Rust Never Sleeps

November 1, 2008

I suppose this only really applies to our UK readers, but hop skip and jump over to BBC4’s iplayer and re-watch their smashing smashing supergood Neil Young documentary. [Unfortunately iplayer is only availbe to those living in the UK, which is incredibly irritating, at best.] If you don’t live across the waves, or you missed the original screening last night, here are some of the condensed highlights.

1. When asked about his relationship with music, Young responded: ‘I only care about the music. It’s sad. But if you can’t see that about me, you can’t understand me.’ Throughout his career, he let friendships fall to the wayside, for better to serve his creative muse. He didn’t see it as a selfish thing, more as an imperative. It wasn’t about him, it was about the music.

2. In the ’70’s, he collaborated on a feature film with Devo- in which they played nuclear waste workers. Devo used to call Young ‘grandpa granola’. Lolz. They also had abitofajam- which resulted in the Neil Young and Crazy Horse track- ‘My My Hey Hey’. The album that track is from- ‘Rust Never Sleeps’ takes its title from a Devo promotional t-shirt.

3. Young’s 1980’s record- Trans- was a brave foray in the world of electronica, leading to mixed results. What was interesting though, was how open Young was, and is, to all new music. From the outbreak of punk rock in 1977, to the rise of electronica in the 80’s, he was always willing to follow the music, as it were. The genre didn’t really matter- just the content. These guys were one of his favourites:

Apparently, the beeb have a new Neil Young website up and running, that may well have some kind of offcuts from the documentary. Here’s fingers crossed.


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