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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Tour Kicks Off Tonight in St. Paul, Minnesota

Photo by David Brewster, Star Tribune

Photo by Tony Nelson | Spin Magazine Online

"Cortez The Killer" - video by solace on More Cowbell

Concert review: Neil Young remains a font of energy, imagination -

Photo by Jim Mone | Seattle Times Newspaper

Photo by Jim Mone : Rolling Stone

Neil Young will be performing tonight at Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minnesota.

Got a report? Drop a comment below. No registration required.

Check Sugar Mountain for setlist updates. Also, see Grid Chart on Rust Radio.

Also, see Neil Young 2008 Fall North American Tour and Concert Reviews and the right, middle sidebar for continuous real time RSS feed updates.


At 10/14/2008 10:02:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher - I'll be there tonight and I'll try to post a set list when I get home.

It's a full moon tonight!!!!

At 10/14/2008 10:09:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only 62 days until Madison Square Garden!


Marian M.

At 10/14/2008 02:36:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a long way away in England but the moon is up and the thought of a new Neil tour kicking off tonight is quite a thrill. I won't see any of this tour thanks to the credit crunch having swallowed everything but I look forward to hearing some of it on Rust Radio - old favourites and new songs too! And what will you be getting for an encore over there?!

At 10/14/2008 02:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will be there tonight (10/14)-front row. Full moon and I'm ready to howl at it. Now if Neil could only be talked-into doing Moondance Jam next summer......CS&N made it this year.....wishful thinking.

Mikey B

At 10/14/2008 04:13:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Full moon and a jumpin' tune, now you don't have to ask.

Sure enough, they'll be sellin' stuff
When the moon begins to rise.
Pretty bad when you're dealin' with the man,
And the light shines in your eyes. Yeah!

At 10/14/2008 06:27:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been a Neil fan for almost 40 years now. And I will see him again in Vancouver next week. BUT...I think he is so full of crap selling tickets for $266.(inc. tax)That is insane....yea I paid it...but next time I don't know if I will.

At 10/14/2008 11:54:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Come on Minnesota! Whats the setlist? How was it?

At 10/15/2008 12:52:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great show. A lot of the best from Chrome Dreams II. Rust Never Sleeps, Harvest, Cortez, Cowgirl, Cinnamon Girl. Needle. He finished with the best version of "A Day in the Life" I've ever heard, ripping all the strings off his guitar. I saw him twice in Chicago last year, and this show was way, way better. He didn't have much to say, but he played the shit out of Old Black.

At 10/15/2008 01:08:00 AM, Blogger J Wilkinson said...

excellent show

i thought he was 75% shaman with the first song, so much power!

lots of hits. A fella painting canvasses behind drummer and backup singers.

encore "I saw the news today, oh boy..." by some pretty boy band...

At 10/15/2008 01:13:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

set list was and comparable to the european shows over the summer. outstanding performance all around thought, set list went something like this:
love and only love, hey hey my my, everybody knows, powderfinger, spirit road, cortez, cinnamon girl, helpless, mother earth, unknown legend, old man, heart of gold, get back to the country, just singing a song, sea change, when world collide, cowgirl in the sand, rockin in the free world, a day in the life.

a day in the life was really special, a couple a funny first night glitches like neil aborting the opening harmonica solo on helpless and throwing the harmonica rack on the ground. great show

At 10/15/2008 01:22:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love and Only Love
Hey Hey My MY
Everybody Knows this is Nowhere
Spirit Road
Cortez the Killer
Cinnemon Girl
Unknown Legend
Natural Anthem (pump organ)
Needle and the Damage
Old Man
Heart of Gold
Get Back to the Country
Singing a Song
Sea Change
When Worlds Collide
Cowgirl in the Sand
Keep on Rockin in the Free World

Day in the Life (encore)

Great energy. Fantastic Cortez (really killer)
kind of off on Cinnemon Girl
Very good Cowgirl
really nice Powderfinger
Unknow Legend was super.
Sea Change and When Worlds Collide were pretty weak songs, in my opinion.
Terrific NEEDle and the Damage

All and all, a great night that featured Old Black at its best.

Gear head report: Old Black used on all electrics except Spirit Road (Les Paul Junior)

No Baldwin Exterminator. He had the Deluxe, the 280 Magnatone, the Tweed Tremolux on top of the Maggie, and I think a tweed 5e8a low-power twin, with whizzers on both the deluxe and the twin.

Band - usual - Rojas, Crommwell, Keith, Pegi, and whats his face backing vocals

At 10/15/2008 06:45:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds awesome..a lot like the europe tour & farm Aid... He didnt play no hidden path? Cant wait for MSG!!!
the question I have is: what it worth the cash?

At 10/15/2008 10:03:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Worth the cash? Absolutely. And give the opening bands a chance too. I'm always surprised at how few people show up for the special guests. I'm a big DCFC fan and this is one of the best sets I've seen them play, although too short and for a disinterested audience.

As far as Neil... that black guitar was just soaring, especially on Cortez and Powderfinger. The backup singers brought back the feeling of the old albums. I haven't seen Neil play in many years and he's way better than I remembered. Not burning out, not fading away. Just getting better.

At 10/15/2008 10:05:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wanna second on Cortez - it really soared! Easily the best of the set. Love and Only Love was also terrific, if a bit workman like (I like the Horse better on this song because they keep speeding up and slowing down - Cromwell has better timing than Ralphie).

Very impressed with Neil's take on Day in the Life - very similar to the video I saw from one of the Euopean gigs - down to the pulling of strings on Old Black and let her howl. After that song, you know there won't be a second encore.

Neil seemed really refreshed and kicking after the month or so break. You could really tell he loved playing last night. Before going into a few of the old acoustic numbers, he said something about seeing a lot of "new people". Thought that was neat. My ears rang for hours. Loved the vibe, loved the sound, loved the aroma of weed.

At 10/15/2008 10:16:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is my best recollection of the setlist from last night (10/14). Awesome show. Favorite was Cowgirl in the Sand. Thanks Neil.
Mikey B

1.Love and Only Love
2.Hey Hey My My
3.Everyone Knows This is Nowhere
5.Spirit Road
6.Cortez the Killer
7.Cinnamon Girl
9.Natural Anthem
10.Needle and the Damage Done
11.Unknown Legend
12.Heart of Gold
13.Old Man
14.Back to the Country
15.Just Singing a Song Won’t Change the World
16.Sea Change
17.When Worlds Collide
18.Cowgirl in the Sand
19.Rockin’ in the Free World
20.Encore #1: A Day in the Life (Beatles)

At 10/15/2008 10:21:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Absoloutly it was worth the money...although I spent the least I could (but got me three rows of folks from the stage). For my first NY concert it didn't dissapoint - the drumming was phenomenal and really brought something special to Cortez.
Death Cab was great, but it's true the audience wasn't completely into it. Everest was surprisingly good, too.

At 10/15/2008 11:39:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Death Cab was a bore - really not something that Shakey fans are gonna find worthwhile. The main attraction starts at 9:00 pm. I mean, they are talented musicians, don't get me wrong, but they are the antithesis of "let it all hang out" Neil.

I agree that Cinnamon Girl was a bit "off". I liked his version from November 2007 a lot more. Powderfinger really rocked. Gotta give the Twin Cities crowd a lot of credit - they didn't sit on their hands and everyone had a blast.

Was it worth the money? My God! I can't think of ANYONE right now who gives as much value as Neil does with this show. It's as good as I've ever seen him (and I've seen him a lot).

At 10/15/2008 12:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nobody he does it! The man was on fire, he stomped and weaved, it was a fireball, it made my big toe shoot up in my boot. Neil on ole black. How Larry Craigg can keep that thing working is just magic, it has to be, Neil just pounds the living sound out of it. The finish with ole black on the floor, strings pulled and yet plays on, well I kept thinking I might see Jimi any moment now! I think Jimi was there! I think he got inside Neil last night!!! And I was there to witness it! Thank you Neil! Rosie

At 10/15/2008 01:10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great show last night. Agree with the prior reviews. To me, it complemented the 2007 shows nicely, not too much overlap in terms of set list. More energy - really nice pace to the set list. Great back-to-back Powderfinger and Cortez - "what a killer..." - one of the all time classics. This guy knows how to bring the energy and passion in an unbelievable way.

One other note - I think you cannot over-estimate Ben Keith's contribution. The pedal steel adds a great layer to a number of the songs, and his rhythm guitar is underrated. Also thought Chad Cromwell was very solid on drums.

I am generally a skeptic of covers - but A Day In The Life was truly awesome!!

At 10/15/2008 01:14:00 PM, Blogger RSS said...

Here is a pretty good review from a Minn Paper.

Sounds like a great show. Trying to get back to the US in December for a MSG show or a Philly show.

Enjoy all.


At 10/15/2008 01:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

also of note, there was an extremely overzealous (to put it kindly) fan one or two rows from the stage right next to me that kept yelling and shouting for the first half of the show, and he got alot of neils attention. at one point, after this guy had shouted "you're a miracle neil," neil said something along the lines of "we need a miracle on this stage". then during helpless, after the "big birds flying across the sky " line, the guy yells out "they don't fly anymore neil", which neil addressed multiple times in between songs.

At 10/15/2008 02:35:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They don't fly anymore? Really? Has anyone seen all the Canadian Geese we have in the Twin Cities? If they don't fly anymore, it's because they're too damn well fed.

At 10/15/2008 05:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My 5 Neil show in the past 5 years and I finally got to hear some songs I missed out on in the Greendale and 2007 shows. I managed to get right in front of Ben Keith which was amazing in itself. This is by far the most happy I have seen Neil at any of the shows I attended. He was constantly smiling and repeatedly thanked the audience. Even the numerous technical problems didn't get him too pissed!

One thing that immediately stuck out at the show was how much more animated Rick was. He was actually jumping up and down!

Chad is a good drummer but I think he tends to "over-do" it a little too much. He tries to get a little too fancy with his fills which cause his to lose the beat for a second. Most people wouldn't notice it, but seeing Rick look back and smile each time this happened gave it away. We need a Crazy Horse tour with Ben on Pedal that would be money.

I enjoyed Everest much more than Death Cab mainly because of their Danny Whitten cover. Did anyone catch the title? Death Cab reminded me of Coldplay's bastard stepchild. The spastic and jerky dancing didn't help either...a little EMO is too much for me.

Great show Neil and get that Omaha show rescheduled!

At 10/15/2008 05:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was it worth the money? Compare the value of Neil to the amateur crap you see in professional sports these days. Neil is a hall of famer, and played like a 20 year old maniac. I challenge any young band to put out the energy Neil left in Xcel Energy Center last night. It was the best concert I've seen in years and the best entertainment value around.

At 10/15/2008 05:13:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish that they would change some of the arrangements to have Ben Keith on pedal steel and have Anthony Crawford on 2nd guitar instead. The main example is "Powderfinger" since I love the 1985 tour so much. It would be nice to twang up that tune a little bit more.

At 10/15/2008 05:28:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One guy near me a few rows back from the stage kept yelling "OHIO!!" between every song. I dig the tune, but it seems odd to go there for one song when Neil's catalogue is full of classics. Maybe the dude was from Ohio, who knows.

Anyway, Neil plays like he's fixing to die on stage, which is the only way I can imagine him going out. I'm not trying to sound morbid; it's just the truth. He plays like he knows his guitar more intimately than a mother knows a son, why wouldn't he want to die with Ol' Black in his hands?

Great show; Thanks Neil

At 10/15/2008 05:30:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting show, by far not the best I've seen him do. I thought the shows last year in Chicago were a bit better, though that's open to interpretation and opinions. Glad to hear so many people loved it. Probably won't spend the money to go see another show on this tour, though I was a ready and willing soul.

He was definately in a good mood, as was just about everybody on stage. Rick looked real good, as did Ben. The peddle steel licks from Ben were about as good as I have heard live or recorded from him. Helpless and Powderfinger were quite compelling and my favorites. The first half made me smile ear to ear and the second half felt over-staged and not as genuine as the earlier portion of the show.

I felt a bit insulted by the merchandise prices (35-45 bucks a t-shirt). I always thought of Neil as more in touch with mainstream working people than a guy who would violate your wallet with his merch. during the worst economical times I have seen.

At 10/15/2008 07:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always thought "big birds flying across the sky" was a reference to airplanes, possibly war planes during the Vietnam War. Just my interpretation..

At 10/15/2008 07:13:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher don't know if you saw this or not...

It says "the latest word from Reprise is that "Archives" will be DVD only."

I'm glad it'll be on DVD...but how official is this? Do you think Neil will make it DVDs and CDs or just Blu Ray again? Who knows with him...I'm at least glad we're getting another album in November!

At 10/15/2008 07:58:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Roll on, Sydney - only three months to go!

At 10/15/2008 09:23:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Thrasher, i just recieved and e-mail from Neil's website,offering a pre-order of Suger Mountain,as well as publicizing the Archives Vol. 1, stating at the end of the e-mail "Stay tuned for the anticipated Neil Young Archives Vol. 1 (1963 – 1972). The 10-disc Blu-ray and DVD packages will be released early in 2009."


-Marc C

At 10/16/2008 12:50:00 AM, Blogger Buzz said...

Ol' Shakey is in Winnipeg Thursday night, and we are going to be there. Spent his formative years here, of course, with the Squires.

Have never seen him live. Had a chance a while back with CSNY, but thought we would wait unitl Neil came on his own. Never thought he would do it, but we are excited. Winnipeg is waiting to welcome him home.


At 10/16/2008 06:33:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Breaking news:

UNCUT has a Sugar Mountain preview online now!

Check it out at

Lot of spoken word... but they have a copy and I don't... B.S.M.

At 10/16/2008 07:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I knew people would change their tune about the cost once the shows started.
Neil doesn't disappoint!

At 10/16/2008 11:16:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although I'm missing him on this leg of the never ending tour, I'm hoping the rumors of additional U.S gigs in Spring 2009 are true. I'm looking forward to some setlist surprises also. It would be nice if some more "On the Beach" material shows up.

Can't wait for these shows to start showing up on DIME.

At 10/16/2008 01:17:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have my tickets in hand for the show tonight in Winnipeg. Last time Neil was here (csny) he apparently was showing people around his old neighbourhood (where he went to high school, places he hung out etc.

i suspect neil may have a love hate relationship with winnipeg (he is considered an utter god in thei city) but i hope that the show tonight is one of the more magical and special ones of the tour. (i'm hoping longer and with lots of banter....but one never knows).

regardless, can't wait! i'm so excited!

At 10/16/2008 03:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Here's a link to some photos from the Neil Young and Death Cab for Cutie show at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota we thought you might like to see.

A direct link:


At 10/16/2008 07:07:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

like everyone said, amazing show. I was right up front and Neil, and the band were having a great time.

I was right next to that over zealous guy too, glad somone else felt that and realized neil was calling him out subtly.

At 10/17/2008 01:30:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was there and it was unbelievable. The voice, the chords, the energy, and the passion that has apparently never left him. Neil has such a presence that you cannot help feeling a sense of awe and amazement just being in the same room as him.

His set list says it all; the hits were plentiful, some new, some old and an encore that would make The Beatles proud.

Keep on Rockin' Mr. Young, we know that you will!

At 10/17/2008 02:06:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We were there tonight (in Winnipeg) and it was awesome! Even my wife put into the top two or three concerts we have ever seen.

After almost two and a half hours, he still had the jump! Not so bad for an old guy!


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