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Friday, December 07, 2007

Concert Review of the Moment: Boston, MA: Concert Reviews - 12/2, 3 & 6/07

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The Concert Review of the Moment on Boston, MA - 12/2, 3 & 6/07 by Neilfan1111
I went to the Monday, Dec 3 show at The Orpheum and yes, while The Orpheum is a complete dump and a fire trap, it didn't really matter once Neil took the stage. I've been to about 50 Neil shows going back to when he was at The Music Hall (now the Citi Wang Center) in 1971 and last night's show was about the most enjoyable show I have ever been to. I found myself smiling throughout the entire show - the man is just amazing. Seriously, who else can come out and deliver a mesmerizing solo acoustic set featuring such unexpected treats as Kansas, On The Way Home and Love Is A Rose and then take a 20-minute break and come back and rip into The Loner and Everybody Knows This is Nowhere? Sheer genuius - Neil is a gift to all of us.

I had been following the tour set lists for previous shows so I was expecting to hear Try, After The Gold Rush, Campaigner and Heart of Gold during the acoustic set but Monday Neil replaced those with Kansas, On The Way Home, Love Is a Rose, and an awesome Cowgirl in the Sand. As he was prepping to play Love is a Rose, he talked about how Linda Ronstadt did the song and how it blew him away that she even did it with his unintended mistakes! Before the show the crowd had been told that the songs for the night had been previously selected by Neil so please do not yell out requests. Once between songs in the acoustic set, someone yelled out "Bluebird!"....Neil looked up and was only slightly annoyed and took a sip of his nearby Amstel Light and said "I figure a beer together can resolve all our differences." Gotta love it.

After being set up and mellowed out by 12 acoutic songs, the effect of the electric set I felt was more profound than usual. I could have done without The Believer and Bad Fog of Loneliness but the rest of the set was solid and pure vintage Neil. The new songs Dirty Old Man and Spirit Road were so awesome you'd think they were old songs but the gem of the night award has to go to No Hidden Path - the last song before the encore. It sounded so much better live and featured a 20-minute Allman Brothers/Neil Arc- style riff session with Ben and Rick - so good it gave me goosebumps - seriously Neil at his alltime best. It was now 11pm and I was thinking that the Orpheum police were going to shut it down for curfew reasons but Neil and band came back and delivered a high-energy white lights Cinnamon Girl and (no, no Cortez this time)a killer version of Like A Hurricane. The show ended at 11:20pm.

Neil's main squeeze Pegi Young delievered a surprisingly enjoyable 35-minute opening set - very upbeat, some country-ish tones but overall really good. how could it not be good when she was backed by Ben Keith, Rick Rojas and Anthony Crawford? Don't hang out at the bar waiting for Neil to come on - get in there and see Pegi = you'll be pleasantly surprised as I was.

I don't have tickets to the upcoming Thursday Dec 6 show yet but I will now spend the rest of the week trying to find some as you should. Do not miss Neil this time through - he is one of the best of all time, he is here in Boston this week and just delivered a killer show.

All of that positiveness aside, I do have one gripe: Neil - please tell the artisit you have onstage to leave his giant paintings at home - they blocked our view of Ralph Molina all night!

Read more Concert reviews of Boston, MA - 12/2, 3 & 6/07.


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