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Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Neil Young's Archives Volume #2: A High-Res Website

Neil Young - 2016
(Click photo to enlarge)

It's been a very, very long time since we posted an update on Neil Young's Archives -- over 2 years ago, in fact.

Back in March 2014, in response, to questions about whether NYA#2 might be a PONO release, Archives Guy said in a comment here on TW:
Not to distract from the subject of this post, but in answering the NYA V2 questions...

At this time we are still planning on physical release for NYA V2 and yes it will be available on Pono, too in full 24/192 sound quality. I'm happy to report that we are in full on production of NYA V2 right now. Maybe I'm biased, but I think V2 might be the best one. A plethora of previously unreleased tracks.

Dunno if anyone noticed it yet, but there are some new Artist Signature Series Pono players up on the Kickstarter page today.
The previous update on the Archives was 4 years earlier in 2010 as part of the NYA Special Release Series.

Now comes the latest on the oh-so elusive Neil Young's Archives Volume #2 from Rolling Stone by Patrick Doyle:
After he wraps his current tour in October, Young will continue work on Archives II, the follow-up to 2009's Archives, which collected unreleased material up to 1972. Young says the project will include Dume, an album of songs from the Zuma era, and Hitchhiker, an acoustic LP from the mid-Seventies. The major holdup has been developing technology for presenting the ambitious project: "We're gonna have a website that's, like, 60 years of music in chronological order, with links so you can look at my archives and play the music off the high-res source at the same time." So what's it like to reflect on all he's accomplished over the years? "I don't," he says. "I need to take a break and go to the bathroom."
From a Neil Young interview in UNCUT:
“I’m putting a website out, probably just before Christmas,” he told us. “It’ll be my entire archives on a website. You can listen to music, and you’ll see where albums are that are penciled in, not finished. From throughout a 40 or 50-year span, you’ll see unfinished records behind you, in front of you, right now, way in the future.”
And there you have it.

So Dume?! Not too much known about that album. The song "Hitchhiker" was eventually released on Le Noise back in 2010.

Then there's always the legendary Homegrown unreleased Neil Young Album.

Homegrown - Unreleased Neil Young Album

Or the unreleased Neil Young album Chrome Dreams.

Chrome Dreams - Unreleased Neil Young Album

More on Neil Young's Unreleased "Give to The Wind".


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


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At 7/06/2016 09:15:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 7/06/2016 09:18:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think about 10000 fans of Neil Young have died since Archives came out in 2009. As AJ of the old Broken Arrow magazine use to say about NY "Don't hold your breath when it comes to Neil" are you'll end up like those 10000 who did.

At 7/06/2016 10:05:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

Tim - We don't hold our breath when it comes to Neil either.

We're happy to have lived this far and managed to enjoy NYA#1 and everything that has come since.

We've been over this 100 times before. Would you rather Neil work on his legacy? Or create brilliant new music with his band POTR?

Ask us in 20 years and the answer will be the same.

It's good to be ALIVE & REAL.

At 7/07/2016 01:14:00 AM, Blogger Andy Walters said...

Promise of the real Neil Young lies in Vol 2 1973 - 1979

At 7/07/2016 01:50:00 AM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Thrasher--Of course, it's not an "either/or" situation between new stuff and continuing work on the Archives. I'm firmly in the camp who'd love to see/hear the new music keep on coming. At the same time, Neil has clearly not the Archives project. Lest anyone forget, the last Performance Series release was Bluenote Cafe, last fall. And we've had the re-releases of the films Rust Never Sleeps and Human Highway since then. Seems like a reasonable rate of progress to me. How quick to people expect the turnaround on this to be?

My hunch is that the trickiest thing about the Archives project is figuring out the technology and presentation to match Neil's vision. Combine that with constant flow of new projects going on, and it's really not too surprising that it's taken this long to get where we are. "Ain't it hard when you wake up in the morning and you find out those other days are gone?"Or more optimistically, "This old world keeps spinnin' 'round. It's a wonder tall trees ain't layin' down...

There comes a time".

At 7/07/2016 04:10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher I'd rather have great new music from NY any day. But these periodical alerts that the archives will be released is irritating at best and have been going on now for twenty years. Dylan has no problem releasing his archival material. But it pains me how NY does it. Always with false starts and using the excuse 'we're waiting for new technology blah blah. Release the damn s*#% and move on.

At 7/07/2016 04:51:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Love that original Chrome Dreams album, Thrasher.....remember that acoustic "Powderfinger". In the key of E instead of G, as Crazy Horse did it. The first time I heard "Will To Love", "Hold Back The Tears", and "Stringman" was on that scratchy bootleg tape I had.....ahh the memories!

At 7/07/2016 05:13:00 AM, Blogger SHIELDagent said...

Archives Guy - please tell us that a physical release is still planned.

Timothy has a point. Just release the music. The website can come later or in tandem.

Had archives Vol.1 down from the shelf last night. It would be such a shame not to get a second beautiful big box again. The box itself was a work of art let alone the music within. And that lovely leathery book. Fabulous.

A website with high-res audio is all well and good but if you have only have a laptop with a crappy soundcard, it doesn't matter how good the source is. It's like PONO. It's pointless without high-spec speakers/headphones.

Another artist to look for as an example is Jack White and his Third Man record vault. Beautifully packaged physical artifacts at a slightly higher price than usual but he knows he has a cohort of dedicated fans who will buy these things. Dylan the same with the limited mega box runs of each Bootleg series. Pealr Jam do the same with their vault series.

I think Special Deluxe gives us a a clue as to why Neil wants the website. Money is tighter than it used to be. A website would be way cheaper than a box set to produce.

Special Deluxe probably also highlights why this website approach is so disappointing. As an avid (obsessive) collector of cars, equipment, tapes etc., Neil loves real, physical things. We won't get the feeling from the music if it's tied down to an internet connection. Hell, the man collected all his tapes and recordings for over 50 years! Let us do the same if we want to. Please!

At 7/07/2016 06:46:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point Peter . I have all of his music in different formats but the hard copy whether CD or Vinyl is the most important thing. NY as of late is so PONO fixated that ultimately his music( very few people will listen to his art) and we fans suffer for it( I definitely won't ever get PONO and in reality can't even afford it).

At 7/07/2016 07:36:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dume is commented on in Waging Heavy Peace - should be a good one. Likewise for the Hitckhiker/Indigo sessions with David Briggs, which are talked about in Shakey. Neil murdered Hitckhiker in 2010 by tacking on that bland newly-written last verse (very similar to what happened to Box Car in 2007). But judging by the excellent acoustic 1992 version, the original 70's version should be a real gem.

As for the Archives as a whole, Neil's been enthusiastically talking about it before I was even born. We know in our hearts that this website idea will either not come to fruition, or will be abandoned after 18 months or so (after everyone has invested in it). On to the next thing. The more complicated the idea, the less likely it is to stand the test of time.

I agree with a lot of you on this. A basic, good-quality physical release of the next volume of the archives (with a nice package and book) would be perfect. Similar to Volume One. Classy, but nothing too complicated or "gimmicky". Let the beautiful music shine without superfluous distractions. Add just enough "extra stuff" to give the music some context and stature. Most importantly, bring it to an appreciative audience.

I thought the blu-ray version of Volume One was an impressive (if flawed) blueprint for the future. That was a good project; depth-charged by Neil's unwillingness to come through on his promises. And then he wonders why his sales have plummeted, why nobody is buying Pono. Too many broken promises in the past, Neil. People got wise, became less hasty to get out their wallets.

And of course, the longer it goes on without being released, the more likely it will get messed up. Neil's judgement will deteriorate, master tapes will decline, band members will die, treasured memories will be forgotten, photographs will decay. The incentive will be lost.

So the best time for this set to be released was 20-ish years ago, when everyone was still around to hear it. The second best time is now.

To be honest, the Archives release I was most looking forward to (Bluenote Cafe) has already been released. I was really happy with that. So I can't complain really. I'm sure it will all be released eventually. Whether there will be anyone left to hear it is quite a different matter.


At 7/07/2016 07:44:00 AM, Blogger Dan1 said...

Neil please release 'Trunk Show' !!! its now about 10 years old!!

At 7/07/2016 09:57:00 AM, Blogger andrea1bianco said...

I think that the website is for promotion and for legacy issues. Separate releases of these contents will follow soon.
So Tired.

At 7/07/2016 11:51:00 AM, Blogger Andy said...

I'd be cool with just a website, no physical release. It would do all the same stuff the Blu rays do, but would (hopefully) be less expensive. I bought the Archives I Blu rays, glad I did, but in honesty it was a little pricey for what you got.

With a website, you could watch the clips and listen to the music on your TV using a Chromecast or Roku. There are many ways to listen to music from a website on your stereo, too.

Plus, and this only a personal preference, the sound on my computer is nicer than my TV!

Archives I was 20 years in the making. If Archives II only takes 10 years, I'd call that a victory!

Of course, if there is a physical release, I'll buy it!

At 7/07/2016 02:37:00 PM, Blogger Genghis Kon said...

How would this digital website format work exactly? I can't see it being something free to access, considering all the hard work that has been put into it. Would you need to pay for a code to access the site? I'm hyped to see Archives 2 return to the spotlight, but all I want is the ability to download the music onto my phone so I can take it on the go. Bonus points if it comes in a good old fashioned physical format like volume 1. Also, being 18, I think I have a 50/50 shot of seeing this release in my lifetime. I'm willing to wait, Neil. Just make it worth that wait.

At 7/07/2016 03:19:00 PM, Blogger Arthur said...

The word Dume might be a little confusing to some. Sounds like doom.....
And having something physical or solid to help with the experience like
even just a photo maybe.

Point Dume is close by the Malibu Colony and right above Zuma Beach in California.
Dylan had a home right above the beach when his family was young and I'm sure
Neil and Dylan saw a lot of each other in those days,the early seventies.
Neil had a place in Malibu.

Copy and paste here to see Point Dume and Zuma Beach......>

I cruise this site a lot listening to music. Can't afford to live there though!
Find the cost of freedom? We're still paying, but that's beside the point.

And as for a new site for Archives 2, well this suits me fine for now. This and the great TW! And if you have a large monitor and a sub woofer with satellite speakers to go with it, you're there, virtually anyway. And if you're easily amused..... like me.

Neil may be Canadian by birth, but he's a California boy too.
Brian Wilson was a native Californian but never surfed.
Both border less in mind and heart.

Like Johnny Moondog yelped, " My father was of the sky! My mother was of the EARTH!
But I am of the universe....."

Neil is universal now and at this stage of his career, that's a pretty good place to be I think.

At 7/07/2016 03:34:00 PM, Blogger thrasher said...

@ Ian - agree that this isn't an "either/or" situation between new stuff and continuing work on the Archives. But realistically, Neil focuses like a laser on a project. All or nothing. If he's messing with Archives he's not playing w/ POTR or writing or whatever.

@ Peter D - good points. It's probably safe to assume the distribution concept will continue to evolve.

@ timothy - and are we not getting great new music from NY almost every day? Maybe not dropping a RNS or a RG everyday but awesome 3+ hour concerts with back catalog gems. We're a happy camper with the old man's on golden pond era, thank you.

@ GK - we'd say it's all TBD... just like NYA #1.

@ Arthur - thanks for the geography on Pt Dume. interesting connection to Zuma Beach.

@ flyingscotzman - Refresh our memories here on Dume in Waging Heavy Peace if you will please.

@ So Tired - good to hear from you! Off to some Italy concerts?!

At 7/07/2016 03:44:00 PM, Blogger Babbo B. said...

"Dume" is Neil's name for the tracks from the Zuma sessions, recorded at Briggs' house on Pint Dume - along with the released album that includes such outtakes as the original Sedan Delivery (which later surfaced on Chrome Dreams), Powderfinger, Ride My Llama and Born to Run.

At 7/12/2016 08:57:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I want to know is what happened to BD Live from Archives One and can I still use the MP3 download card?

I love Neil's music but I paid for those and if they're not available anymore that's a rip-off basically....

At 7/12/2016 08:58:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I want to know is what happened to BD Live from Archives One and can I still use the MP3 download card?

I love Neil's music but I paid for those and if they're not available anymore that's a rip-off basically....

At 7/22/2016 10:47:00 PM, Blogger Lone Red Rider said...

Yes, BD-Live was a casualty of the passage of time. The Archives Server is off-line and the BD-Live tracks, even the ones you have already downloaded, are not playable. Abandoned. Orphaned. I am sure those tracks and the planned ones which were never released are now being held hostage until the web version or the Archives is released. I am expecting a website with some sort of Tidal integration. That would be best case. Worst case is Neil is waiting for a technology which streams 192/24 FLAC files.

At 8/18/2016 11:01:00 PM, Blogger Lone Red Rider said...

and the waiting goes on....

At 9/03/2016 02:33:00 AM, Blogger Alan said...

I am thrilled to hear news of pending Archives 2 release!!! Thanks Thrasher. I am just glad that Neil Young SAID he would set aside time to put it out. And the new stuff. Yes, the new stuff is great. I love the new album. But then I March Against Monsanto. I love almost everything the guy puts out. He is a prophet of sorts. Did he not correctly assess the banking bailout on FitR? But his music takes me away, old stuff, new stuff. I saw Neil Young and Promise of the Real in Seattle last Oct 4th. It was epic, incredible. A long show played with skill and passion. And Neil hadn't looked this happy since he last toured with Crazy Horse for PP. So, given the opportunity, I got a ticket to see Neil Young play in Boise on 10/3! I am beyond thrilled at the prospect of seeing them again on the same tour 365 days later exactly (due to leap year)… 1 year. I once saw Stevie Ray Vaughan at the start and end of a tour that began in LA in 87 and ended in San Diego in 88. I digress… Elated, electrified, ecstatic, joy, jubilation…. this is what I hope the afterlife largely consists of: seeing Neil Young play live! Anyway, for now, this show will really do the trick. And, its nice to know there are concert videos on the way. Now off to see Wilco play live. Our Hero is still blowing it up, like a jet engine in a hurricane, and sounding magnificent with these sons of Willie Nelson and band. Glad I will see them at Boise Botanical Garden instead of "Desert Trip" in the land of exhorbitant ticket price$…California. Boise will be chill. I will be up front in the GA making friends with the locals fans. Driving 8 hours one way to see Neil Young play live is no sweat. Shit, how many times did I drive across California to see the Grateful Dead? Many. This guys in a different league. He is a high caliber hitter. Old Black will crack open the Heavens in his hands that night. I predict they will play a long and excellent DBtR…. after all, its near a river. Peace. Alan in Seattle. PS-Vote Bernie (or Jill Stein!) Save Earth!

At 12/17/2016 01:38:00 AM, Blogger VdG said...

I'll agree and I've to say I'm totally disappointed 'bout Neil.
The idea of the Archives was brilliant and I enjoyed the Archives....
Soon, I felt that the whole thing ends in a total rip off. For Archives 2 there appears another fairytale on the horizon: "PLEASE, Mr. Young, leave me alone. I've got enough of your absurd behaviour!

At 4/11/2017 09:51:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Could anyone help please? I bought the DVD archive vol1, but cannot find online where to download the MP3 with my code? Is it as I fear too late after release?


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