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Sunday, March 21, 2021

"RUST BUCKET" DVD Audio Issues: Neil Young Owns It and Steps Up - UPDATED


Neil Young is stepping up on the issue regarding the DVD audio on ‘Way Down in the Rust Bucket’. (Thanks Harm & Road Dawg!)

As background, a TW reader commented back in February on the audio concerns on the DVD versus the CD, LP or hi-res files. The TW commenter -- Mr. Harm -- then followed up directly with NYA with a Letter to Editor to which Neil Young personally responds.

Neil Young's response is noteworthy in its transparency, honesty, accountability, and integrity.  


Hi Neil,
First of all, my compliments on the sound of Way Down in the Rust Bucket, the Hi-Res sounds awesome and of course it's a killer show, ragged but right!
However, the sound differs greatly from the video that's in the Hearse Theatre and the DVD, which seems to have a much narrower stereo image and more low end compared to the CD and Hi-Res. When the videos were previewed weekly last year they did have the wider stereo image. What happened?
Best regards,
Harm (from the Netherlands).

Dear Harm
I know what happen

I thought you were listening on NYA to the live production sound of the RUST BUCKET at Catalyst - ie camera mics and PA leakage - a very exciting and rough sound. Then we (J Hanlon) mixed the master multi-track for the record that many folks love. When we tried the record mix for the DVD, I thought it was too smooth and not live enough like the NYA presentation was. At that point we did some customized mastering to the record mix to make it sound more like the live camera audio I thought you were hearing on NYA. That was my BIG mistake. On NYA, you were actually hearing the real J Hanlon master mixes we did for the album, except at a lower resolution.

This whole thing was my error. I own it. I was working alone at the time and did not have a full audio team to advise me. One of them would have pointed out to me that the mixes people loved on NYA were the record masters at a lower resolution (because we needed lower res to stream easily). - NOT the camera audio I thought you were hearing on NYA. My bad.

So, I agree with you! The sound on the DVD is not as good as it should be or could have been.

If you write us back and give us an address and a pic of your DVD we will send you a new free version with the NYA sound you love on it. We are making a special edition of Rust Bucket with that great audio track for folks like you who heard it here and loved it. It will be ready well within a month.

The original DVDs we had made for NYA are here now, but they have the problem. Crunch. That’s NYA eating them!!!! DANG

It actually makes me quite happy that you have that love for the original sound of J Hanlon’s mix!. It gives us faith! Thanks for caring! Write us back and give us an address and a pic. We will send you the quality you deserve.

We are now investigating the Return to Greendale DVDs.

be well

Thanks Harm & Neil!

As we mentioned above, Neil's ownership here is inspiring.  


  Neil  Steps Up and Owns It


To step up -- man up -- own the problem and the solution is the definition of leadership. Not to veer too far here, but why are we finding leadership in a musician?!

While we're not looking for a Leader (b/c #WT1sWBW4), we can only wish that others in positions of leadership and authority would also fully own their mistakes and take personal steps to address. The lack of full, personal accountability in our societies is what is really, truly deplorable.

UPDATE: via comment by tomatron

"Just got a reply from NYA about Rust Bucket DVD audio quality replacements. Send an email to: with your name and address, a photo of the DVD or of your receipt, and the name of the store where you bought it."

More on ‘Way Down in the Rust Bucket’ by Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse.


‘Way Down in the Rust Bucket’  - Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse
"Let me go on record as saying that I think this 'Way Down in the Rust Bucket" is the best Crazy Horse record we ever recorded.
 I love it! "
~ Frank “Poncho” Sampedro, Rolling Stone -  March 2, 2021

Labels: , ,


At 3/21/2021 05:01:00 PM, Blogger Old Black said...

Very, very commendable of Neil, it really is refreshing to have someone own up to their own errors in this day and age, but where does it leave people like myself who have received an email in the last few days saying that our dvd's are in the post? Am I now going to be stuck with an inferior sounding dvd? I ordered the dvd because I loved what I viewed and more importantly, what I heard. Will Neil replace our dvd's too, and supply us all with what we thought we'd ordered in the first place?

At 3/21/2021 05:49:00 PM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

If I could deal with just one admin person who had the same spine, I would be forever grateful.

At 3/22/2021 02:15:00 AM, Blogger Roberto said...

Dear Neil aka Mr. Young

Admiring the honesty and straightforwardess of your message DVD content I would ask you: why not to allow Rust and Patrons the right for 1 download of WDITRB movie?

Such a crazy idea for the Horse masterpiece show!

Thank you in any case


At 3/22/2021 03:44:00 AM, Blogger ANDREW BYROM said...

@roberto Great idea

At 3/22/2021 11:37:00 AM, Blogger eddie77 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 3/22/2021 11:38:00 AM, Blogger eddie77 said...

Are the Rust Bucket and RTG DVDs only available through the Greedy Hand Store?

At 3/22/2021 04:18:00 PM, Blogger Thomas said...

This is reminiscent of the release of Weld: Neil and Billy went in and remixed the original Briggs’ mix of weld
The album eventually released featured the Neil/Billy mix
The home video had the original Briggs mix

And to top it off those mixing sessions back in 91 lead to Neil suffering from tinnitus!!

In 1991, Neil Young & Crazy Horse released a live concert album titled "Weld." However, while mixing the live rock and roll album, Young claims that it affected his hearing. “That's why I really regret it," he said. "I hurt my ears and they'll never be the same again."

“I made 'Harvest Moon' because I didn't want to hear any loud sounds. I still have a little bit of tinnitus but fortunately now I'm not as sensitive to loud sounds as I was for a year after the mixing of 'Weld'," he said. "My hearing's not perfect but it's OK.”

Will there be a new third mix with the upcoming Weld 3LP reissue?
And a fourth for the DVD!?!

Ultimately I don’t really care too much - I just want the music!!!! And Neil is in a giving mood right now

I’ve been revisiting the NYA timeline concert from Sweden 2001 - that deserves a proper release - as does the Hunter Valley 2013 set - looking forward to more timeline performances going up soon hopefully

At 3/22/2021 09:37:00 PM, Blogger Arcwels said...

The audio mix from the weld DVD is really good. It seems to have a more natural sound. Looking forward to the year of the horse tour DVD and cd. Though the tracks differ...a couple are duplicated is the mix different? ...I remember reading in ICE magazine in 96 that change your mind was to be on the year of the horse cd, then pulled a few weeks prior to release.

At 3/23/2021 06:00:00 AM, Blogger Thomas said...

I was just listening to the year of the horse album today - it doesn’t jump out as being a particularly great live album - i think the grainy super 8 images in the film elevate this material live and make it more worthy
Not sure about the mixes on this one though
Loved the documentary - Jarmusch is a genius

At 3/23/2021 06:46:00 AM, Blogger Thomas said...

I don’t think the year of the horse album is particularly bad either I should state

I was looking at the performance series numbering earlier: dreamin man is 12 and return to greendale is 16 so there'sat least 3 releases In between to come
Mirror Ball live has to be one
What are the other two????

At 3/23/2021 07:33:00 AM, Blogger Harm said...

I'm glad he answered my question and took the appropriate action. I found out about the different mix through watching the video in the Hearse Theater and discussing the matter with people that already received the DVD as part of the deluxe box. My DVD is still in pre-order as I ordered it through the EU store, which as a release date of June 23. Hopefully they'll rectify the issue in time for and us Europeans receive the 'correct' mix.

At 3/23/2021 08:46:00 AM, Blogger John said...

I got my DVD as part of the box set does that mean I can get mine replaced as well? Bought it from the local record shop, are they going to replace the DVD in the UK?

At 3/23/2021 11:23:00 AM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

@ John : I too got both deluxe editions from my local record store, so I assume we’re going to be required to take a picture and send it in to NYA with our mailing address. This is just my assumption of course.

Peace 🙏

At 3/23/2021 02:43:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Would it not be smarter to enclose the order conformation instead of a picture? And besides, can anybody please tell me how to send a picture/order conformation to NYA when you use the contact link on the Contrarian? The contact form has no button to enclose anything. Have I missed something here?

At 3/23/2021 02:56:00 PM, Blogger Old Black said...

I'm a UK resident and having had issues with the UK Greedy Hand, I ordered my DVD from the U.S store. It's on it's way. The Greedy Hand worldwide know who has bought the DVD either on it's own or as part of a deluxe set, so sending replacements to those customers should be a piece of cake. It's only customers who bought theirs from other sources that should need to supply proof etc etc. Come on NYA, do the right thing, stand by your motto - "Quality whether you want it or not."

At 3/24/2021 01:58:00 AM, Blogger JWG24 said...

I loved the NYA version of Rust Bucket! I'll see what I can see and hear what I can hear on NYA basic subscription. Certainly worth subscribing to. As far as upgrades, the PONO experience is still fresh in my mind so I'm a bit cautious in the quest for quality.

At 3/24/2021 03:43:00 AM, Blogger Thos said...

Actually JWG24 you make a good point there. I watched and waited while many here upgraded to Blu-ray Live so hey could access the extra archives material, which then dried up. Then I watched as many committed to Pomo with the expectation that support and the online store would run indefinitely, but that dried up. It’s not really a criticism, I think Neil just gets distracted by other things, but this is why I am hesitant to commit to being a full patron as I worry any benefits will fall by the wayside once there is a new project on the go. Although with it being an annual subscription, maybe that incentivises him to keep offering decent exclusives?
Maybe I’m actually talking myself into it!

At 3/25/2021 03:20:00 PM, Blogger Old Black said...

I emailed NYA and pointed out all that I said in my post (at the top of this thread) and they've replied today. Word for word it says:

Hello, Thanks for reaching out.

Please send an email to with the following information:

1. Your name and address.
2. Attach a photo of your DVD (or a copy of your receipt).
3. The name of the store where you bought it.

We will return a new DVD to you when the replacement discs arrive. You do not have to return the DVD that you bought.

If you run into any further issues with this process, let us know, and please reach out.

Thank you,
The Archives Team.

You can't say fairer than that can you? A nice example of transparency, decency, and customer service. Thanks NYA!

At 3/26/2021 08:02:00 AM, Blogger Jonathan said...

Old Black - thank you for that info - I just sent them my email DVD replacement request.

Last night I threw in 2nd CD of WDITRB & the sound quality is strikingly better than the current DVD mix no doubt about it.

I kind of like them both go figure.

At 3/26/2021 11:47:00 AM, Blogger thrasher said...

@ Old Black - thanks so much for sharing details.

outstanding solution. we'll post on TW this weekend.

@ Alan - glad you're diggin' what's not to figure?!

At 3/26/2021 01:58:00 PM, Blogger Old Black said...

I (not too seriously I might add) wonder if the poorer sounding version will become a collectors item, an official but unintentional bootleg, hey maybe that's another category for the archive release series!

Joking apart, I came home today to some post from Neil, I got all excited hoping it was my inferior sounding rust bucket dvd, but it was ANOTHER certificate of authenticity for my volume 2 box....go figure.....

At 3/26/2021 06:01:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Just rolling through TW while listening to my first run with the Rust Bucket DVD and thought it sounded different than the NYA broadcast. Found this thread about it at about 45 minutes in. Talk about knowledge!! WOW, you guys are good! And that dang Neil Young standing up for it and coming through again. That's why he's the best, and flies the skies above all the others in the business. Integrity!! Now back to the scheduled Friday Night programming!!!


At 3/28/2021 02:02:00 PM, Blogger Aer Stephen said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 4/05/2021 09:25:00 PM, Blogger GmbArb said...

Received email from the Greedy Hand Store. Email stated the new improved sound quality replacement DVD for Rust Bucket is in manufacturing. As soon as the new DVD is ready they will email me & ship the DVD my way. That's awesome news & great service. I am absolutely crazy about this release. The cd has not left my car since I received it. What a great release.
Cheers Neil
This joint for You


At 7/24/2021 09:46:00 AM, Blogger Ciaran said...

did anyone else end up with 2 copies of the DVD? I ordered one, got one a few weeks ago, then another arrived via USA post to UK.

At 7/27/2021 05:23:00 PM, Blogger Norman Reid said...

Just got my second DVD today with New Audio prominent on the back cover.
Well done to Neil and NYA!!


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