Buffalo Springfield

Broken Arrow

Composed by Neil Young

Song Review by

Easily one of Neil Young's most ambitious early compositions, "Broken Arrow" is, on the surface, a collection of meditations on stardom (a brief snippet of "Mr. Soul" -- recorded live in the studio opens the recording), exhaustion, and hopelessness. Like Stephen Stills' songs of this period, Young explores arrangement ideas as part of the songwriting process here, and the result is a bona fide suite lasting more than six minutes. Lyrically, Young's sense of surrealism (a trademark of his early work, especially) reaches its zenith here. Without mentioning names directly, the Springfield, John F. Kennedy, and Young himself are referred to throughout the song. Musically, throughout the shifts in tempo, the song remains a true folk ballad, and the fact that Young is able to firmly keep this intact is a feat in itself.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Buffalo Springfield Again 1967 Atco 6:13
Retrospective: The Best of Buffalo Springfield 1969 Atco 6:13
Buffalo Springfield [Collection] 1973 WEA 6:13
No Image 1996
Various Artists
Buffalo Springfield [Box Set] 2001 Atco / Rhino 6:18
The Best of Buffalo Springfield: Retrospective 2007 Atlantic / Rhino 6:14
No Image 2013 Rhino
What's That Sound? Complete Albums Collection 2018 Atlantic / Rhino 6:18