadian flag in the video? Otherwise, I suggest Canada should change its flag to the peace symbol with arrows through it.
For more, check out Neil Young’s Zumic artist page.