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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Gold Coast, Australia Neil Young Concert Reviews

From The Courier-Mail "Neil Young warms up at Big Day Out for main event" by Noel Mengel:
"Most lead guitar players just settle for playing their instrument. With Young, his trusty 'Old Black' Gibson becomes an extension of him, intense yet welcoming and warm, every note pitched for maximum emotional effect.

Just as you felt he couldn't lift that emotion any higher, he cranked it up another notch through extended workouts on songs such as Cortez the Killer and Cinnamon Girl.

From my spot, directly in front of Young, near the mixing desk, the sound was as good as you can get at an outdoors show, with his voice ringing out clearly."

Neil Young will be performing tonight at Big Day Out 2009, Parklands, Southport, Gold Coast, Australia.

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 2009 Australia & New Zealand Concert Tour & Reviews and the right, middle sidebar for continuous real time RSS feed updates.


At 1/18/2009 07:16:00 PM, Blogger QueenslandChopper said...

I just got home from the Gold Coast Big Day Out, at which Neil performed, last night.

This was the first time I had seen Neil perform live and I have to say, he was amazing. I've not seen many, if any artists actually top their studio recordings live like Neil did last night. He was so clean and precise. Every song, bar one or two, had the crowd begging for more.

If you aren't aware of what the Big Day Out festival is about, it is a large, by Australian standards at least, music festival usually attended by mostly 18-24 year olds. All the current 'it' bands perform there. Prior to the concert, it was a concern that most of the younger crowd had little familiarity with Neil and his music. They do now. He absolutely rocked the joint.

I was there with a few friends and we noticed the crowd's mood change when he came on. Most of the day it had been a push and shove kind of affair, as to be expected with a large crowd of 60-70 thousand or whatever was there. Neil and his band came on and the crowd were in awe of this 'music god' performing before them. It was quite surreal. It was like he had chilled everyone out and at the same time excited them beyond their expectations.

He started off with a few of the likely suspects like Love and Only Love and Spirit Road, then did an acoustic set, which the crowd went wild for, as it included Needle and the Damage Done, Heart of Gold and Old Man. He then went into another run of classic electric tunes and finished off with his amazing rendition of A Day in the Life, at the end of which I nearly had a heart attack as he slammed 'Old Black' onto the ground and proceeded to rip the strings off it, shaking it around and creating a noise that is typically Neil/Old Black. I thought for a second though, this might have been the last time 'Old Black' might get used!

The set-list was as follows;

Love and Only Love
Hey Hey My My
Everybody Knows this is Nowhere
Spirit Road
Cortez the Killer
Cinnamon Girl
Mother Earth
Needle and the Damage Done
Old Man
Heart of Gold
Cowgirl in the Sand
Just Singin a Song Won't Change the World
Rockin' in the Free World
A Day in the Life

Stand by for the low-down on his show on Wednesday night! I can't wait!

At 1/18/2009 07:23:00 PM, Blogger Sigma6 said...

All I can say is WOW! Words cannot describe what I saw last night. When we first got the Big Day Out (BDO) they were sound checking Neil’s gear, I thought that was pretty cool being able to see everything up close. I saw the bird thing going up to the roof but it never came down? What was it? I was guessing a keyboard used in case they did Like a Hurricane, any ideas?

Anyway after the third last band on the main stages had finished (The Living End, a top Australian band) and some of the people had cleared we made straight for the front of the stage. There weren’t too many people there, only about 3 – 4 people deep. The crowds were all watching the Arctic Monkeys on the neighboring stage. We had an hour to wait before Neil would arrive on stage. It seemed as though the minutes were taking hours, just watching the digital clocks on stage. It was really cool to see all the young Neil fan’s there waiting. It was fun chatting about our Neil experiences and what we were about to see.

The crowd was building steadily and then when the Arctic Monkeys had finished there was a sea of people. Out they all came, Love and Only Love! What a great opener. I loved the EKTN stuff, awesome. When it came to Old Man and Heart of Gold, I stood there and it felt like it was just me and Neil, tears were welling in my eyes. What a moment. I love the new song Just Singing a Song. Rockin in the Freeworld was next, EVERYBODY new this song. It was epic. A Day in the Life was an experience. It was such a laugh to watch Neil draggin Old Black around the stage with strings in tow. Then the xylophone, does anybody know the significance of that note he plays at the end?

As I said, WOW! I took my girlfriend with me who knew a fair bit of Neil’s stuff (obviously from hearing it played everyday!), but after the gig she said to me “that was awesome! I really enjoyed every song. How old his he again?” 63, “man he can rock!”. He sure can and I can’t wait to see him again on Wednesday in Brisbane for the full set. Hopefully my ears would have stopped ringing from the onslaught of last night ready for another blissful battering :-)

At 1/18/2009 07:41:00 PM, Blogger QueenslandChopper said...

Oh yeah, Rockin' in the Free World was an epic! He just kept feeding off the crowd for that one... Brilliant!

At 1/18/2009 08:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the note at the end...played on the xylophone is the same note played in a day in the life...that last note after all the building.....DOOOONNNG. It really is the end of the song....Very fitting. And yes the keyboard..with the wings... is set up every show.. just in case Neil wants to play hurricane. It never really comes down...although on the 2007 US leg it was lowered every nite come encore time...but rarely used. Great to hear everyone enjoyed the show

At 1/20/2009 06:05:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was a great show, missed a couple off the set list that were played in Auckland, but to get a 90 min set at a festival is great. Amazing what he is doing at his age. The sound mix for both the acoustic and electric set was awesome, which is not always the case at the big day out festival. Going to sideshow tonight!


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