14 October 2012

Neil Young and Crazy Horse live in bed

Life does not get much better that this.

It had been a good Saturday evening watching a local band in a local pub then going to another local pub for a nightcap before settling in to bed around 2am.

Going to bed these days means a quick look at my new iPad (what are they going to call it when the next one comes out?) to check on my Words with Friends games and to check on the state of the world as reported on Twitter.

That was when I learnt from ThrashersWheat that a Neil Young and Crazy Horse concert was about to be streamed live from Austin, Texas. I followed the link and snuggled down in bed to watch the show.

I knew that it would be good but it was much better than that.

My previous experience of webcasts had been experimental and exciting for a technological perspective but somewhat lacking in terms of the quality of the music and video. This was completely different.

The technology has improved several fold since then. I now have BT Infinity broadband that delivers up to around 36Mbps (it varies by device) and an iPad with a retina screen to watch the bits on. The overall result was high definition picture and sound with not a hint of a skip or a pause.

With the technology working well that left me free to concentrate on the music. And that's how it should be, technology is at its best when it's invisible.

Neil Young playing live with Crazy Horse, what more is there to say? You know that means extended songs with Neil doing whatever he wants and the band following along as if it had all be rehearsed down to the last detail when you know that's not true. The first song lasted around 15 minutes, maybe more.

The concert offered up some of the expected classics (there are so many to choose from) including the most-played Powderfinger. It was also my first chance to hear some of the new songs and they sounded excellent, i.e. very much in the same vein as other Neil Young songs written with Crazy Horse in mind.

My only regret was the late hour and my lack of stamina. I watched for about an hour before the lack of sleep caught up with me and I drifted off very happy.

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