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Neil Young: Live At Canterbury House, 1968

Having been around, playing music for about forty years allows a musician to be rather well documented. Since Neil Young has played an important role in two groups (Buffalo Springfield and CSNY) in addition to his lengthily solo career there’re vaults filled with his recordings.

2007 saw the release of Live at Massey Hall. It documented a solo set by Young in Toronto, incorporating material from all of his previous musical endeavors. Even if this disc hadn’t been released, Young is a proponent of taping shows, so there’s really no shortage of raw performance tape from this gentleman. Massey Hall sold pretty well, specifically in Canada, but given the economic climate today, it’s a bit confusing that another live Young set has been released.

Sugar Mountain (Live At Canterbury House, 1968) does differ from its predecessor in two ways. One, there’s a DVD included. But the DVD is simply the footage that the audio comes from. There doesn’t appear to be a great deal of extra anything included. The second difference is the time that this material comes from. Young would actually be transformed in the next few years after this show as a result of drug problems as well as the death of a friend leading to his sometimes uneven mid ‘70s output. But in 1968, Young had released just one solo disc, a rather sparse affair, but one that pointed to his future. So while, this material isn’t unique or even necessarily astounding (after all how much can a man and a guitar do?), it does lend context to Young’s career. Perhaps Sugar Mountain just shows a more optimistic man amidst the violent year that was 1968.

Tracklisting: 01 - On The Way Home 02 - Mr. Soul 03 - Expecting To Fly 04 - The Last Trip To Tulsa 05 - The Loner 6 Birds 07 - Winterlong 08 - Out Of My Mind 09 - If I Could Have Her Tonight 10 - Sugar Mountain 11 - I've Been Waiting For You 12 - Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing 13 - The Old Laughing Lady 14 - Broken Arrow