Having heard both, it’s hard to imagine Neil Young’s “Live Rust” without “Rust Never Sleeps” as one is woman to Adam’s rib – the former is forged from the latter.
Both are recorded live. “Rust Never Sleeps” does its best to pretend it’s not, while “Live Rust,” issued four months later, makes no such illusions.
Both follow a format wherein side A is acoustic and side B is electric. The difference is that while “Never Sleeps” is loaded with new material, “Live Rust” acts as a career summary to that point.
There are pleasant efforts on the front half, but the electric side with Crazy Horse is where “Live Rust” really kicks out the jams, especially with a torrid closing run. The unnecessary affectation on the final verse of “Cortez” aside, this is as good as Young’s live material gets.
Earlier, during “The Needle and the Damage Done,” thunder is heard from a rain storm, with Young encouraging fans to take cover. By the time “Like a Hurricane” shows up in the finishing stretch, the flood has metaphorically arrived.
This rivals “Live from The Fillmore East” as an essential live document for any Young fan.
Our Music Year is Daily Republic popular culture writer Nick DeCicco’s yearlong online review in 2012 of albums he had previously not listened to. The reviews will appear in print on their corresponding days during 2013. Reach him at 427-6966 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ndeciccodr.