Forest Hills Stadium
Queens, NY
May 14, 2024

Church Audio CA-14 cardioid mics (4.7k mod) > Church Audio ugly battery box > Sony PCM-A10 > WAV (24/48) > Izotope RX 9 (de-click filter to reduce close clapping) > Sound Studio (very light dynamic compression to reduce loud audience noise, tracking) > WAV (16/44)

Recorded and mastered by neil d

01 Cortez the Killer
02 Cinnamon Girl
03 Scattered (Let's Think About Livin')
04 Like a Hurricane
05 Don't Cry No Tears
06 Vampire Blues
07 The Losing End (When You're On)
08 Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
09 Powderfinger
10 Love and Only Love
11 Comes a Time
12 Heart of Gold
13 Human Highway (aborted)
14 technical difficulties
15 Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)
16 encore
17 Sedan Delivery
18 Rockin' in the Free World

Neil Young: vocals, electric and acoustic guitar
Billy Talbot: bass, backing vocals
Ralph Molina: drums
Micah Nelson: guitar, backing vocals

My first Neil show in 11 years, and second in 35 years, and I couldn’t have asked for a better one: great band, great setlist featuring classics and relatively deep cuts, and the predicted rainstorm was limited to a light drizzle in a few places. When I made my first-ever concert tape of Neil in 1983, I did not expect that 41 years later I would still be seeing and recording him, let alone that he would still be in such fine form at age 78.

The main flaw in this recording was a flaw in the show itself: Toward the end of the main set, as Neil finished off his solo acoustic take on “Human Highway,” the sound abruptly cut out. A few seconds later, it came back, and he picked up where he left off, then it cut out again. He finally gave up on the song, strapped on Old Black, and summoned Crazy Horse back to the stage, lifting his guitar to his mouth and saying — into the pickups — something like “How’s the electricianist coming?” They then kicked into “My My, Hey Hey,” though the sound continued to fluctuate throughout the song, cutting out again a couple of times. (During one of these, Micah Nelson flipped his guitar about ten feet in the air, drawing applause from the crowd.) The encores went off without mishap, then Neil waved goodbye and stalked off the stage, clearly unhappy with the technical issues. Still a great show, if a weird ending.

This was recorded from almost dead center toward the front of the grandstand, and the AT-853 cards (and the Forest Hills sound system) did a surprisingly good job of keeping it from sounding too distant. (And of keeping the insanely chatty guys behind and to the left of me mostly in the background.) There are a very few very brief moments of low wind noise, which probably won’t be noticeable unless you’re listening closely on headphones. And an overly assertive vendor adds the lyrics “Beer, seltzer!” to “Comes a Time,” which I’m pretty sure wasn’t in the original. Otherwise, this sounds better than it did live from my location, if anything.