Here’s the Milwaukee Journal’s review of Neil Young’s performance Sunday night, July 5 at the Marcus Amphitheater on the Summerfest grounds along Lake Michigan in Milwaukee. The tour is backed by Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real.
Next stop is Red Rocks in Denver, Colorado July 8 and 9. See tour schedule at: http://www.bad-news-beat.org/tour-dates
Written by music critic Piet Levy, with photos by Rick Wood, Piet said while the crowd may have been braced for a lecture, they did not receive one.
“The first sight on stage may have confirmed some fears, as two people dressed as farmers tossed seeds onto the stage and watered sunflowers. But it was actually a ruse to distract the audience as Young sneaked behind a battered piano for “After the Gold Rush,” from the 1970 album of the same name. That, too, is a song with a message — ‘Look at mother nature on the run’ he sings — but the surreal words are captivating.
“So was the presence of the hunched-over rocker, dressed in black — including a wide-brimmed hat that concealed his face — as a lone spotlight beamed down from above him. It was a simple image, but powerful; the most striking visual I saw during all of Summerfest, or at any concert this year. It suggested Young wasn’t going to be a lecturer; he was going to be a showman.
“That he was, performing “Heart of Gold” and “Old Man” within the first few minutes on acoustic guitar. Watching him perform the latter with quiet anguish — his face visible for the first time Sunday as he lifted his head, veins snaking across the back of his wrinkled left hand as he strummed the guitar — took on greater resonance.
“After performing a mesmerizing “Mother Earth (Natural Anthem)” on organ, men in hazmat suits appeared, spraying the stage with “pesticide.” But again, the show wasn’t making a statement so much as preparing the stage for Real’s entrance (along with Lukas’ brother Micah).”
The only thing Neil said to the audience the first 75 minutes was, “How are ya?” And when Young did play two of “Monsanto”‘s preachiest tracks, “People Want to Hear About Love” and “A New Day for Love,” people just wanted to hear Young sing, no matter what it was he was singing about.
Print deadlines prevented a full review of Young’s set. The show ran about two hours and 45 minutes.
Setlist from Tom Hambleton at Sugarmountain.org:
Marcus Amphitheatre, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
w/ Promise Of The Real
01. After The Gold Rush (solo)
02. Heart Of Gold (solo)
03. Long May You Run (solo)
04. Old Man (solo)
05. Mother Earth (solo)
06. Hold Back The Tears
07. Out On The Weekend
08. Unknown Legend
09. Peace Of Mind
10. Field Of Opportunity
11. Wolf Moon
12. Harvest Moon
14. Flying On The Ground Is Wrong
15. Walk On
16. People Want To Hear About Love
17. A New Day For Love
18. Down By The River
19. Big Box
20. A Rock Star Bucks A Coffee Shop
21. White Line
22. Workin’ Man
23. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
24. Monsanto Years
25. If I Don’t Know
26. Love And Only Love
27. Don’t Be Denied
28. Double E
Tour: 2015 Rebel Content Tour
Band: Promise Of The Real