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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Concert Review of Moment: Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Sydney, AUS - Mar 10, 2013

Neil Young & Crazy Horse
A Day On The Green, Hunter Valley, AUS on Mar 9, 2013
Photographer: Kevin Bull | Reverb Magazine Online
(Click photo to enlarge)

Contrary to whatever perception one might have of the current Australia leg of the Alchemy World Tour of Neil Young & Crazy Horse, not all is lost, by far.

Now witness the quickness with which we get along.

The Concert Review of Moment is from Neil Young News: Concert Reviews of Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Sydney, AUS - Mar 10, 2013 by AlbaN:
Sydney 2013-03-10 - Crazy Horse at their finest

Last night I (53 years) and my 20-year-old son got to experience the horse at their absolute finest.

Yes that's right, at their absolute finest! This experience left me in no doubt that the horse are at the top of their game right now; raw, rowdy, grungy guitar-based primal stomp music. The muse is still flowing, my foot is still tapping, even after a few hours sleep. Still in awe how they do it. If you're a horse fan it don't get any better than this I can assure you.

I was a little concerned before going re some of the comments about the concert and the extended endings & huddles etc, but I was more than impressed and it was above all expectations, far far above. These guys were on fire; they threw everything they had into the performance and they were having so much fun. We were right on the rail (front row GA) in front of Poncho. What a gentleman he is, gave me the finger and I gave it back twice as hard. He was in party mode and loving it, he was singing along to the songs even though he was far from the microphone. You could see and feel he loved them and doing his thing. Who would think they are all 60+ years. It was really great to see them interacting and how they interplay the guitar bits and to see them play their new stuff, artists doing what’s closest to them at the time. And we got to hear a new song performed prior to most of the world, what a treat. And the piano song (Singer without a song), none of us have really heard that before, how sweet it was. Neil provided one acoustic staple old fave in heart of gold, but it was then back to the new and how great they are, twisted road what a tale.

The concert had a range of emotions, power and drama. Ramada Inn, what a classic this will become, and the analog time warp classics of Cinnamon Girl and Mr Soul, how solid and powerful were they.

And I reckon Neil & Poncho interacted with the crowd more than I have seen before, they were both humorous, gesturing with the crowd and joking with each other. And the horse huddles were not too much, this is how they interplay and to experience how they work it with each other was really a treat. Maybe you need to be down front to really appreciate all this, and to actually see and feel how they play together. Hey, but that's where rock n roll is, in the mosh (not so moshy with all the oldies), but not to be sitting back in some far-away stand where you can’t really feel the muse and see what the band is doing. Its all part of the experience; seeing and feeling how they interact. Neil’s voice was great and the harmonies from Billy and Poncho, wow much better than expected. Much, much better. And the guys are looking good too! And it was good to actually see Ralph on stage after he crawled out from behind those drums, felt him all night though.

And the encore, Prisoners & Opera Star – how unexpected was that, what a treat to hear some hidden gems (even with some nuances and the odd bit of slop) from some mostly forgotten about albums (or not even known albums by the non-horse lovers). They pulled no punches here. Thumped it out till the final note came down. Clearly they were loving it and we the horse-lovers right at the front loved every second as well.

Whatever substances these guys are not on now, feed em more of it! Hopefully the horse will capture the magic they have at present and get some of their new songs recorded (am sure Neil has a bucket load stashed away in that brain of his). Can’t wait for the next album, preorder now as it will be a cracker. No doubts here, No fading away here, And it surely ain’t over. Long live the horse. Keep fuckn’ up guys!
Wonderful review AlbaN! What an experience with your son, too!

Here's another review from a non-doubter [Live Review] NEIL YOUNG | Reverb Magazine Online by Stephen Bisset.

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17 Comments:

At 3/12/2013 05:47:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great review. I watched Year of the Horse last night for the first time. I will say it is not a great film, but contains many great moments. Simply - its a mess. The band has indeed progressed in certain ways since 1996 - less serious, less self important (looking at you Poncho) and comparing F***ing Up circa 2012/13 vs 1996 might be the best way to see how some kind of lightness/humor has been added to the proceedings. Saw the boys in Seattle back in Nov and would love to see them again!! Also - struck still by the doo-wop love of harmony singing from these old coots and surprised more hasn't been commented upon this fact. They are singing better today than they ever have, live, I believe...

 
At 3/12/2013 06:22:00 PM, Blogger La Johnson said...

Prisoners is a dreadful song from a dreadful record =- am I allowed to say that?

 
At 3/12/2013 07:03:00 PM, Blogger dazz4 said...

Great review. I was at the Adelaide concert and had exactly the same reactions and feelings. I think you do need to be up close to the action (as I was)to really experience what Neil & Crazy Horse are all about. To see their interaction with each other and with the audience really made it a great night for me, and those around me. Let's hope we get some new music out of the guys whilst they are firing on all cylinders.

 
At 3/12/2013 07:18:00 PM, Blogger Phill said...

"Ramada Inn, what a classic this will become"...

Yes, yes indeed. I've still got this song buzzing around my head from the Adelaide gig. It's fast becoming my favourite "new" Neil Young song after "Over and Over". It's clearly a very personal song to Neil; the power with which he sung it was something to behold.

Great review.

 
At 3/12/2013 07:41:00 PM, Blogger Phill said...

I'd have to agree with La Johnson on this: "Life" was pretty dire.

Man, I'm doing a lot of agreeing here...

 
At 3/12/2013 09:56:00 PM, Blogger TonyACT said...

"Prisoners is a dreadful song from a dreadful record =- am I allowed to say that?"

Sure you can say it - but I don't agree with it. Happier if you said "I think that .... etc".

I love the song and like the album, but then I also like Landing on Water :)

So many folks on the internet seem to feel that their opinion is the objective truth.

 
At 3/12/2013 10:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes, LA, I think we are all permitted to have views on individual songs and individual albums. For example, I kinda like Life, if for no other reason than it followed Neil's only true bonafide flop: namely, Landing on water errrr thud. Life was also the new stuff they played on the amazing third best garage band tour of 1986, so I am biased. Neil admits that this was a difficult transition period for him, but Life was crucial in that transition, and we all know that Freedom and Ragged Glory were soon to follow...

 
At 3/12/2013 10:56:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And I am also deeming anybody who admits to liking Landing on Water to be a doubter :))

cause not even the most passionate believer could find good in one of the worst CDs by any artist in the 1980's - bad songs, bad performances, and utterly shamelessly bad production...

Question: how many songs from LOW have actually been played live...seriously...I'm curious...

 
At 3/13/2013 02:58:00 AM, Blogger Greg Mantho said...

"Prisoners is a dreadful song from a dreadful record- am I allowed to say that?"

La, how about: Prisoners is a song I don't like, from an album I don't like? This works for me, I don't demand that you like it, and don’t mind you saying it. I might want to know why you think so, and might want to give my reasons for liking it, but it's all fair game, as long as we take the black and white out of it.

Maybe you don't mean it this way, but the way you have stated your opinion makes it sound that because you don't like it, you are demanding that no one else like it either. I'm not trying to be in your face here, but because you think it is dreadful, does not mean that it is. I like the song and the album, so what do we do now? We've been over this so many times, I don't know how else to say it. I think liver is disgusting, my parents absolutely love it. It's personal preference, period. It doesn't have to be the same thing to everyone.

But while you have me thinking of it, my favorite memory of Prisoners is teaching two of my nieces to sing it one time. It seemed very fitting for some reason... I loved telling my step dad the back story of the song, as he played it for my nieces on his record player. He couldn't get over the picture I painted for him of the owner of a record company, faced with the inevitable moment of having to sit down and listen to the record his label was about to put out, and for the first time hearing the crude, petulant, and perverse Prisoners delivering a line he surely has never forgotten: "We don't want to be watered down, taking orders from record company clowns." As for the rest of Life, I love it for many of its incredible moments, e.g. Long Walk Home, Inca Queen, When Your Lonely Heart Breaks. I also will always associate it with the great concert of the same name, remote control rats running around stage and all.

Just sayin'.

A Friend Of Yours


 
At 3/13/2013 03:05:00 AM, Blogger Greg Mantho said...

I guess I should have stated that my comment above can apply to any song or album Neil or anyone else has ever put out- starting with Life... and Landing On Water.

A Friend Of Yours

 
At 3/13/2013 03:45:00 AM, Blogger Peter D said...

@ anonymous 10:56
Well... let's see and compare it to a random album from what many consider one of the best period's of Neils career: 'Amercian Stars 'n Bars', an album that even features one of his most popular songs ever, Like A Hurricane.

We'll find that from the ASNB album 2 songs have never been played, from LAW a mere 4.
Than we see that from ASNB 4 songs have never been played more than 10x. LAW 2
Than we see that from ASNB 3 songs have been played more than 10x, of wich LAH, a real 'hit', over 500x.

If we take the 'hit' out, which I think is not completely unfair considering there are not so many albums with 'hits' on it, and we calculate the average... LAW scores 18,3 and ASNB 18,2
(and I just PICKED an album not knowing this).

And we have to consider that ASNB is over 20 years older so songs COULD have been played much more... LAH is.

I firmly state: LAW is a full grown Neil album of which he shouldn't and most certainly isn't ashamed!


(source sugarmtn.org)

LANDING ON WATER
Violent side 49 x
Hippie dream 52 x
Bad news beat 9x
Touch the night 45x
Hard luck stories 2x
I got a problem 26x

Drifter 0x
Pressure 0x
Weight of the world 0x
People on the streets 0x

AMERICAN STARS 'N BARS

The Old Country Waltz 9x
Saddle Up the Palomino 10x
Hold Back the Tears 10x
Bite the Bullet 50x
Star of Bethlehem 3x
Like a Hurricane 502x
Homegrown 82x

Hey Babe 0x
Will to Love 0x

 
At 3/13/2013 06:06:00 AM, Blogger Aquila said...

Question: how many songs from LOW have actually been played live...seriously...I'm curious...

According to Sugar Mountain setlists .. 6

Violent Side [49 times]
Hippie Dream [52 times]
Bad News Beat [9 times]
Touch The Night [45 times]
Hard Luck Stories [2 times]
I Got A Problem [26 times]

 
At 3/13/2013 06:54:00 AM, Blogger La Johnson said...

OK 'I think that Life is a dreadful record'...'you need to be up close to the action' ....that's a tall order for the souless corporate building masquerading as a concert hall.....O2 London Arena

 
At 3/13/2013 06:56:00 AM, Blogger La Johnson said...

'Over & Over' is 20 years old not new?

 
At 3/13/2013 08:07:00 AM, Anonymous pete said...

It was extremely disappointing to read the crap superficial tabloid review in newcastle herald after wineries concert. But that sparked outrage from fans who far outnumbered the smattering of people who seemed to think Neil should always play country rock and didnt figure out that Crazy Horse meant the opposite. Would these same people boo Dylan for not playing The Times They are a-changing forty years on instead of letting the artist paint new pictures? Grow up people respect artists like Neil of such obvious high calibre. I love his quiet music too but I love his rock equally if not more so. He is not listed at about 30 in top rock guitarists of all time by Rolling Stone for nothing.

 
At 3/13/2013 08:43:00 AM, Blogger Phill said...

"'Over & Over' is 20 years old not new?"

I know. Where has that time gone?

I was being ironic by the way, hence the "new" in quotation marks.

 
At 3/13/2013 09:48:00 PM, Blogger TonyACT said...

Peter D - thanks for the comparison - interesting stuff there; and also to La - nice update.

Also, according to what I have read, Touch the Night did pretty well on the charts? - and also has a pretty funny video clip.

So, yes, LAW is, for me, nothing like the turkey legend would suggest. I particularly like Violent Side and Hard Luck Stories.

 

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