13 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Live at the Cellar Door will likely go down as one of the essential live albums from Neil Young’s ever-growing archives. Recorded during a six-show stopover at a tiny Washington, D.C., club, where you can hear each individual handclap, Live at the Cellar Door is Young at his lonesome peak, accompanying himself on acoustic guitar or piano. After the Gold Rush had been released months earlier, and its songs—“Tell My Why,” “Only Love Can Break Your Heart,” “Birds," “Don’t Let It Bring You Down,” and the title track—would one day rank among his most iconic. But here he's still relatively new to them and has a freshness to his performances that can’t be faked. He previews “Old Man” (which would appear on 1972’s Harvest) and “See the Sky About to Rain” (which wouldn’t show up until 1974’s On the Beach). Songs cut with Crazy Horse—“Cinnamon Girl,” “Down by the River”—take on a naked, visceral quality that’s enhanced by the audience (which can only be heard when the music stops). Buffalo Springfield tunes and the ultra-rare “Bad Fog of Loneliness” round out this incredible set.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Live at the Cellar Door will likely go down as one of the essential live albums from Neil Young’s ever-growing archives. Recorded during a six-show stopover at a tiny Washington, D.C., club, where you can hear each individual handclap, Live at the Cellar Door is Young at his lonesome peak, accompanying himself on acoustic guitar or piano. After the Gold Rush had been released months earlier, and its songs—“Tell My Why,” “Only Love Can Break Your Heart,” “Birds," “Don’t Let It Bring You Down,” and the title track—would one day rank among his most iconic. But here he's still relatively new to them and has a freshness to his performances that can’t be faked. He previews “Old Man” (which would appear on 1972’s Harvest) and “See the Sky About to Rain” (which wouldn’t show up until 1974’s On the Beach). Songs cut with Crazy Horse—“Cinnamon Girl,” “Down by the River”—take on a naked, visceral quality that’s enhanced by the audience (which can only be heard when the music stops). Buffalo Springfield tunes and the ultra-rare “Bad Fog of Loneliness” round out this incredible set.

TITLE TIME

More By Neil Young

You May Also Like