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Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Concert Review of the Moment: Neil Young - Tower Theater 4/30/11

There are those rare reviews that we actually print out on occasion to read at a more leisurely pace.

Such is this one which is one of the finest concert reviews we've read in awhile -- a very evocative and atmospheric report on the Neil Young concert at the Tower Theater on April 30, 2011 by Amused Cynic:
This seemed as much an acting role as a musical performance, but I’m not quite sure who the character was?

He wore a white sportcoat over a T-shirt and jeans, topped off with a straw Panama hat. He looked sort of like a tall, gangly Leon Redbone. The set had the feel of a living-space, but an eccentric one–at times it reminded me of an attic, or an old loft. I half expected to see clouds of dust, and cobwebs. Later, as he roamed among the furnishings wordlessly, looking at them if he was deciding to sit down, or play one of the keyboards (and sometimes seeming to consult quietly with the cigar store indian) it made me think of an avuncular version of the Phantom of the Opera in his subterranean hideout.

Between songs he would roam, like an absent-minded professor who had forgotten why he had come upstairs, but then he would approach an instrument, seize it and play with conviction. There was almost no direct acknowledgement of the audience, almost no conversation–any communication directed at us in particular was woven into the song.

It was as if he inhabited this odd space, and we were watching him through a huge two-way mirror, seeing him clearly while he could only catch faint glimpses of us, and really was barely aware that we were there.

The full must-read review by Amused Cynic.

Also, see Neil Young News: Concert Reviews of Neil Young: Tower Theatre, Upper Darby, PA, April 30 & May 1, 2011.


At 5/03/2011 06:31:00 PM, Anonymous Mother Nature Out the Door to pick up the babysitters said...

I've seen Leon Redbone play back in the 70s so I have no idea what image you're trying to conjure up here. But I do agree that Neil tends to ignore audiences from which he gets bad vibes. I mean he's subtle about it but if he doesn't "feel right" then most likely he's not there. Someone most often is though.

My mantra has always been treat others the way you or your loved ones to be treated.

At 5/03/2011 09:55:00 PM, Blogger bobdylanfan said...

Neil is going to DETROIT!!! TOMORROW!!! I was born and raised in Detroit!!! But, I live in Las Vegas now!!! I heard that he was here in November, at the SEMA convention, when he brought LincVolt (just before the tragic fire). I wish I had of known, I could have drove down to the Convention center to see his tour bus!!! (IT WAS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC) I wonder what are his feelings about the last couple of days NEWS!!!! I would love it if Neil came here and did a solo concert. I have never had the opportunity to see him in person. Oh well, if he does not come to Vegas, I could probably drive to Los Angeles, or somewhere close to see him LIVE!!! :)

At 5/04/2011 02:50:00 PM, Anonymous Paul Simpson said...

Thanks for the kind words....glad you enjoyed the piece.
-Paul Simpson. (

At 5/04/2011 03:05:00 PM, Blogger BIGCHIEF said...

bobdylanfan: Why did you leave Detroit? Ain't nothing happening in Vegas, besides, we have a Neil Young Concert happening in just a few hours! Bummer, aye?

At 5/04/2011 03:11:00 PM, Blogger BIGCHIEF said...

I'm gonna arrive at the Fox a few hours early. Gonna try to catch Neil coming back to his bus from the soudcheck with hopes of just an opportunity to shake the mans hand and get an autograph. It will be the 36th concert of his that I've attended and the thought never crossed my mind to meet him. It may not happen tonight but its worth a try ...


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