Friday, 21 January 2011

Random Review 2011 #7 Neil Young Dreamin' Man Live '92

C7S8CD12 I think before I start this review I must confess that I have 29 Neil young CD's which isn't all of his releases but it is a fair few. so I may be somewhat biased with regard to this review.

I came to Neil Young late in life he was a bit like Bob Dylan for me, I appreciated that they are both great songwriters who both had pivotal roles in shaping popular music over the last 30 or 40 years but I struggled with their voices, and although I am ashamed to say it I preferred to listen to their music sung by others. This all changed when I bought Neil Young's Harvest in a supermarket for £3. I was blown away be the completeness of the album and the quality of the songs and the fact that Neil Young sand in a very high pitched whine (well it is admit it) didn't matter. Dylan would take a little while longer but I'm getting there (listening to Desire as I write).

Neil Young works hard to keep his music fresh, playing on his own with a full band and sometimes going totally left field releasing an album of guitar feedback (Arc) or synthesiser music (Landing On Water) that ended with his record company suing him as it didn't sound like Neil Young!

So enough of the preamble and onto the CD. Dreamin' Man is part of Archives Series with Neil Young releasing selected live concerts from his collection. This is from 1992 and it's Old Shakey (that's what they call Him) on his own with nothing more than his guitars, a piano and a harmonica to keep him company. Although I suspect the concert lasted for more than these 10 tracks, what we get is the whole of The Harvest Moon album stripped down and played beautifully by Mr Young.

The tracks are not in the order of the Harvest Moon release but it's interesting to hear the tracks stripped down to I guess how they were conceived.

The Highlight for me are the Title Track from the original album Harvest Moon and the stunning Natural Beauty 11.30 minutes where Neil Young squeezes every ounce of emotion out of the song.

If you want to try Neil Young's music this release isn't the best place to start, Harvest, or After The Gold Rush will introduce you to the Genius of Mr Young. This, although good is more for the hardcore fans collecting different versions of Neil's back catalogue.

Mark 6/10

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