Saturday, October 14, 2006

I'll Believe It When I See It

Amazon is really trying to make it look as if Neil Young is going to start releasing his much-ballyhooed and oft-delayed "Archives" on November 14, 2006. (See here for pre-order details.)

"For years, fans of Neil Young and Crazy Horse have been waiting for an official chance to hear Crazy Horse live with original leader Danny Whitten, the insanely talented guitarist who died of a heroin overdose in late 1972, inspiring Tonight's the Night. Tuned-in fans have been awaiting this very set for at least a dozen years, as it was originally to be tacked onto the end of a Decade-style triple CD of outtakes. Thankfully, this well-recorded live set from the infamous Fillmore East was well worth the wait. Here are scorching, extended takes of 'Down by the River,' 'Winterlong,' and 'Cowgirl in the Sand,' each propelled by guitar interplay so delightful you have to keep rewinding to hear it again. In fact, bits of it seem to prefigure the ways that Richard Lloyd and Tom Verlaine would feed off each other in the band Television, only with less of a sweet edge. But the world doesn't need any more arguments that Young was a proto-punk; what the world does need is at least a dozen more releases from Neil's archives! And hopefully, with this awesome live album, the floodgates have truly been opened and there are many more to come, in the vein of Dylan's Bootleg series. This disc is worth it alone for the version of 'Wondering,' a tune not officially recorded until many years later in Neil's weird '80s rockabilly phase." --Mike McGonigal

Careful readers of this blog will recall the comparison of Verlaine/Lloyd to Young/Whitten from several months back. And, yes, I've heard this set. And, yes, it's the absolute pinnacle of electric guitar magic! I can only imagine how magnificent a professionally remastered copy will sound!!!

Track Listing:
1. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
2. Winterlong
3. Down By The River
4. Wonderin'
5. Come On Baby Let's Go Downtown

6. Cowgirl In The Sand

Now, for my two complaints:

#1. My old b**tleg of this show includes "Cinnamon Girl," and a pretty cool version of it, if I do say so myself (including Jack Nitzsche on electric piano). Why drop this cut? The acoustic set is already missing. The electric set is under 50 minutes with "Cinnamon Girl." Why drop anything at this point?

#2. It isn't going to happen anyway. Neil is predictable in one respect: he WILL delay the Archives. He's done it time and again. Pre-order? Nah...I'll wait until I know it's really true.


Blogger Beth said...

But isn't that why we love Neil?

BTW, have you ever attended one of his Bridge School Benefit concerts? I caught the 1999 show. If you haven't, you should.

7:30 PM, October 15, 2006  
Blogger haahnster said...

Beth: I've never been to a BSB. I've heard some (which, admittedly, is not the same thing), though. My most recent in-person Neil experience was FarmAid 2005, highlighted by Neil's blistering rendition of "Southern Man."

9:04 AM, October 16, 2006  
Blogger Keith Kennedy said...

Neil is as mysterious as he is lazy. So, like you, I will wait until I see it before I believe it.

But I do have faith that it's-a-comin'.

And what more do we truly have than faith?

9:18 AM, October 16, 2006  

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