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Saturday, March 06, 2010

Blu-Ray Tip of the Moment

Boy, this falls into the slap on the forehead, why didn't I think of it category.

So, we've had a Blu-Ray player for about 8 months now and have one single title: The Neil Young Archives. Which is OK, for sure and we count our blessings that we do. But that's all our Sony PS-3 has been used for -- just NYA.

That is until we read this comment by wmcgurn regarding a cover by St. Vincent's Annie Clark and Bon Iver's Justin Vernon Cover Neil Young's "Harvest Moon":
Here's an example where getting a blue ray player for the Archives has paid dividends. I never spent too much time watching music on YouTube because of the small screen and poor speakers on my computer. I just watched this version of Harvest Moon (Great!)streaming thru the YouTube portal on my blue ray - playing on an HD TV screen and through my surround system.
I'd like to see more BD live downloads but I can keep occupied in the meanwhile surfing internet videos. Maybe I'll check out Sir Paul with Neil doing "A Day in the Life" again....

Talk about "doh"?!

All along -- we too had been watching YouTubes on a tiny little square on PC speakers.

So we headed right over to our recent favorite YouTube clip of
Wilco covering "Broken Arrow".


The brilliant Wilco cover of the Neil Young penned Buffalo Springfield "wall of sound" epic Broken Arrow. Recorded on February 23, 2010 at Hamilton Place, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. This thing rocked on our PS-3 plugged into our system.

Now, we'll say this. Dealing with the URL is a challenge on the Blu-Ray. Here's what we did. On the YouTube channel -- which is a menu pre-select -- do a search on "Wilco Broken Arrow". There were only 3 matches that came up. The Hamilton version is the longest and best. You then have to select the choice and move the cursor over to the selction and hit play.

It's tricky the first time. But well worth it for HD YouTube videos that you'd like to enjoy. Or get some value out of your Blu-Ray player.

Cool. Thanks a bunch wmcgurn!

More on the Neil Young Archives Blu-ray Easter Eggs, Hidden Tracks & BD Live.


At 3/06/2010 02:26:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wouldn't know what to do without this blog.

At 3/06/2010 07:48:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neil's BluRay Archives are NOT user friendly. End of discussion.

it's so difficult to navigate, i simply opt to listen to the crappy MP3s.

At 3/07/2010 02:57:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Thrasher - out of curiosity, how often do you play Neil's archives on BluRay? Couple times a week? Less or more?

I'm about on track for 1.5 times per month or so, maybe closer to one.

At 3/07/2010 03:31:00 AM, Blogger wiebow said...

For pesky url typing I usually hook up an USB keyboard to the PS3. With an extension cord I still can lay on my couch :)

At 3/07/2010 09:16:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

Nice tip. Thrasher.
The PS3 is such a great box.

I've lately been enjoying streaming NetFlix movies thru my PS instead of on my laptop.
A free Blu-ray disc from the NetFlix site opens this portal.

Anon- so what is difficult about navigating thru the Archives and not user friendly?
Please explain. Not the end of discussion.

-Archives Guy

At 3/07/2010 09:55:00 AM, Blogger The Loner said...

The Archines: I experince that when connecting the BluRay player via HDMI to the receiver I have to push the mute botton twice to get the sound when in "Song selection Mode".

When sendig the picture directly to the television and the sound via analog cable to the receiver there are no such problems. Am I alone with this experience that might have to do with my specific receiver and cables, or have others the same experience? Otherwise I find The Archives userfriendly.

-The Loner

At 3/07/2010 10:38:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

AG - this is Anonymous, the person who said the Archives are not user friendly.

I'm happy to type up a full summation, but only if you promise to respond in kind. I want to ensure that you're hearing my points in hopes that future editions of the Archives improve.

please let me know.

At 3/07/2010 10:42:00 AM, Blogger thrasher said...

Hi Anon 3/07/2010 11:38:00 AM,

Please feel free to post here.

I can't speak for AG, but I think if you present your issues in a sincere fashion then he'll probably reply here.

Also, if you could be so kind as to use an identifer/handle/name that would be nice.


At 3/07/2010 11:53:00 AM, Blogger john said...

Sorry to learn that Anon had navigation problems.I am a technical ignoramus,but I have had no problem.I have the old fat PS3 bought on AG's recommendation - thanks AG.

Several weeks ago my 18 year old neice went online with the PS3 & was looking at Neil's YouTubes.His music APPEALS TO ALL AGES!

At 3/07/2010 02:26:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is Anonymous here (I will call my self "Usability" in this thread).

AG, thanks for responding. Let me state, emphatically, that the Archives is a phenomenal artistic statement. It is the most complete view into an artist that i can think of, an artistic treasure trove.

That said, it still has some major problems. I'm not here to judge the content (why was more actual unreleased material not offered?) or how we've basically been forced to buy material a few times over - that discussion has been debated ad nauseam. No need to go there.

My major complaint about BluRay Vol 1 is this: it's too challenging to listen to and find all the material buried within.

The easter eggs and hidden tracks are nice, and have their place....but why not simply offer the option to PLAY ALL material on a given disc so you don't always have to bounce around and search for stuff? It's not fun, maybe the first time it's cool to find stuff, but it's get tiring and painful.

Plus, let's say you want to pull up one of your favorite buried treasures....well, you have to actually remember what disc it's on, then ultimately navigate to it....and then play it. That can take a few minutes or more.....and in this day and age not everyone has the time to kick back and explore.

That's reality.

Simply give people the option to PLAY ALL and this debate completely goes away. I would absolutely love the option to PLAY ALL....just put in a disc, click PLAY ALL, and ALL the content on a given disc plays. No need to navigate, no need to disrupt the flow, just enjoy the multimedia experience! That would be very, very cool.

I am someone who eagerly awaited the Archives since the late 80s, but am disappointed with how challenging it is to find stuff.

I don't play BluRay version nearly enough.....maybe 15 times or so since buying it on the first day of release in June. That is pretty sad.

Yea, i do listen to the MP3s all the time, but i'm missing out on a lot more enjoyment given all the rarities on the BluRay.

I have 2 other friends who bought the BluRay and they are turned off by the navigational hazards.

I'm curious to hear what you think, AG.

thank you for reading


At 3/07/2010 03:04:00 PM, Anonymous punkdavid said...


I solved the navigation problem by ripping all the audio to my computer. I imagine that isn't so easy if you're playing with a PS3 or other standard BD player,but I've got a BD drive in my PC, and that's how I use the Archives.

So now it's just as simple as creating a playlist in Winamp or whatever other player you might use, and I can listen to all the hidden tracks mixed in with the regular tracks (in correct chronological order, of course), as well as the audio from the videos if I wish, and the BD-Live.

I understand that doing that is perhaps beyond a lot of people's technical abilities, but it is a way to do it.

Also, I fell asleep last night listening to Disc 8 North Country, even having done all that, I still pop in the discs several times a month anyway.

At 3/07/2010 03:09:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

interesting Punk David.

were you also able to rip the video as well? I'd like to simply put in a disc and play everything - music and video - it'd also be great if photos randomly popped up in a slide show format (but beggars cant be choosy).


At 3/07/2010 07:34:00 PM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

In reply to Usablity-

There is a PLAY ALL button on the Main Menu.
The user selects that and hears all the songs in a row.

The File Cabinet path is a different animal. It is for when the user wants to explore the archives while listening. It could never have a function that lets the user passively look at all the archives materials while listening. The whole point is interactivity and exploration.

However, if all you want to do is listen to all the songs, select PLAY ALL

Also as an owner of the BD set you can use your free download card and listen to the music program mobile or on a computer.

What kind of "navigation hazards are you referring to?

thanks for the input.
-Archives Guy

At 3/07/2010 07:47:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


i think you're missing my point. I am well aware that there is a PLAY ALL feature.....but that does not play EVERYTHING of an audio/video nature on the disc.

There are plenty of buried/hidden items that don't get played when you press PLAY ALL. I'm requesting that EVERYTHING get played.

I think you overstate the importance of interactivity and exploration. Yea, maybe the first couple of times it's cool - but no one wants to continously have to plow through this thing to find something that is not necessarily easy to find. That, frankly, is not a fun endeavor.

Are you saying that there are limitations in the current format, and everything - MUSIC, VIDEO, hidden or otherwise - can't be engineered in such a way to make this possible some day?

I'll give you an example of a frustration i've found. I had a friend over this weekend and i wanted to show him the clip of Neil Young going into a record store and walking out with one of his bootlegs.

It took me 20 mins before i found it.....sorry, AG, but this kind of "exploration" is not fun, it's annoying and i betcha if people answered honestly they'd say the same thing.

My friend's response: "How much did Neil charge you for THIS?"




At 3/07/2010 08:28:00 PM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

To Usability: you want all the film/ video content and the music program as a PLAY ALL?

The issue isn't limitions. We just have no interest in doing that. What you ask isn't what the Neil Young Archives/ Shakey Platform is all about.

As far as navigation frustration goes with finding Hidden Tracks and Easter Eggs- there are about 3 simple rules/icon hints to remember and then one has the discs mastered.
I think that some other users might chime into say that once they found one or two things, all the other hidden nuggets were easy to find. There is no trickery or complicated things to learn.
We programed the discs this way on purpose. A couple of simple things to learn and then you are on your way.

-Archives Guy

At 3/07/2010 08:28:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

Thanks AG.

Usability - hope that helped. Your move.

At 3/07/2010 09:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

AG -

i appreciate the full responses and the add'l information.

Thank you also for making it clear that there are no current technology limitations that limit the ability to PLAY ALL (ie, hidden tracks etc).

This option simply does not exist because Neil chooses not to deploy the functionality. Understood.

IMHO, Neil should make some concessions here. It really isn't as fun or intriguing as you might think it is to continually have to jump around, navigating to a hidden track.

Trust me, i've heard numerous complaints about this. Even Thrasher, if he answered honestly, would likely say the same.

At some point, the people will speak up.....with their wallets, and i guarantee you if the next Volume has the same limited functionality less people will buy it. Just like Neil, Technology Never Sleeps.

Neil, whether he likes it or not, is dealing with a new kind of consumer.

You make it seem like it's a walk in the park to find all this stuff. Are you forgetting that you have to navigate into every single individual file folder in the cabinet, and then constantly poke around the various tabs....and then find the hidden file??

Trust me, it aint fun - it's a waste of time to constantly have to do this.

But, i digress....

thank you sincerely for your responses, they are appreciated.


At 3/08/2010 10:42:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

I think that the disconnect we have with this is what each of use believes to be the Main Program/ Play All.

A good analogy here might be comparing the Archives to a Hollywood title. On the latter the user selects PLAY and then watches the program. There is a special Features area on the disc where there are Deleted Scenes (kinda like a Hidden Track or Alt mix) and bonus videos (such as the making of, behind the scenes).

So on an Archives disc you can PLAY ALL and watch the main program...just like a Hollywood movie.
But if you have a greater interest, the user can then check out Hidden Tracks and Bonus film/video clips. Hidden Tracks and Easter Eggs are just what one would think...extras...bonus....not part of the Main Program.

What you are asking for here is the equivalent of having a Hollywood title that would play your movie and then play all the bonus features while you sit passively. That just isn't done.

As explained before, under Neil's personal direction the Archives platform was developed as an interactive project, BUT allows the more passive user to play the Main Program automatically.

We've even programed the discs so that you don't ever have to go as far as turning on your TV.
Once the discs start up the PLAY ALL button is active. A simple push of the Play/Enter button on your remote plays the Main Program....not even a distracting visual is needed.

In reply to your poke at Volume 2- Volume 2 will have greater interactively and more advanced features than Volume 1. To say that Volume 1 had "limited functionality", I take offense, having worked on this from the ground floor to the street. These discs contain a great deal of technology that has never before been attempted or successful. The Shakey Platform is a revolutionary way to enjoy an artist's work. You'll be seeing other releases coming by other artists using this platform.

I don't expect us to see eye to eye on this, but maybe now you have some insight to the thought and intent behind the Archives platform.

-Archives Guy

At 3/08/2010 12:31:00 PM, Anonymous sugarmtn said...

I think the breadth of the material forces the Shakey Platform solution. I'd prefer a chronological master index somewhere, but am sure Neil & the Shakey crew would hate that.

For me the Rosetta Stone is this -

But truthfully, after a few spins of the Blu-Rays, now I mostly listen to the artfully mastered CDs and thumb through the wonderful book. Except at BDLive time and then I re-learn to drive the Blu-Ray discs again.


At 3/08/2010 01:07:00 PM, Blogger andrea1bianco said...

I use my Archives as a sort of Encyclopedia on Neil. Sometimes I check this Encyclopedia. I was wrong to buy a BD player. It's very long connecting the long wires to my telephone plug.For the downloads and BD live , this is very annoying.In the future, I'll buy the PS3 instead.

Andrea."So Tired"

At 3/08/2010 02:00:00 PM, Blogger karen said...

I listen to the archives on my iPod. ; ) Okay, don't kill me Archives Guy, it was just a joke. (Although I do, listen to them, there, additionally.)

I love the BluRay. And I was among those with the most trepidation about ever being able to figure it out. But it was super easy, and fun as all ****. I think it's a blast to flip through the file cabinet and pull stuff up. I think it's important to engage your imagination, and put yourself in a place where you are imagining what it was like for Neil et. al. during these years. The Blu Ray interactive takes you so close to being there! To me, that makes that Grammy winning box a bona fide treasure box.


At 3/08/2010 05:33:00 PM, Anonymous punkdavid said...

A couple of points I've seen that I'd like to address...


Yes, I'm pretty sure it is quite easy to rip the video as well as the audio (I was interested only in the audio, but the programs I used to do this were designed for ripping video). As for the pictures, that's a different matter since on BD, the still "pictures" are actually video loops.

There are numerous guides on line for how to rip Blu-ray discs. I've been thinking of making my own step-by-step geared specifically towards the Archives (and towards Rusties, who are not exactly the most technical folks on teh interwebz). If you want a couple of pointers, look for me on the RustList and shoot me an email offlist. You shouldn't have to go back more than a day or two to find a post by me most of the time.

@Archives Guy:

I like your metaphor of a Hollywood movie DVD with bonus features, but since the Archives isn't a movie, it should probably be approached a little differently.

For example, I have the Lord of the Rings Special Edition DVDs. Each film comes with 2 discs that are the "main program", and 2 more discs of special features. Each special features disc has a "play all" function as well, so you can just sit back and watch a 2 hour documentary about the making of the films if you wish.

There are some features that are not part of the "play all" (such as the pictures or other things might not work on the Archives), but I see no reason why there couldn't be a second "play all" button to play all the hidden tracks, videos, audio clips, and even the contemporary BD-Live components. You could have a "main program", "play all bonus features", and "play ALL" choices.

At 3/08/2010 05:55:00 PM, Anonymous Supplanted ROTM said...

For several reasons, I've delayed purchasing the Archives Vol 1 till now. So I go to to purchase and it seems that there is no purchase option for the Blu-ray. What gives?

I wanted to purchase it directly as i want to be sure to have the latest, most improved product. But I have found other sites where I can pick the package up for considerably less mullah. Am I taking any type of a risk on the product if I do that?

And if I wait to buy from, is it still shipping with the Squires record?

At 3/08/2010 06:29:00 PM, Anonymous punkdavid said...

The only positive (as far as I could tell) of ordering a full set from was the inclusion of the bonus 45, but I thought that was only for pre-orders only. Amazon and other internet retailers have consistently had better pricing.

At 3/08/2010 07:06:00 PM, Blogger Sigma6 said...

I would love to have a Play All which would play the main program audio, the hidden audio tracks and the BD-live audio tracks (similar to the main program Play All). I feel your pain Usability.

At 3/08/2010 07:46:00 PM, Anonymous LRR said...

I would love a "play all" button on the front Mynah Birds page.

I would love a "Play All" button that played an entire live set of CSNY including a long and slow Southern Man.

BUT I LOVE the "Play All" option we already have. It took me a while to come around, but I think the sets are perfect as-is and they tell the story well. More songs would, IMHO, just make the set ponderous.

MY biggest issue with finding hidden material is not that I have to push a few extra buttons. It's that the load times are so damn long. But that should improve over time....

At 3/08/2010 08:15:00 PM, Blogger Sigma6 said...

LRR, the majority of the time I listen to the Archives by using the Play All button (just like listening to a LP or a CD, that's how I and most people I would think listen to music). I'm not talking about content physically not there, but content that is just sitting there on the disk or HD but you need to navigate to actually listen to it. I don't mind navigating to the other content i.e lyrics, photos etc. (this is the really powerful part of the Archives, which I love as well) it's just the currently available audio I am talking about. That would be nice.

Maybe something like a playlist? Playlists could then be used to play an album how it appears on the original release. But of course we would need all the tracks for that first :-) But I digress.

At 3/08/2010 09:32:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I respectfully disagree with people who say the Archives are not user friendly. I have a Samsung 3600. I hooked up the wireless internet no problem (well, my wife did!) and the load times are not bad at all. I love the platform and presentation. I also have found that it has been awhile since I had focused listening sessions like I used to with LPs 25-30 years ago as I click around photos and stuff.

I printed out the list of easter eggs and hidden tracks that someone was nice enough to compile and keep it in the stash box. I watch this enough that I know where most of them are now anyway!

I think it is a great format and a great artistic statement, so congrats Archives Guy, L.A. (RIP, Neil and everyone on it.

My main complaint is there is not enough content. I was charged for 10 Blue-rays, and there is hardly ENOUGH content to justify 10 discs.

Archives Guy, maybe you can confirm but my guess is that Neil had decided the material before Blue Ray came into play. I believe reports a few years ago called for 8 CDs and two DVDs, that looks to be what we got.

Now if it is a question of song rights/royalties etc., there could have been more footage of Joel and Neil in the barn, the Elliott Mazer interview and so on.

I expect there to be more video on Vol. 2. I will give Neil a pass since there is little to no video of the Springfield/Squires/Danny-era Crazy Horse.

But from what there is, there could have been more, or it could have fit on 8 or 9 discs.

At 3/08/2010 09:36:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

sorry, meant to sign the above post as Joe Yankee, unless there already is someone by that name here!

I also love the blu-ray player for the streaming Nteflix. I bought the archives on release week but waited to get a player until my original dvd player died. It did, thje week after Christmas so it was a nice gift to myself. PC Richard had a nice sale.

Anyway, I just wish there was more stuff from Neil - even if the BD live is commentary a la decade on the stuff already included! Like the Stray Gators outtakes, etc.

At 3/08/2010 10:08:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But I can see everyone's point! I would probably have listened to the basement version of I Wonder a lot more if it was on a CD than on a BD-live.

Too bad there wasn't music playing on the timeline! I really like that screen, be nice if there was menu music playing!

Joe Yankee

At 3/09/2010 06:49:00 AM, Blogger Harm said...

Coming back to the topic of the original post: my in-laws visited us a few weeks back and I demonstrated the videogame Buzz to them. Afterwards my father in law, a music lover asked whether my PS3 could also go on the internet as I also played on-line. So I gave it a try and let him check his e-mail, download attachments (he plays in a band and had recordings of it) which could be played back immediately. Then he asks, so can you also go on YouTube? It was like I heard a virtual 'bong' and we spent most of the rest of the night looking at YouTube. Will do that more often, especially when the new South Park episodes go on-line!

At 3/09/2010 09:37:00 AM, Blogger andrea1bianco said...

I've written it many times before in my posts.The tracklist is very old, at least before the 2000, anyway before the BS Box Set.The original tracklist was chosen by Neil himself, so you can think now that there're some errors here. Some songs, actually released, are listed as unreleased.
Andrea."So Tired"
Anonymous said:
..."Archives Guy, maybe you can confirm but my guess is that Neil had decided the material before Blue Ray came into play. I believe reports a few years ago called for 8 CDs and two DVDs, that looks to be what we got. "...

At 3/09/2010 10:11:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

The track list for NYA Vol 1 was locked for quite sometime before we created the final product in all it's versions.
Then it became a matter of developing technology that would fulfill Neil's vision of how to present and organize the content.
-Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 10:15:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

in reply to sugarmt-
The tracks on NYA Vol1 are represented chronologically in the File Cabinet drawer.

ok...ya so the hidden tracks aren't there. that's 'cause they are bonuses...hidden.

I'm starting to think about not having anymore hidden tracks or bonuses on Vol2 since there is so much belly aching. Maybe we should just leave 'em out. :-)

-Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 10:19:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

in reply to "Joe Yankee"-

Senator, I served with Joe Yankee, I knew Joe Yankee, Joe Yankee was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Joe Yankee.

-Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 10:22:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

in reply to Anon on Vol2-

Yes, there will be a lot more video/film in NYA Vol2.
As we move into the mid 70's and beyond, a lot more shows get recorded to video and film.

I'll leave it up to you astute students to puzzle out just what they may be.

-Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 10:41:00 AM, Blogger thrasher said...

Hi AG,

Again, thanks for dropping by and sharing.

Regarding hidden tracks, easter eggs, etc.

Please don't change direction on this. It is this interactivity which brings me back.

I hear the desire for PLAY ALL and no need to hunt. And I understand that in today's maddeningly frantic life, the luxury of surfing around seems well ... a luxury.

Maybe if NYA had been released in the 60's, 70's 80 or even 90's folks might have more patience. I do think that much of this "laziness" & impatience is due to our frenetic short attention span syndrome.

Which i don't quite get frankly. I would venture to guess that the vast majority of NYA purchasers spend oodles of mindless hours surfing around the internet. And never even finding a gold nugget.

Stay the course.

Just throwing this out but maybe NYA 2 Bluray could be the full vision. The DVD & CDs could be for the more casual, time presssured restless consumer.

Stay shakey, dude.

At 3/09/2010 10:56:00 AM, Blogger Archives Guy said...


I think that DVDs and CDS will be a thing of the past in a few years. There won't be a DVD version of NYA Vol2.

Can you believe that we've put up with the crappy CD format of 16bit 44 kHz since the late 80's as the flagship standard for sound?

Even more unbelievable is that now folks have replaced it with MP3 files that toss away 90% of the information that was on a CD.

All this time picture quality keeps increasing. Now we are up to HD picture.

Whatever happened to audio quality along the way?
Is this progress?

-Archives Guy (urging you to listen to some vinyl or at least a cassette tape this week)

At 3/09/2010 11:14:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher / AG -

sorry, not everyone shares your enthusiasm for exploring around. Once you've done it once or twice....the luster wears away.

Having both options - exploration and Play All - would be ideal.

I work from home a lot, i sit at my desk, and I'd love to play BluRay Archives non-stop while i work. I'd love it if the hidden tracks to play as well, but to do that, i have to stop my work, fiddle around, then find the track i want to play. And once that hidden track has played, a few mins later....what do i have to do? Repeat the same steps and play another hidden track. Then repeat again, and again, and again.

Oh yea, all the while i'm supposed to be working.

Yea, Thrash, we do live in a busy world, sorry you don't get that.

Warm regards,


At 3/09/2010 11:29:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous Wall of Digital Sound said...

Can't comment too much on the hidden tracks issue, because I do not yet own the Archive Vol 1 BD set. Went to purchase from but apparently Neil's run out of product. Any chance of getting this restocked? Does it still come with the 45rpm? Or was that a pre-order thin? If not I'll just purchase someplace else, I guess.

What i will say though is that when i do purchase this set, it will be for Neil's vision of what the experience should or shouldn't be, not random bloggers' vision. So go with the hidden tracks if that's the vision. But then again, if Neil rethinks and changes his tune, well we get "Don't Cry No Tears" instead of "I Wonder." It's all good, IMHO.

And AG, there will always be some who bemoan anything and everything Neil does. Even super-fans such as my good friend Mike who, I think, still resents Decade because there was music on their he had already purchased once or twice.

So, take my advice, don't listen to me, or them. Do what Neil wants. We'll all deal.

Ain't singing for Anonymous
Ai't singin' for The Loner
Ain't singin' for Usability
Makes me look like a joke...

At 3/09/2010 12:47:00 PM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

Anon Wall of Digital S*#@!-

We are currently in process of coming out with a new run of NYA Vol1 BD and it will be back in stock. (no, I don't know the date).

The Squires 45 was a limited edition and only part of those early orders.

If you are a collector and itchin' to get your Archives on, you might check eBay or Amazon to see what is out there.

-Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 12:49:00 PM, Blogger Archives Guy said...


Me thinks that maybe you should hang out with your Archives after work, when you are relaxing and not multi-tasking so much.

Don't really know what relaxing is, but I hear that it is a pretty cool way to spend one's time.

-your friendly neighborhood Archives Guy

At 3/09/2010 01:05:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Archives Guy -

You've completely (ignorantly?) missed my point.

have a nice day and thank you for responding.

Kind regards,


At 3/09/2010 01:27:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...


That wasn't necessary. Sorry you're not happy, but don't be rude/snide/snarky.

Think about it. The guy's trying to be helpful. This isn't exactly his job to respond to this sort of thing.

Frankly, I'd feel better if he were spending more time on NYA2 than on TW.


At 3/09/2010 01:35:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Trasher -

both you and AG have also been "snarky" in this dialogue.

Take your own advice for a change.



At 3/09/2010 01:43:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Back to your censoring ways, Thrash?

well played


At 3/09/2010 01:46:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

We try and be nice and helpful here.

And then we get accused of this censorship crap.

And you wonder why it's so hard to try and be polite to you.

Pray tell what are you talking about?

Your comments haven't been deleted.

And will we see an apology for false accusations??

At 3/09/2010 02:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


are you saying you've never censored in this forum before?

(This should be an interesting response).


At 3/09/2010 02:41:00 PM, Blogger Archives Guy said...

I think that my tone has been misinterpreted.

Seems like a theme lately. Dang! What's up with that?

At 3/09/2010 04:22:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

At 3/09/2010 03:40:00 PM,

c'mon. No, we've never censored.

We've been through the "censorship" thing before, right? By definition, it's not possible for a personal blog to "censor".

Specifically, no posts have been deleted in this thread.

Deleting posts per policy is NOT censorship.

So can we get back on topic?


At 3/09/2010 05:14:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrash -

you doth protest too much!

At 3/09/2010 06:37:00 PM, Anonymous punkdavid said...

Trying to be a voice of moderation...

I think we all need to not take these discussions so personally. It must be that time of year, because some other blogs I'm on are blowing up right now too.

Usability, you need to understand that AG is not obligated to give us this info, and takes his time to do so. We won't always like his answers, and frankly, he's a sport for coming into the lion's den with us Neil know-it-alls who can nitpick everything he does and says. He's not a dick, and rarely loses his composure, at all, despite the abuse he sometimes takes.

Similarly, Thrasher gives us this forum to communicate, and can run it the way he sees fit. He censors very little. In fact, as a former forum moderator myself, I've advised him to censor more at times in order to keep things civil and eliminate trolls. He does his best to facilitate open discussion, and it is a service.

As for Archives Guy, I understand that your job is to implement Neil's vision for the sets, and that part of that vision is Neil's conviction that The Archives should be explored and savored as an interactive, not passive, medium.

But it's important to understand, and respect, that most working people, people who work hard to be able to afford the very high price of the Archives sets and other Neil releases, have less time than they would like to fully devote their attention to The Archives as they were intended. Personally, I've had my most rewarding experiences with The Archives, not in my sitting at the computer exploring the details, but lying back in bed and letting the HD Audio wash over me and hearing nuances in familiar songs that I'd never known before.

Clearly, you're under no obligation to take our suggestions to the Boss, or even to take them under advisement (and yes, I recognize that that you have done just that on occasion in the past), but it does seem like you didn't even hear usability's criticisms, as you responses sometimes seemed to ignore his points. Frankly, saying, "That's not a bad idea, but I can tell you, it ain't gonna happen," would be an acceptable answer for most people, I'd think.

Peace and love,


At 3/09/2010 07:17:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep the hidden tracks! There just needs to be more of them!

I love the format! You get involved and pay attention! I stop multi-tasking and focus on Neil and navigate away!

I hope there will be more updates because the formative years hold my most interest! Cellar Door! Canterbury 1969 tracks! any more studio outtakes?

Joe Mets

At 3/09/2010 09:19:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Archives Guy -

it's because of your smug, elitist attitude that i will abstain from purchasing anything Archives related moving forward (you, too, Thrasher).

The way the world works today, i can basically find anything i want for free anyways (Dreamin' Man, a perfect example). AG, I've contributed enough to your salary over the years, anyhow. Enough of that.

I simply came here to discuss what, IMHO, would improve the Archives; you fired back with insults and a cold shoulder (again, you, too, Thrasher).

May want to think twice before insulting a 'restless' consumer. I have a wallet, never forget that.

Good tidings,


At 3/09/2010 10:07:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

we live in a diff't world, AG/Thrasher, a diff't time and place.

The world today is about immediacy. The internet has changed everything.

You may not like it, i may not like it....but it's reality. Deal with it.

As David Briggs once quipped: Life's a Shit Sandwich; eat it or die.


At 3/09/2010 10:48:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...


Your tone and attitude are duly noted.


Sorry things didn't work out.

eat a peach,

At 3/10/2010 08:37:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher -

thank you.


At 3/10/2010 11:03:00 AM, Anonymous zejt said...

I love my box the way it is. If you don't like it don't buy it.Go bitch elsewhere.

Walk On...Zejt

At 3/10/2010 11:17:00 AM, Anonymous punkdavid said...


So, because YOU love it, others should bitch ELSEWHERE?

Got it.

At 3/10/2010 12:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was a time that Neil was not planning to release the Archives in MP3 format (or was it CDs?), but public demand requested it, and neil acquiesced. So, it's worthwhile to offer ways to improve the Archives in this forum. If you can't respect someone's opinion that's a shame.

Neil is an extremely credible artist, where the art normally always comes first. But Neil is also a businessman and even he can't afford to continuously flip his middle finger up at his fanbase.

The 70s are long gone, when Neil had multi-million-selling records and he was rolling in cash.

Neil has a business to run, and he requires revenue streams.

The Archives is one of those streams, and Neil needs to find a way to make them profitable, to fund his many projects, including his lifestyle as well as to pay the people that work for him (hello, Archives Guy).

That's my 2 cents...


PS - Hey Thrash, eat a Plumb

At 3/10/2010 01:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

well said Punk David

At 3/10/2010 09:50:00 PM, Anonymous LRR said...

I wasn't trying to pick on you sigma6. Though I understand how it could be read that way coming right after your post. My wife tells me I have a "tone problem" too. It must be my Northeastern upbringing. From your handle name you are clearly "quality". :-)

I understand your point. I'd like more playlists too....I just want a different kind of playlist. Rather than everything on the disk being dumped out with the push of a button, I'd like smaller and more specific playlists of related things so you can get a more coherent experience. Preferably of new downloadable content.

Maybe a set of some session outtakes or maybe the Cellar Door stuff...

At 3/11/2010 03:44:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Hate to tell you, that is not true: Maybe Neil was just excited when blue-ray came out, because a friend of my wife's worked at Rhino and worked on the Archives, and he says there was ALWAYS a cd version being worked on. I emailed him in a panic the day of that blue-ray press conference when Neil said there would be no CDs, and he replied, I am looking at it right now, the CD version, on my co-worker's desk.

Sorry you don't like the Archives, I think it's fun and great! Just a little short on content for Vol. 1!

Joe Mets

At 3/11/2010 10:38:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few points(spoilers ahead):

The hidden tracks:

The majority of the hidden tracks are regular album versions of alternate tracks that are on the archives. There is a few exceptions, but mostly they offer nothing new, AND they aren´t hard to find. It is ALWAYS the feather on the left or right side that you need to click, and the back of the covers even tells what they are.
The browsing isn´t very hard either, just keep pushing the forward button and you find that stuff. It really takes five minutes at most.

The easter eggs:

Are with a very few exceptions videos of the archives meetings in 1997. A play all of them would be more than pointless.

All those other videos:

Yes it would be nice if you could watch for instance all those CSNY Fillmore 1970 on Topanga 2 in a row instead of browsing through the song folders, I got to admit that.

But all in all the essential stuff is the main content that can be listened from start to finish without stopping. Everything else is just a bonus for the sake of complecity.

When I first got the archives I consumed each of them in one evening. None of the browsing through the discs took much more than 2 hours of my spare time (except The North country Disc because it has SOOOO much video on it).

And again, the hidden content is at least in Vol. 1 a 90% of nothing you need the archives for. The easter eggs are nothing you can have in the background because they´re all videos and the hidden tracks are mostly stuff we all had before, just a bonus.

It really doesn´t take much time, I personally wish there was even more, and that´s why I´m looking forward to Vol. 2 so much!

~ M.

At 3/11/2010 12:05:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher's Wheat is a great place - you make suggestions on how to possibly improve the Archives and you get thrown under a moving bus.

Real sweet, fellas.


At 3/11/2010 08:24:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hate to break it to ya, but I'm sure Neil has enough money to last the rest oif his life even if you or no one buys the Archives.

At 3/11/2010 08:30:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It took me 20 mins before i found it.....sorry, AG, but this kind of "exploration" is not fun,"

Please tell me you're exaggerating! 20 minutes? sorry to hear that.

Before you sign off in a huff, go here and print this out. keep it in the stash box for reference. After a few spins through you will get to know where everything is!

At 3/11/2010 09:42:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sure Neil has enough money to never have to work again....

but does he have enough money to support his many endeavors, and to pay the many people that work for him?


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