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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Denver Concert Reviews of Neil Young - 4/27/09

Ben Keith, Neil Young, Rick Rosas
Photo by Tim Rasmussen

From Recap: Neil Young at Magness Arena | Features | Music | Denver/Boulder | Decider by Jason Heller:
Monday night at Magness Arena, Neil Young sounded like shit. Sloppy playing. Off-key singing. False starts. Muddy feedback. Classics that whizzed by too fast. Jams that dragged on too long. Stagehands wandering around aimlessly. Bandmembers wandering around aimlessly. Neil Young wandering around aimlessly. And, overall, the sense that the veteran rocker dared take the stage in front of several thousand people with a ragtag, under-rehearsed group that was barely able to connect the dots—let alone paint a full portrait of Young's songwriting genius.

In other words: It was damn near perfect.

From Live Review: Neil Young, Neville Brothers, Everest @ Magness Arena : Reverb Colorado by Michael Behrenhausen:
And so, at Young’s sold-out show at Magness Arena on Monday, I was interested to hear if those same new songs would be able to keep up with his classic cuts — and even spark a bit of renewable energy into both Young and the audience.

More of review and great photos here.

Neil Young will be performing tonight at Magness Arena, Denver, Colorado, USA.

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At 4/28/2009 01:21:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

is the concert still going on?

At 4/28/2009 03:37:00 AM, Anonymous Brent said...

Show was fantastic. The Nevilles definitely set the groove, and Neil finished out strong. Don't have the entire setlist but he opened with Love and only Love which is one of my favorites. We got Are you ready for the Country, a good mix of new songs, and the highlight for me was the Albuquerque > Speakin Out > Tonight's the Night (I'm pretty sure they were played in a row). Not sure who played lead guitar on Tonights the Night (Neil played piano), maybe a guitarist from Everest?! Closed with Just Singin a Song with a Watchtower encore. Saw Bob Dylan just two weeks ago in Amsterdam and Neil literally smoked his ass on Watchtower. I will never see Bob Dylan again, and I will never miss another Neil show that is within a reasonable distance.

There were free tickets available in the morning with the right code and luckily I scored a couple to bring a couple friends along which made the night even more fun. The venue was pretty full, with a pretty solid crowd. My friends got flack from the people they were sitting by for standing up. My rule of thumb is if Neil is standing up (usually electric) then it's fair game to stand up. I was happy I was on the floor and didn't have to deal with that situation.

Overall a great time!

At 4/28/2009 04:03:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you're going to start comparing Neil to Bob, how about you go all the way and compare their songwriting as well? Over the last 10 or 12 years say? Bob's been "smoking Neil's ass" his whole career, and even more so of late.

At 4/28/2009 05:53:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen Bob twice and both shows were awful. I've also seen Neil twice and both shows were fantastic.

At 4/28/2009 06:01:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suggested comparing their songwriting to balance things a bit, and get another comparison of their live shows as evidence of Neil's superiority. We get the same argument whenever Fork In The Road is panned - somehow Neil still being able to cut it live means he's still got it as a songwriter. Nice try.

At 4/28/2009 06:38:00 AM, Anonymous Espen said...

There's always a jealous bob dylan fan with a stupid argument coming in. I've also seen neil and bob a few times during the last years, and they really can't compare. Looks like bob is about to die any time on stage, while neil is the exact opposite, always on fire.

And btw, no I don't agree that bob is or have ever been a better songwriter than neil. This is subjective, and some of you bob maniacs seem ignorant and just plain stupid when claiming your own opinions as facts, when it is all a matter of individual taste.

(Btw, modern times had mostly cover songs!)

This has been bugging me a long time here on thrasherswheat, now i just had to get it out.

At 4/28/2009 07:29:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You reckon Neil's got a Time Out Of Mind in him? I don't.

At 4/28/2009 08:12:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob is stupid and Neil is smart...

At 4/28/2009 08:16:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob is black and Neil is white..Bob is lame and Neil is duck...Bob is mustard and Neil is ketchup...what the hell difference does it make. Is there room in the universe for both camps?
These discussions / arguments are inFANtile...

At 4/28/2009 08:21:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey guys, nothing else about the Booker Ts album ? Great one.
Great alchimy between Neil w the Drive By Truckers. Native N.Yorker reminds me the Stupid Girl Neil.

The new Bob is great too, tex mex blues, really cool. Dig it.

At 4/28/2009 08:31:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately Dylans voice is shot... dead.....horrible....difficult to listen too. BUT and I mean BUT,Dylan can still write !!!!!!!
You cannot compare Neils 60 year old+ writting to Dylans post 60 writting.Dylans writting blows Neil away.Not even close.Neil should stop releasing these embarassingly bad CD's.Neils last 3 albums should just be combined into 1.Throw out all the filler...then you have a "decent" album.
But live, Dylan cant come close to Neil.But sont think for a second that FITR,CD2,LWW even comes close to anything Dylan has released in the last 8 years.I wish Neil had a Time out of Mind in him.....BUT HE DOESNT !!!!

At 4/28/2009 08:41:00 AM, Blogger Tweck9 said...

Ridiculous Neil bashing by the Dylan fans. Neil's last 3 or 4 cds have tons of heart, originality, fire and creativity in them. Anyone who pretends to think otherwise is just dead wrong. You can say you don't like them, or they aren't for you, but there is no denying the forces at work inside them.

And Bob Dylan is great too, so just please shut up about it, it IS a ridiculous argument. They're both hugely creative, driven people who are masters of their trade, and passionate about what they do. And neither of them have "gotten worse", they've just changed, evolved, progressed...

For God's sake.

At 4/28/2009 09:07:00 AM, Blogger Shadow said...

They are both great i been listening to both for over 40 years . I have records, tapes and cd's of both of them . Also Springfield , CSN and CSNY all have been and are great . IN THIER OWN WAYS .

At 4/28/2009 09:13:00 AM, Anonymous karen said...

Neil v. Bob: show some respect folks! They've both more than earned than moniker of "legend," and we are so lucky that they are both still cranking it out, jayzus h. christ almighty!

Let's get back to the matter at hand: LAST NIGHT'S SETLIST??? Still haven't seen an official setlist from this show, but this was posted on The Rust List (thanks JShields).

Love And Only Love
Fuel Line
Are You Ready For The Country
Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
When Worlds Collide
Hit The Road?
Change Your Mind
Cinnamon Girl
Mother Earth
Needle & The Damage Done
Light A Candle
Heart Of Gold
Speakin' Out
Tonight's The Night
Down By The River
Get Behind The Wheel
Just Singing A Song

All Along The Watchtower

Think I"ll get behind the wheel, hit the road, and go to town. NEW ORLEANS TOWN that is.... : ) Jazzfest here I come. YES! Neil, let's hang out. Call me.


At 4/28/2009 09:22:00 AM, Anonymous Mikey said...

Don't let another day go by without the magic touch!

At 4/28/2009 09:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was at the show last night, great show! What the deal with the painter towards the back of the stage??

At 4/28/2009 09:45:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey, at least neil writes his own lyrics BY HIMSELF. bob has been massively overrated lately. his new music all sounds the same...blues shuffle, creaky croaky voice. yawn.


At 4/28/2009 09:57:00 AM, Anonymous Brent said...

Sorry to start the flame war there, that was a little bit of the cold ones talking still and Bob was still pretty fresh in my mind. If I were to rewrite this this morning I would change "smoked his ass" to "played a much more passionate and more fun to watch and listen to" version of Watchtower. I'll clarify my position a little.

The songwriting argument is a great point. No question about it, Bob is a great writer and can still write. The fact that Neil covered Bob in his encore is an obvious example of that.

I guess what I should have said in my first post is that Bob Dylan can't touch Neil in terms of passion! Just watching Neil play (even his new ones) is a treat. I've seen Bob twice. Again I'm not questioning his songwriting or his ability to put music to words, but strictly the live show. Both times I have seen Dylan he hasn't said a word to the crowd and has only gotten up from behind the organ to walk off the stage.

I will still stand by not wanting to see Bob Dylan again. He's a legend, but he's getting paid a lot of money to sit up there and play an hour and forty five minutes. It's easier for me to enjoy myself at a show when it looks like the artist is enjoying playing his/her music.

Again, I should have stated my comments differently. For my Bob, I'm going to stick the studio stuff and pass on the live shows, and for Neil it is almost the opposite lately.

How about that show last night though! Does anyone know who was playing lead guitar on Tonight's the Night? Did anyone else think Art Neville was going to throw down a little funk on the organ on stage left during Neil's set? I was hoping.

At 4/28/2009 10:22:00 AM, Anonymous Chris Kirby said...

Regarding the selist...

Love And Only Love
Fuel Line
Are You Ready For The Country
Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
When Worlds Collide
Hit The Road
Change Your Mind
Cinnamon Girl
Mother Earth
Needle & The Damage Done
Light A Candle
Goin' Back
Heart Of Gold
Speakin' Out
Tonight's The Night
Down By The River
Get Behind The Wheel
Just Singing A Song

All Along The Watchtower

Other notes... He had to restart Are You Ready For the Country; said something about a mike problem, I think. Change Your Mind, Down By The River, and Tonight's the Night were big highlights for me. Electric Pocahontas was also great. There was a cool moment between songs when he said "I guess this is where I should be telling you something innaresting," then just walked away and started the next song. Classic... :)


At 4/28/2009 11:48:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look, Neil's great. But he's not a patch on the Mighty Quinn.

At 4/28/2009 01:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

great show! an awsome mix of new and classic songs, neil was definatly at his rockin best!
Thank you Neil for an unforgetable night

At 4/28/2009 01:04:00 PM, Blogger Frank said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 4/28/2009 01:12:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Incredible show. He didn't restart Are You Ready For the Country? because of a mike problem. He hadn't talked to the audience yet and decided that he needed to say hello. It made me laugh. But seriously, a great concert with a good mix of old and new. Everest and the Neville Brothers did a good job of warming the crowd up and then Neil took us home. I can't wait to see him again.

About the whole Dylan, Young thing. They're both great. I've seen Dylan live recently and he doesn't compare to Neil, right now. But both guys have written great songs and I think that by playing All Along the Watchtower, a Dylan song, as his encore, Neil showed the respect he has for Dylan.

At 4/28/2009 01:14:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think it's funny that they were giving away tickets for free in Denver. Not even 50% sold out.
What does that say for the future ?
It means tickets for Neil will be cheaper. You will see the day
of $ 25-50 Neil tickets...... the way it should be ! Thats what happens when people get greedy !

At 4/28/2009 02:04:00 PM, Anonymous K Dennis said...

Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but the venue was 95% full from where we were sitting - near the top on the side with 30 rows. The place is a concrete barn, and swallowed the Neville's sound whole from our vantage, but Neil - less instruments, simpler arrangements - sounded great. That trio of tunes from Tonight's The Night was stellar, and it as Antony Johnson playing a smoking guitar on Tonight's The Night. Both he and Pegi strummed acoustics during Watchtower - while and the drummer were absolutely blistering! Ending with a new song was an interesting choice, and I was hoping for Fork In The Road or Johnny Magic, but such is life. Tremendous energy, the man is at the top of his game right now - my 11th Neil show and one of the best.

At 4/28/2009 02:26:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Matthew!!

At 4/28/2009 04:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dissapointing show. I have seen Neil twice before and this was really below the potential. Perhaps it's because I think his new album is half ass (can at least 1 song NOT be about a car?) but his set list was a shoe-gazer temperate choices. IE: No Cortez, Hurricane, Cowgirl, CSNY songs, or even any from Prairie Wind which is one if better recent albums.
And Watchtower as the encore? You have got to be kidding me!
With the enormous catalog of songs of his own he could of chosen he decided to do a worn out Dylan song...good thing my ticket was free or I would be really pissed off for spending close to 70 bucks!

At 4/28/2009 04:44:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There were free tickets last night? That bums me out because I paid for the 100 dollar GA ticket... I would have loved to have gone for free.

I thought the show was fantastic. Vintage Neil. I thought the new songs fit into the set fairy well... and it didn't seem like people lost interest at any point. Kinda bummed we didn't hear Spirit Road. I thought that was great at Wells Fargo last time.

I've seen three shows at this "barn" and this is the first that sounded good. So that's a kudos to Neil's people.

Here's hoping for cheaper tickets and Red Rocks next time... but just as killer of a show.

At 4/28/2009 05:14:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am young Neil Fan. The Neiler was off the the hook. I Am suprised that Magness arena is still standing. Everybody knows this is nowhere was a Highlight for me. I dig the Jam scene and Neil Jamed down by the river like a Champ. Just to get a good word in I enjoy Bob and Neil too, way different styles. Music is expression not competition

At 4/28/2009 07:03:00 PM, Blogger Jesse said...

Neil was highly energized and entertaining as to be expected, but I can not get over how stale Rick and Ben appear on stage. Ben looked ghostly at times. Not the same connection as he and Crazy Horse have mastered in the past. I have to say that the General Admission arrangement for seating works well for Neil, since there is the on-going debate about when it is appropriate to stand at his concerts. Change Your Mind, Albuquerque, Mother Earth, Are You Ready for the Country, and Down by the River were highlights for me. He also killed on All Along the Watchtower!

At 4/28/2009 08:42:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

" That trio of tunes from Tonight's The Night was stellar, and it as Antony Johnson playing a smoking guitar on Tonight's The Night." ~K DENNIS

WRONG nAME dudE!. it was Anthony Crawford playing the hell out of the guitar on those tunes. he also burnt it up on speakin' out. he's only been playing with them for years. it was an awesome show!!! NEIL ROCKS!!!!!

At 4/28/2009 08:55:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well lets put it this way, if a live CD is going to be released from this tour in 2009 the Denver show would not be the one, not a bad set list though just a shakey shakey voice especially during Mother Earth.

At 4/28/2009 10:11:00 PM, Anonymous steven said...

"I can not get over how stale Rick and Ben appear on stage. Ben looked ghostly at times"

you guys are just harsh. i mean, come on, we've got a legend that is playing his heart out for us....not to mention the legends he has playing in his band. and as far as the comments on ben and rick, i think you don't know who you are talking about or what. they are the ultimate in professional because they know who they are on stage with and they yield in a most respectful way. they aren't there to put on some circus show for us. ben is a legend who has played on patsy clines "i fall to pieces" so lay off and learn to appreciate. rick plays with joe walsh and has been seen with members of the rolling stones so he must be doing something right. go find someone better to watch live if you think you can. maybe neil and the band are just above your head.

At 4/28/2009 11:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone know what the deal was with the painters in the background? Those dudes must've done at least 10 pictures during the concert. Also, what's the deal with the random letters lighting up? I saw it said NEIL during the encore, but besides that I was clueless.

Good concert tho, I wish he wouldn't play so much of the stuff off his new album. Its not that great compared to his classics.

At 4/28/2009 11:47:00 PM, Anonymous Jesse said...

Wow...I did not know that is was not ok for us to put our opinions out there! I will just shut my mouth and not have instead of sharing how I feel...what?! There are a lot of assumptions thrown out there in the previous comments toward my experience of the show last night. I have nothing but respect for Ben and Rick's ability, and they have every right to be playing along with Neil. Reality is, they do not have a stage presence, and this took away from the experience of the show, period. With that said I would pay the same amount to watch them again tonight.

At 4/29/2009 12:08:00 AM, Anonymous K Dennis said...

Apologies for getting Anthony's name incorrect.

If you had told me beforehand that Neil was going to not play Rockin' In The Free World, Like A Hurricane, Cortez The Killer, Old Man, Powderfinger, My My Hey Hey or Cowgirl In The Sand, and it was still going be a stellar evening, I would not have believed it. Then it happened.

My first Neil show was Time Fades Away tour, and even though I was all of 15, seeing an auditorium full of folks get their expectations upset has always stuck with me, and defined Neil for me in many ways. Last night, leaving all those NY standards out of the set list, he successfully defied expectations again! Brilliant...

At 4/29/2009 01:30:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

stage presence my ass
they do not play for madonna.

At 4/29/2009 01:59:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interview with Anthony Crawford:

Thus far, what is the defining moment in your career?

Playing the guitar solo on stage with Neil Young on his classic songs, "Tonight’s the Night" and "Speakin’ Out". We were at sound check at the beginning of this Tour and he went over to the piano and started playing “Speakin’ Out” and I just stood there and listened. A few moments later he said for me to play Nills Lofgren's part. It occurred to me then that I am one of only a few that have ever played a solo on his stage....Neil is the man when it comes to that, but hey... this makes it very easy for me to answer this question. I have been blessed to be on stage with such an icon.

At 4/29/2009 09:28:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish Neil would sometimes play "Southern Man " and "Thrasher", but he never seems to include them.
And I wish he'd drop "Heart of Gold" for good.Too much of it already.

At 4/29/2009 03:13:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You reckon Neil's got a Time Out Of Mind in him? I don't."

Neil already delivered his "Time Out Of Mind". It was called "Sleeps With Angels".

Bob's last 4 albums have been great. Neil doing his own thing too. Both great, although I wouldn't pay money to see Dylan in concert again.

At 4/29/2009 03:53:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time out of mind is a GREAT work.

Sleeps with angels is mediocre Neil at best.

NO Fuckin comparison.

At 4/29/2009 04:07:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

sleeps with angels is classic neil. one of his best. time out of mind is overrated. you are correct sir, no comparison.

At 4/29/2009 04:59:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What the hell kind of review is this?,27268/


At 4/29/2009 05:56:00 PM, Anonymous dr dip said...

Welcome back to World championship Blogging!...tonight!, LIVE from The Magness Arena in good ole Denver Colorado.

Hi, I'm your commentator, Dr dip..and it looks like we've got a good card tonight..with some of the regular bloggers appearing on the bouts, but I notice quite a few of the unknown Anonymouses peekin' out for a shot as well!..should be inneresting!

Top of the card, we've got a tag team blog..should see some heavy comment with a lot of good retort in this thread!

A lot of jeering from the crowd here as the old stalwart referee "The Thrasher" makes his way to centre ring...should see a lot of editing and deleting decisions goin' down here tonight, with this ref heh!

In the Red "b" corner we have 'Jesse' and his bloggin partner 'Matthew Lintzenich' and Brent "The instigator"

In the Blue corner we have The "Shadow" and his offsider Karen and an unknown "anonymous".

This is goin to get very inneresting when we see where this thread heads!

Here we go folks.. and its Brent.. comes into centre ring with a nice opening comment..but fires a hit to the threadbasket with a low shot on Dylan versus Young..bad move Brent..Thrasher's lookin VERY carefully at that low shot..but he's let it go!!..surprising!

Anonymous comes back with a good retort!...Wait a minute! ....ANONYMOUSES HAVE COME FROM EVERYWHERE..This comment has certainly sparked a few embers!

Anonymouses are firin low shots from everywhere!..if thrasher don't step in, where in for a blogfest!

Brent's made the tag to Matthew after Espen tried to calm things down. Christ, this is a strong thread goin' here.. with comments and retorts flyin!

This sorta of reminds me of that other great thread last month over the "FORK" debate..this seems to be headin that way!

Brent's tagged to The "shadow" and he too has tried the calming approach and the bout's looking a bit settled with Karen jumpin in!

Espen throws in a niggling remark!

This thread is proven to be VERY sensitive indeed, with a lot of quick retort jabs comin from everywhere!

Someone needs to get this thread back on track before Thrasher will have to step in and stop the Blog!

Yep, WCB at a venue coming near you!

At 4/29/2009 06:03:00 PM, Anonymous Kevin Dennis said...

Carol, that was a strange one...wonder if that guy has ever seen NY before?

This Denver Post review was much more accurate in my opinion. One of the comments repeated something I heard from a few folks who attended the 4/10 Springsteen date in Denver - boring. That's one thing that could never be said about Neil's Denver date.

At 4/29/2009 07:10:00 PM, Anonymous Brent said...

Haha! Love the play by play Dr. Dip. I came on here right when I got home from the show and was surprised to see no review. Needless to say, I had to throw something on. It was the 24oz beers and the not being far enough removed from my buddy (who went to both shows) and my conversation after the show! When I checked out the blog the next morning, I thought, ah crap, what have I started.

That was a cheapshot in my first comment (though not as cheap as that review by the decider!) I should have known better. I usually stay out of the Bob v. Neil debates!

At 4/29/2009 08:39:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great show, Neil will never grow old. Are there any more editorial photos of the show?

At 4/29/2009 09:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very much a LET DOWN with the new stuff. Reminds me of Michael Jordan playing minor league baseball...

Cortez? Powderfinger? Cowgirl? Please Neil anything but environmental BS, especially with his 5 tour buses out front and vintage footage of his gas hogs on his ranch. What an environmental poser.

I would rather listen to old concert material off of futhernet, at least the sound is good on old recordings.

At 5/18/2009 04:31:00 AM, Blogger Greg Mantho said...

Thanks Matthew Lintzenich. All the other posts not in line with yours are just noise- obnoxious noise.

Greg M

At 9/23/2009 02:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

this thread was hilarious. i never knew there was such animosity between dylan fans and young fans. for me personally, neither artist has done anything worth a tinker's dam in the last twenty years. i loved rocker neil. can't stand country neil. and all these sentimental earth songs put me to sleep faster than sodium pentathol.


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~~ Fannie Lou Hamer

Here Comes "The Big Shift"

Maybe everything you think you know is wrong? NOTHING IS AS IT SEEMS
"It's all illusion anyway."

Propaganda = Mind Control
Guess what?
"Symbols Rule the World, not Words or Laws."
... and symbolism will be their downfall...

Brighter Planet's 350 Challenge
Be The Rain, Be The Change

the truth will set you free
This Machine Kills Fascists

"Children of Destiny" - THE Part of THE Solution

(Frame from Official Music Video)

war is not the answer
yet we are
Still Living With War

"greed is NOT good"
Hey Big Brother!
Stop Spying On Us!
Civic Duty Is Not Terrorism

The Achilles Heel
Orwell (and Grandpa) Was Right
“Emancipate yourself from mental slavery.”
~~ Bob Marley

The Essence of "The Doubters"

Yes, There's Definitely A Hole in The Sky

Even Though The Music Died 50+ Years Ago
Open Up the "Tired Eyes" & Wake up!
"consciousness is near"
What's So Funny About
Peace, Love, & Understanding & Music?


Show Me A Sign

"Who is John Galt?"
To ask the question is to know the answer

"Whosoever shall give up his liberty for a temporary security
deserves neither liberty nor safety."

~~ Benjamin Franklin


(Between the lines of age)

And in the end, the love you take
Is equal to the love you make

~~ John & Paul

the zen of neil
the power of rust
the karma of the wheat