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(more reviews coming)
The show details.
It might be a little early for me to articulate thoughts about last night's Berlin show, because I am still deeply affected by the show....
Since Neil is one of my big heros (of course), and since it's been five years since I last saw him, I was excited like a little child. I could hardly eat or communicate beforehand. : ) Lately it was clear that Neil wasn't changing his set too much, so I was afraid the element of surprise was spoiled for me. Boy, I was wrong about that! You can't tell too much about a show by solely looking at the setlist.
When Neil started the show with the incredible three-some Don't Cry No Tears, I've Been Waiting For You and Love And Only Love, it all made sense. The dynamics of the set and of the band were incredible -- very well thought out. The sound was awesome, and Neil played most amazingly during these three songs. Really, an amazing guitar sound. I freaked out during LAOL, shouting the lyrics, shaking my head in disbelief about the easiness with which neil managed to produce the most heavy, plastic-lava sounds.
Going Home was the first new song. What an epic! verses sung in the most typical Neil style, a magnificent solo after every chorus. Classic story-telling Neil!
In fact, now that the new songs start to sink in, I regard them as really strong material. Absolutely more focused than Broken Arrow. They aren't really innovative though -- they could have easily been pulled out of the archives. Like, let's say, from the Blue Notes era.
Although the lyrics of Hold You In My Arms tend to be a little cheesy at times the guitar/piano play by Neil was hilarious to watch. Imagine that, Neil sitting on a stool playing electric!
I was with my whole family and a big bunch of friends, and they all enjoyed the show. The beauty of the acoustic set, a rawking Hey Hey My My that got the crowd on its feet, a sweet Cortez, and the most cacaphonic Like A Hurricane I ever heard. And a lengthy Fuckin' Up ("it's not how you look but how you feel") -- jaw-dropping. Just...awesome. Sublime.
I loved every second. I loved the way neil walked off stage, I loved the lights which were a little bit like low key pearl jam lights. I just loved to say to myself "Dammit, this is good old Neil up there..." "It is indeed Neil..." "Man, fuck man, that's Neil, oh man!" :-)
Out of the three times I saw Neil, this was easily the best show -- even better than the Neil Jam show!
Boy this was great. I'd love to see one more show at least but I am too broke. Oh well, this will ring inside of me for quite some time now. I think I will need some weeks to get down from this. :-)
I hope it won't be another five years until he returns. I hope the great new tunes will be released soon. I am just happy there's a musician like Neil.
Anway, a fantastic show -- and I will never ever complain again about the lack of setlist variation. :-)
(new favourite Neil song: Hold You In My Arms)