Many tribute releases tend to suffer from an excess of adulation, often reducing them to the level of sing-a-longs by professionals. Instrumentalists tend to be less hidebound by these considerations, and that’s the case with Run Neil Run, where the Sisters Euclid profoundly re-think 10 Neil Young tunes by twisting them in an off-kilter direction.
It doesn’t disappoint, and the reason is the guitar pyrotechnics of Kevin Breit, the looming presence behind Sisters Euclid. Breit has an encyclopedic grasp of all riffs-guitar or otherwise-that have come along over the last 80 years. His own ideas are quirky, adventurous, expansive, and invariably touched by Blues, Rock, Latin, Country, Pop and Classical influences. It’s all filtered through his distinctive style, so something emerges that is always intriguing.
If Breit’s name seems familiar, it’s probably because you’ve heard him on an album or two by k.d. lang, Cassandra Wilson, or Norah Jones. Sisters Euclid also feature Ian DeSouza on bass, Gary Taylor on drums ,and Rob Gusevs on keyboards, and they’ve developed a cult following at Toronto’s Orbit Room.
This is a sensational listen. Much of the credit is due Breit who stretches out the melodies with his nifty slide, and then creates a series of moods that slowly build into a climax.
There’s a raft of well-known Young tunes like "Southern Man", "Harvest Moon", "Ohio", "Cinnamon Girl" and "Heart Of Gold". The latter is absolutely entrancing, and easily the best of the bunch. I really admired how SE handled such lesser known songs like "Love Is A Rose" and "Needle And The Damage Done".
If you’re looking for the widest possible range of sounds that can be culled from six strings, and if you also want to be transfixed by an interpretative houdini, then let Kevin Breit and crew do the trick.