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Monday, June 08, 2009

Archives Comment of the Moment: "monumental and staggering achievement"

The Neil Young Archives Comment of the Moment is by curly tops:
well after about 20 hours of viewing, listening and searching i've finally got through the entire archives box set...only to get a text from my friends dave and matt explaining there is more for me to download already and i've missed at least 3 amazing videos: ohio..birds..and buffalo s, in the studio....

This is a monumental and staggering achievement by neil and his gang..the quality and the formatting is way above anything i ever expected and thought id see or hear...there are of course a large majority of songs we have always heard ..but there are at least 40 -50 that are either only found on rare vinyl or havent been heard at all..i thought i owned all neil available as i collected the bootlegs for 30plus its very awesome to have at least 25 songs ive never heard before...

i guess the main attraction are all the hidden goodies that one must search for, mainly on the time line...the footage of the various harvest clips around the barn and with the london orchestra is incredible..the 1969?loner/cinammon girl cafe footage..the neil stealing his own bootleg film...oh the live springfeild audio is jaw dropping..the various 1970 csny video at the dance dance w crazy horse..and the brilliant version w g.nash..

finally seeing a perfect copy of journey through the past, and LOVING IT, this film is far better than i thought it would be..loads of awesome neil content..i love the early squires vocal recordings to..and the the RAPS throughtout the riverboat disc are becomes even more apparent that neil was never the shy,reserved lonesome hippy he is thought of..he was always a cocky,funny,strong willed talkative entertainer...

i'm learning even more just how quick he 1964 he is with squires..two years later he is working with jack n on those brilliant Springfield songs..then a solo tour then a solo album..then crazy horse..ektin.woodstock/csny/dejavu..the horse tour..goldrush lp..solo tour etc etc..sometimes in the same month..its like he was just moving so fast .jumping from one project to another..he accomplished so much and so much variety in a few short years...this is the beauty of neil(and bob dylan)..

now matter how much we read and listen to them i find our ideas and views of them continue to change and grow year by year...If i have a gripe to make about the archives id like some "decade album" style notes by neil himself..and there is lot of footage that id like to see..especially the mind boggling dutch tv special..the bbc show..and the entire csny fillmore video...

neil and joel should also check out the grateful dead,s complete fillmore and winterlong box sets with the view of releasing the entire canterbury house..cellar door and riverboat recordings as individual boxsets..oh where is the phenomenal busking scene??maybe that will come..these are just small things..

ultimately as someone who owns around 10000 records ranging from 1920 field recordings right thru to sun ra vinyl ..and everything by neil bob beatles etc etc all the boxsets all the brilliant bootleg stuff etc etc..this is the most exciting and brilliantly assembled archival release of all time..this BLU RAY format is sensational...

(now someone please find some danny whitten footage..that is the holy grail for me..danny's guitar on ektin is my favorite ever lp of guitar playing..and for the record the rhythm section on the electric side of 4 way street is my favorite ever rhythm playing after billy and ralph)

go forth fellow men and indulge yourself in the most incredible box set you've ever experienced.

- curly tops

Thanks curly tops!

Also, see Everything You've Ever Wanted To Know About The Neil Young Archives But Were Afraid To Ask.

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At 6/08/2009 10:12:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"where is the phenomenal Busking scene"

i believe that was recorded in 1976 in 1976, in Glasgow....wait for the next Vol of the Archives.

For all these people that want this and that....there is a limit to actually what can delivered via the BluRay, BR Live is a completely difft story.

PS - Thrasher, what's the point of making us input Word Verification? i dont get it.

At 6/08/2009 10:33:00 AM, Blogger Thrasher said...

Re: Word Verification

A couple of reasons. First and foremost it minimizes comment spam which is a real problem especially when WV is off.

I turned off when AG was hot and heavy with comments and it kept it easier to quickly respond. Now that things are settling back down, it helps to keep things clean.

Sorry for all the trouble but you know it goes. A few bad apples....

peace & love,

At 6/08/2009 10:35:00 AM, Blogger Zak Claxton said...

I enjoyed Curly Tops' message. It echoes much of what I've experienced so far with NYA V1. I mean, what an amazingly immersive experience it is, queueing up from Disc 1 and going through every little aspect.

I find that one best approaches the Archives with some kind of organized strategy. I say that, and then it generally goes right out the window when something cool catches my eye and I can't help but deviate from my carefully-planned course.

But the idea I'm following is as such: go through ALL the music on a disc. Then go through all the hidden tracks. Then go through all the videos. Then start browsing through photos and memorabilia. Then make sure there's not some cool hidden content in the "MORE" area. Then go through the whole thing again and invariably find something you missed in the first pass. Only then do you move on to the next disc, and so on.

It's pretty much impossible, since you find yourself suddenly thinking of some other song or some other point in Neil's artistry, and next thing you know, you're skipping all the way to "Topanga 3".

But in the 48 hours I've had it in my grubby little hands, I've been continually more and more impressed with the Archives. As I've told the people who've asked me, I had very high expectations and was prepared to be disappointed... and not only dod the expectations end up being met, but in several aspects were blown out of the damn water. I really never thought it would be *this* cool.

Thank you Neil. Thank you Archive People. Thank you. :)

At 6/08/2009 11:41:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it seems that Warners have messed up with the U.K. archives stock and not imported enough. As others have pointed out even Amazon seem short of stock.
We have managed to get stock here at Badlands Records Cheltenham , we can't compete on price with the big boys but we do currently have stock of the CD and DVD set in our shop and available to mail order now . We are trying to source more Blurays but are currently sold out .. but we have had it so it has reached these shores.
Check us out at or phone 01242227724 / 25
Badlands Records.

At 6/08/2009 12:18:00 PM, Blogger richard said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 6/08/2009 12:20:00 PM, Blogger richard said...

placed an order for the Blu-Ray on June 3rd with Badlands, and had it delivered on June 4th! I'd highly recommend them...

Love the set, and I just hope Springsteen and Dylan are taking notes...

At 6/08/2009 12:26:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your NYA strategy makes me laugh b/c I came up with one too but I think it has more to do with OCD than a carefully constructed plan to digest the Archives! :P For the most part I stuck to this plan of attack:
-Listen to the tracks, a song at a time while browsing all the photos, documents etc.
-Go back and listen to alternate versions and performance videos of songs.
-Read the disc bio.
-Look for any hidden clips in the "More" section.
-Play any songs/clips on the timeline for one last blast of enetertainment before moving onto the next disc...


At 6/08/2009 01:23:00 PM, Blogger Zak Claxton said...

Jason, as I'm sure you experienced, the pure amount of stuff to go through is so daunting that I was afraid I'd start inadvertently skipping and/or missing stuff if I didn't put some kind of game plan together. Whew!

By the way, this is half the fun... it's a very interactive process in this way, and it bears little resemblance to your typical album listening experience. I can't help but think that old Shakey and his team were well aware of what the experience would be like, from trying to get the damn discs out of the package to sitting there, mesmerized and a bit overwhelmed at all this content to soak in. I'm having a blast with it.

At 6/08/2009 01:35:00 PM, Blogger dolbero said...

Hey AB in manchester
No sign of the archives down here in cornwall any sign up your way?!

At 6/08/2009 02:50:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neil is busking outside Glasgow Central station in 1976.
Jim Fae-Scotland

At 6/08/2009 03:03:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey dolbero: I recieved my CD version (from this morning! Still no sign of my Blu-Ray set (From Warners) yet though. I've had a 'shipped' confirmation so i'm pinning my hopes on it turning up tomorrow.

I'm currently working my way through the CD set, a couple of the discs have a bit of glue on the edges but i've managed to clear off what I can and they all sound fine.

I hope there is no further delay with orders from Warners - i've got a week off work and want to make the most of it!

AB (Manchester UK)

At 6/09/2009 01:35:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Definitely a monumental and staggering achievement for those who have got a copy in their hot little hands. Monumental and staggering stuff up for those who ordered back in March and are still awaiting arrival. I for one will never order directly from the NY/WB website again.

At 6/09/2009 03:54:00 AM, Anonymous curly tops said...

hey..curly tops here...gee thnaks for the compliments on my comments...i now realise that the BUSKING SCENE is from 1976...that will be fun..if neils team read this stuff we nuts write,,please let it be known that all the people down here that have this archives set are blown away...i cant say how much we want to encourage joel and neil and the others to please know how much we love the work and please keep it coming..more more more..can we please get some consideration for the complete tapes of.riverboat .cantubury house.. massey hall..all live crazy horse..the danish tv special..also any other versions left of lp, the emporer of wyoming sudio talking tapes in the there any more of this kinda thing??id kiss the stereo to hear studio chatter of neil and danny and billy and ralph...and alt versions of any of those lp.s...anyway..i guess im writing in the hope of incouraging the archives team to BRING IT ON..this is awesome reveals so much..we love it..and bow to you in respect for this gift you have givin us..

At 6/09/2009 07:58:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Curly, for someone who claims they've been collecting Neil bootleg material for 30 years, it seems odd you've never seen Journey Through The Past before - it's never been hard to find a copy of. Same with the footage from 1971 with the London Symphony Orchestra recording AMNAM and There's A World. And not realising that the busking scene was from the 1976 tour. At least it gives you a few more surprises in the Archives I suppose!


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