Le Noise Neil Young (Reprise Records) Neil Young's latest album is a sonically beguiling affair. It may only feature Young playing guitar and singing, but innovative producer Daniel Lanois has treated and effected Young's singular guitar so that it sounds like an orchestra of stringed instruments. The wide sonic landscapes Lanois conjures sound like the result of a jam session between Young and musical adventurers Sonic Youth. The music itself reflects Young's exemplary work with his old backing band, Crazy Horse. After a few patchy releases and diversions, Young has revisited this classic period and achieves the explosive power of Rust Never Sleeps without using a single drum. Lyrically, there's some politics in Angry World and touches of After the Goldrush in the folky epic Peaceful Valley Boulevard. Young seems to have reconnected with the poetry of Cortes the Killer and Cinnamon Girl, ditching the more straightforward narratives of recent works. The guitar Young plays, Lanois says, is no ordinary guitar: it's a special electro-acoustic instrument that creates various electronic and deep bass sounds along with standard electric guitar tones. This unexpected album has pushed Young to the forefront of rock innovation again.