So What's Really on Archives Vol. #1?
Ark of the Covenant
Last week, we blogged an Uncut blog by John Mulvey that discussed the "rarity" of some of the tracks.
Naturally, some of The Archives detractors in the 4% Club came out and tried to start another round of trouble.
Today, Mulvey's blogs a followup on Uncut.co.uk:
Plenty of discussion on last week’s Neil Young blog, and also, more fractiously, over at Thrasher’s Wheat, about the value/usefulness/etc of “Archives”.
A lot of the heat seems to revolve around definitions of “unreleased songs”, and whether that means unreleased recordings of known songs, or songs that have never been previously released in any form.The debate reaches a highpoint of sorts on Thrasher’s Wheat when one persistent critic suggests, “if you read the Uncut Blog, the author states that there is only one notable unreleased song worth listening to – ‘Everybody's Alone’. Neil Young has committed the greatest fraud in the history of music.”
Blimey. That made me re-read my original post, and check that I called ‘Everybody’s Alone’ “the one really essential unheard song on the whole set” – not the only one worth listening to, quite. It strikes me, thinking about this some more, that the whole debate calls into question the main point of boxsets like this. Should we really expect most unreleased material to stand comparison with the best work of, in this case, Neil Young? Or should we see them more as historical research tools, where the unreleased songs are most more interesting as contextualising evidence rather than stand-alone tracks?
So, John, back over to you and our intrepid readers and commenters. And will we see a return of the Johnny Rocket troll?
More on The Neil Young Archives Roundup - Lucy, Charlie & the Football.