Album Reviews

Neil Young – Live At The Cellar Door (Reprise)

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Neil Young Live At The Cellar DoorIn 1970, Neil Young played six memorable nights at Washington D.C.’s intimate Cellar Door. He may have departed from Buffalo Springfield, but he was well into his solo career, having just released After the Gold Rush a few months prior to these Cellar Door performances. Here, we’re treated with Neil, piano and acoustic guitar. Need I say more?

Pulling from his Archive Performance Series, Live At the Cellar Door offers a unique portrait of Young. A rare solo version of “Cinnamon Girl” shines with Young softening up on piano, rather than his signature sawing guitar. An interesting reflection of his time spent with Buffalo Springfield surfaces on “Expecting to Fly,” “I Am A Child” and “Flying On the Ground is Wrong.”  Songs that hadn’t yet been released pique interest: “Old Man” comes around two years before its appearance on Harvest, but what trumps on this collection is a definitive rendition of “Down By the River” wrapping up this 1970 memory brilliantly. 

So sit back and hang with Neil as he engages with both song and sharpened wit. What’s even more remarkable? The man had just turned twenty-five. Long may you run.

– Melissa Caruso

Neil Young – Live At The Cellar Door will be available on December 10th, 2013 via Reprise Records. You can stream the album here.

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