ACL Live Shot: Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Zilker Park, Oct. 13
Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., Oct. 19, 2012
When ol' Neil gets together with Crazy Horse, the results are fairly predictable. There will be lots of crunchy guitar, several jams of indeterminate length, a couple of new songs, and feedback galore. This nearly two-hour set didn't disappoint. Although only the most jaded would complain about Young skipping "Like a Hurricane," things kicked off with a 16-minute rendition of "Love and Only Love," the quartet seemingly circling each other, feeling each other out, before meeting toe-to-toe and setting the dial to "rage." And rage they did, except for a two-song solo acoustic break comprised of the neverending tribute to deceased Crazy Horse guitarist Danny Whitten ("The Needle and the Damage Done"), and a new song, "Twisted Road." There were several previously unheard tunes from the upcoming Psychedelic Pill, in fact. Most notable was the stomping "Walk Like a Giant," which ended with nearly five minutes of loud stop-and-start, mimicking, perhaps, that walking giant. They also reached back for oldies "Cinnamon Girl" and "Down by the River," each still strong and representative of the two sides of Crazy Horse, with unforgettable riffs and psychedelic undercurrents. Fittingly, "Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)" ended the night. Young and his Horse look a little haggard, paunchy, and more than a little gray, but together they ensure "rock & roll will never die."