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Friday, May 01, 2009

A NYA Blu-Ray Preview

Neil Young Archives Preview Blu-Ray Disc

Well, do you beleive in miracles? There are actual sightings of Neil Young fans with copies of Archives Preview Blu-Ray Discs in their hands. Apparently, shipments started this week and have been hitting mailboxes over the past few days.

Here's a preview report from Scott Waller in Nashville, TN:
Many of us have waited patiently for the Neil Archives for almost 20 years. We have learned to take most updates and tentative release dates with a grain of salt.

Well, I must say that when the Archives were made available for pre-order on his record label's site, I saw this as a big step forward, so I took the plunge and preordered my BluRay copy. Pre Order customers are supposed to receive a "Preview Disk" before the Archives set hits the streets. I received my pre-order Preview Disk in the mail yesterday (04/29/09).

Time to dive into the Archives Preview disk, and give you a little review.

Format: BluRay (PS3 player, connected to the internet)
Time: 48:15 minutes:seconds

After it starts up, there are new materials to download.

The Time Line menu bar is here. You can go all the way back to 1940, and see highlights of his youth, class photos, when he formed his early bands, world historical events. The first "active" material is early 1965 during his Squires years. "I Wonder" by the Squires. Audio over still photos of the band. WOW....this is the origins of his Zuma tune "Don't Cry No Tears".....

The Time Line menu carry's on thru the years...and I'll skip its events, up to the end of 1973. Many events identified thru this time.
Next, the Biography. Full family historical info, just like in his father's book "Neil and Me". Just one page though, just to give you a taste.

Disc Credits - one page.

Song Selection - this takes you to the Filing Cabinet menu system that you probably have seen before. Songs included on this sampler, and the multimedia:

Aurora multimedia includes first known picture of the band together, as well video of Neil explaining how he wrote the music out and mailed it to himself to save his copywright protection. Wise beyond his years, even at an early age! There's a review from his highschool newspaper, a radio station play list and a photo of the 45" single.

Sultan - audio, video of Neil showing him open the actual letter he mailed to himself in July 1963. This envelope has never been
opened. Also, pictures of the original recorded tape box and the 45.

These are the remaining songs on this sampler, all with the similar collections of multimedia goodies that I noted in Aurora and Sultan.

Songs: I Wonder, Mustang, I'll Love You Forever, I Can't Cry, Hello Lonely Woman, Casting Me Away From You, There Goes My Babe, Sugar Mountain, Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing, Runaround Babe, The Ballad of Peggy Grover, The Rent is Always Due, Extra Extra.

Navigation throughout the whole application is very intuitive.

So there is a factual review of the Archives Sampler disk. You do get a sense of why this has been so many years in the making.

Do the Archives seem any closer to a reality? They do to me....I think its time to let go and actually get excited about the Archives.

Scott Waller - Nashville, TN

Thanks Scott!

So, is it possible that hell just might really freeze over on June 2???


If you believe in miracles, then this article on The Blu-Ray Bandwagon may be of interest.

As for us here at Thrasher's Wheat? We're not on the bandwagon. yet. Because, we have all been here before. We have all been here before. We have all been here before.

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At 5/02/2009 03:15:00 AM, Anonymous dr dip said...

Well, that,s interesting Scott about the timeline starting in the early years from 1940....just a twinkle in Scott and Rassy's eye heh!...unless my maths is crap!that makes Neil about -5 years old !

At 5/02/2009 10:28:00 AM, Blogger Doonerak said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 5/02/2009 10:29:00 AM, Blogger Doonerak said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 5/02/2009 11:08:00 AM, Blogger Thrasher said...

Thanks LRR!

There's no re-edit. But you should be able to delete your post and then re-post. See little trash can icon.

Be sure to c&p 1st.


At 5/02/2009 11:36:00 AM, Anonymous Scott W. said...

Yes, the first photo on the timeline was a wedding picture of Scott and Rassy. Then there was a pic of Neil after he was born.

This is "Disk 0" so it is a sampler. I want them to leave some surprises so I hope this is just a taste of what is on the real Disk 1.

As far as showing you how it works, how you navigate, all the different multimedia on the collection, the time it took to put it together - well it accomplishes that extremely well, imho.

And like I said, for me, this is the first true step past the pipe dreams of release dates and broken promises we've heard for 10+ years.

Scott W.

At 5/02/2009 01:03:00 PM, Anonymous Paul said...

But OMG the sound quality. I played mine on a PS3 through a Pioneer Elite receiver (HDMI) into DefTech speakers at the full 192Khz PCM. I can't believe anything this old can sound this good.

Neil was right on the BluRay thing also. You 'listen' to this in a different way. You can randomly navigate around the material for each track, getting there from multiple places, while the full res track is playing. It's noticeably different and I like it.

At 5/02/2009 04:34:00 PM, Blogger tim said...

I'm not getting the preview disc since I ordered the Archives on Blu-ray from I'm also not getting a PS3 but will get a Sony BDPS350 instead. Any of you have this along with the preview disc? If so how is it working?

At 5/02/2009 05:12:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Here's the type of stuff I was hoping we'd see..."

-Busking in Subway
Well, that one is from 1976, so that wouldn't be on this first installment anyway.

-Wim VanderLinden (Stratford)We do get that one Doonerak. Neil and his crew have re-written history, changed the date and called it 'Massey Hall'.

Most of the rest of your list are freely available in 'decent' quality in trading circles, as you are obviously aware. So their inclusion on the Archives would be more for upgrade purposes for the fanatics like us. I'm personally hoping for video material that none of us already know about, or have in our collection.

At 5/02/2009 06:13:00 PM, Anonymous expecting2fly said...

Archives download question: I'm pretty sure I read here that a purchase of the Blu-Ray or DVD versions would entitle one to download mp3's of the Archives music. However, I cannot find any information on these downloads at or Does anyone know where it's definitively stated that BR/DVD purchase entitles one to download the mp3's?


At 5/02/2009 11:19:00 PM, OpenID insidetherain said...

I just say, "As for us here at Thrasher's Wheat? We're not on the bandwagon. yet. Because, we have all been here before. We have all been here before. We have all been here before." - what an amazing ending.

I love Thrasher's Wheat!

At 5/02/2009 11:55:00 PM, Blogger Doonerak said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 5/02/2009 11:57:00 PM, Blogger Doonerak said...


So Disk0 contains 2 "latter day" video clips? I was really hoping for no more than 1 per disk so that we would get more contemporaneous film among the 20 clips reported to be offered.

Here's the type of stuff I was hoping we'd see. Granted, it's not to be expected on the Preview Disk...but you can see that they add up to more than the 20 which Archives Guy said were on the set.

-Springfield Hollywood Palace
-Live Solo Feenjon Café NYC - The Loner/Cinnamon Girl Medley
-Guitar Lesson in Central Park
-Bootleg Store Nashville
-WimVanderLinden Show (w/Louis Avilla on Ranch)
-WimVanderLinden Show (Out On A Weekend on Ranch)
-Wim VanderLinden (Stratford)
-Johnny Cash Live On Campus
-BBC Concert
-Elliot Mazer Archives Barn Interview
-Harvest Field Interview
-A Man Needs A Maid Session
-There's A World Session
-Jack Nitsche Jamming in the Barn
-Alabama Session
-Are You Ready For The country Session
-Words Session
-JTTP Trailer
-Southern Man CSNY Live Fillmore East
-Ohio CSNY Live Fillmore East
-Down By The River - CSNY Music Scene
-CSNY Big Sur Sea Of Madness


At 5/03/2009 04:29:00 AM, Blogger Harm said...

Indeed LLR, this alone is worth the extra money for the Blu-Ray! I have most of that, if not all, on bootlegs, but would love to see official release of it.

At 5/03/2009 08:45:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neil did mention finding new material for download. The new I Wonder. And what's this stuff about the last Buffalo Springfield concert? Could that be video content? It's not on the tracklist.

I dont think you need to worry Doonerak. There will be lots of new video and plenty of old.
It seems like around 1970 he starts using the camera a lot.


At 5/03/2009 12:20:00 PM, Blogger Doonerak said...

Speculation is that something from the last BS concert at Long Beach is represented on the Archives as a track called: "Thie Is It!" source is UNCUT magazine's Archives Preview article. Since those guys had a copy of a tracklisting but not a copy of the disks themselves, we think this is one of the "Hidden Tracks". Someone here also claimed to have a pdf of the tracklisting which also listed the 12 hidden tracks.

At 5/03/2009 12:22:00 PM, Blogger Doonerak said...

Anon...yeah...Neil in the subway was '76. Somehow I got my wires crossed. It's been happening a LOT since the baby was born. :-)

It would be nice to get everything we know about in an upgrade for completist purposes but clearly Surprises we don't already know about would set this deal off!

There's already one surprise developing as reported on RUST. And assuming this is a SPOILER THREAD here goes.....

There are 3 versions of "I Wonder" presented on Disk0, including the BD-Live download.

At 5/03/2009 01:17:00 PM, Anonymous painter said...

Can you help me folks? I have a question.
Now I haven't yet any blueray player, but I'm looking for.
I wouldn't buy the PS3 console (too much €...). My doubt is: if I buy a computer BD-DVD player can I access all the downloads? is the same thing or are there any differences between different players? (with a hard-disk & a web connection of course)

At 5/03/2009 02:32:00 PM, Anonymous Scott W. said...

painter - The BD-DVD players you are looking for need the BD-Live feature. Now how much info can they hold - I am not sure. I found some quick info here:

Scott W.

At 5/03/2009 04:05:00 PM, Anonymous Dave Rustbucket said...

Mike expecting2fly asked:

Does anyone know where it's definitively stated that BR/DVD purchase entitles one to download the mp3's?

On the pre-order page, click on Neil sitting in the white car above the 'Add to Cart' button

It says 'Includes a physical card with instructions to download mp3s of all the audio tracks.
Available through'

So no downloads from i-tunes then.


At 5/03/2009 07:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are the download cards only available through Neil's site, or will they also be included in sets sold in stores?

At 5/04/2009 08:00:00 AM, Blogger Doonerak said...

Hey AG-

Incase you're back....Is this Preview Disk the exact content of the true Disk0? Looks like it deliberately has different artwork and folks are mentioning that the timeline, apart from a BD-L download is largely non-interactive and non-zoomable. I seem to recall a "magnifying glass" function from the preview videos for zooming. I also thought the entire point of the timeline was that it was highly interactive to step through the story "in days" as Neil mentioned at JavaOne about a year back.


Just wondering. LRR

At 5/04/2009 01:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The preview disc is exactly the same as Disc 0, but with a different sleeve. It has gone out to pre-order customers and reviewers.

The Timeline does zoom via the magnifying glass to whatever the time period is of the disc you are on.
You will see more Timeline features on later discs and a more advanced version is in development for Volume 2.

I'll find out about the mp3 download card question. My guess is that you get it with BD or DVD matter where ya buy from. The preview disc and limited edition 45 are the bonuses for orders.

-Archives Guy (traveling and to lazy to sign in via his phone)

At 5/04/2009 06:01:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here that.
Archives Guy just leaked the first info on Volume 2.

Well now you have me curious. Come June 3rd we should bombard AG with V2 questions.

I view V1 a 'A New Hope' and V2
as 'The Empire Strikes Back'

At 5/04/2009 11:12:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Volume 2= Revenge Of The Ditch

At 5/05/2009 02:31:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look At All The Things isn't one of the 12 hidden tracks. That sucks!!

At 5/05/2009 09:04:00 AM, Anonymous Bill said...

Not sure if many have seen this link to an overview of Vol. 1. Clash MusicBill
Lakin Report

At 5/05/2009 11:10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any missing songs can always how up later thru BD-Live.

Ya got to think that there is a reason why the Blu-ray version is being pushed so hard. the B-Live keeps the collection growing.

At 5/07/2009 09:15:00 AM, Anonymous Doug said...

Hello. A bit late to the party but I got my disc a few days ago. Overall, I'm very impressed. The box is going to be fantastic. Kudos to everybody involved. You all have outdone yourselves. The experience is pretty smooth on my computer. Not 100% perfect but quite acceptable, especially for a first cut at the BD-J code.

By the way, has anybody found the hidden goodies yet? There are two hidden songs on the disc and possibly some hidden video. I haven't figured out how to bring them up yet. (How do I know they exist? My little secret.)

At 5/09/2009 09:21:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two of the files have roach clips on 'em and you'll find your "hidden goodies"


At 5/10/2009 12:50:00 AM, Anonymous THOMAS VIOLAGIS said...

alot of people w/ a negative vibe..
the preview disk was amazing...
and it was a tease...again....
it's all about the sound...
it's truly mind blowing...
the photos, documents, news clippings...real time tape decks, reel to reel machines, record players, notebooks w/lyrics...
as a purist...i wish that everything would be included in this format....
as in the original albums....
the archives will supply
big chuncks of it
(sorry bad vibe dude)...
but not all of it...
so I expect that after the archives,
will come the complete albums...
in this magnificent format...
for those of us interested...
for those who don't want to spend the money...
it's cool,
but why not keep it to yourself?....
i'm broke and can't wait to give Neil more of my money....
might be foolish to you
but that is my business,
not yours....
so keep it to yourself...
the teaser bluray disk was
a one hour amusement park ride....
i've taken it 5 times in 2 days....
i cant wait for volume one.....
go bum someone else out...
for everyone else...
peace & popsicles
Thomas Violagis

At 5/14/2009 06:34:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Archives Guy

I have just received my preview of disc 0.

You say in your post above that "The Timeline does zoom via the magnifying glass to whatever the time period is of the disc you are on"

Even though it automatically magnifies a little bit when you first enter the timeline, I still can't read a thing! It really needs an option to zoom in further.

I can't read any of the words on the letters or other documents in the individual song folders, either! Very frustrating.

I have a standard definition TV, by the way.

Is there any way you can introduce this function via a Bluray live update?

At 5/14/2009 11:42:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

in reply to the question about the Timeline.

I'm sorry to hear that you are having difficulty reading the Timeline. This is the first such report that we have had.

The Timeline cannot be changed in any way, however if your TV has a zoom function on the remote you could move in further to read details.

I suspect that the issue here is that you are watching on an older standard def TV. Since the resolution is low it might make small text hard to view. I'm not asking you to by a new TV, but this might be the issue behind your problem.

-Archives Guy

At 5/21/2009 05:38:00 PM, Blogger Robert said...

Where are the hidden tracks?
So far I have found the first one by accessing the roach clip by track 5 "I'll Love you Forever" but "Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing" by the Springfield I cannot find.

At 5/21/2009 05:59:00 PM, Blogger Robert said...

Found it. Another roach clip to the left of "Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing" Tremendous. I predict no sleep for the whole of June.

At 5/22/2009 05:45:00 PM, Blogger JK said...

"Hidden" things I've found (some not so much hidden but more "missed" in my desire to see everything!). Most of these things are not particularly hidden once you sit down and indulge in the process of exploring the disc properly.

Track 1 Aurora (and same at Track 2 Sultan)
Within "Documents": small link to video clip of Neil opening letter and chatting about copyright.

Track 5: I'll love you forever:
Audio tape log (hidden behind song sheet). 2 clips.
Roach clip (clip is on left side of folder with white feather): Takes you to an extra version of I Wonder.
A further audio tape log behind song sheet for I Wonder.

Track 6: (I'm a Man and) I Can't Cry:
Another audio tape log

Track 11: Clancy
Roach clip this time on the right. Takes you to an extra version of Clancy by Buffalo Springfield.
Audio Tape log about "Who was Clancy?" from this extra version (again, in behind the song sheet).

Downloaded content from timeline - Another version of I Wonder (total of 3 now).

That's it I think.


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