Live In New York City

Paul Simon

Hear Music, 2012

http://www.paulsimon.com

REVIEW BY: Curtis Jones

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 01/24/2013

Ever wonder why there are so many rock musicians in their seventies who are still actively performing and producing new music? It's because baby boomers are still buying the stuff. At age 71, Paul Simon is still kicking and still doing his part to add to the aging musicians catalog.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

My crack about age notwithstanding, there is still some great music to be had from these musicians. Let the record show that I am a huge fan of new music from stars of the ‘60s and ‘70s, and Paul Simon’s latest studio work, So Beautiful Or So What, is probably his best effort since Rhythm Of The Saints.  But Live In New York City is a nostalgic undertaking, with Simon plowing through his back catalog and trying to interlace some new tunes into the set. The effort sounds good enough, with an intimate setting at the Webster Hall in New York City. But there is a sense of the main set being something of a cold reflex, not quite to the point of being the last nervous muscle memory twitches that come from a lifeless corpse, but definitely the sounds of a professional needing to get through the night and produce and album and a PBS special. The best part of the album is the encore set, which contains “The Sounds Of Silence,” “Kodachrome,” “Gone At Last,” “Late In The Evening,” and “Still Crazy After All These Years.”  Here Simon sounds real, like he actually wants to play these songs for the audience.

Live albums often have the tinge of just being greatest hits albums that are released as money makers. Live In New York City definitely has that feel as well. The music is good, but the whole package is lacking some indefinable quality.

Rating: C-

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