Reviews: Neil Young, Foo Fighters, Dustin Lynch, Cliff Richard, Sam Smith, Brad Paisley

Music journalists deliver their impressions on Neil Young in Portland, Ore., Foo Fighters in Memphis, Dustin Lynch in Ames, Iowa, Cliff Richard in Glasgow, Sam Smith in Columbus, Ohio, and Brad Paisley in West Palm Beach.

Neil Young @ Earle Chiles Center in Portland, Ore. – “To Young’s credit, in the entire three-hour set, there were no extended between-song rants, but there hardly needed to be – not when the new songs include lyrics like, ‘Supreme Court in session made a new law/GMO seeds and patents had a fatal flaw/Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas worked for Monsanto!’” – Matthew Singer / Willamette Week

Foo Fighters @ FedExForum in Memphis, Tenn. – “Grohl has become America’s foremost rock and roll ringleader in an era when these rituals and riffs are increasingly hard to come by at this level.” – Chris Herrington / The Commercial Appeal

Photo: Scott Legato /
DTE Energy Music Theatre, Clarkston, Mich.

Dustin Lynch @ Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa – “Dustin Lynch commanded the stage Tuesday night with great showmanship and was sure to please any country music fan in attendance.” – Parker Reed / Iowa State Daily

Cliff Richard @ Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow, Scotland – “The show really started to take off when he was joined by his two dapper backing singers/guitarists for a box step routine on the antique pop curiosity ‘Living Doll,’ while the peachy keen innocence of ‘Summer Holiday’ and ‘The Young Ones’ provided true nostalgic escapism.” – Fiona Shepherd / The Scotsman

Photo: dpa, Markus Scholz/AP, file
During the first show of his European tour at the O2-Arena in Hamburg, Germany.

Sam Smith @ Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio – “Any doubts that his pipes weren’t up to par were fast dispelled. Smith and his octave-jumping falsetto breezed comfortably through an 80-minute show that showcased his 2014 debut record, In the Lonely Hour, a multiplatinum effort that this year nabbed four Grammy awards, including record of the year.” – Kevin Joy / The Columbus Dispatch

Brad Paisley @ Perfect Vodka Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach, Fla. – “Switching guitars more frequently than award show hosts switch their gowns, Paisley proved to be fun, silly at times, but talented as all hell. His flaunted his guitar chops, especially during his brief rendition of Jimmy Hendrix’s ‘Foxy Lady’ and into his goofily endearing ‘Ticks.’” – Natalya Jones / Broward New Times – Palm Beach