Not fade away

I went with friends to see a Neil Young solo show at the Chicago Theater last night. Good sound, and Neil’s voice was surprisingly strong. He can’t hit all the old high notes, but he hits most of them and has figured out ways around the ones he can’t.

The set list on this tour doesn’t seem to change much from show to show. Same songs, different order, except for the opener:

His “Down by the River” was blistering. Without a backing band, he didn’t go for contemplative interludes, as he did in this clip:

The only disappointment was “After the Gold Rush” played on a pump organ, which was a little too circus-like. I was hoping he’d play it on piano.

It wasn’t just an oldies show; at least half the songs were fairly recent. Despite the continued calls from an idiot behind me, he didn’t play “Cowgirl,” nor did he acknowledge the bizarre request for “Wooden Ships.”

Sometimes you do wonder whether an IQ test should be given before allowing admission.