Friday, November 6, 2009

Neil Young Reissues Are Available For Pre-Order Now!

Breaking news just in from Warner Bros Records to my email box. I am excited to post this, Neil Young has always been a favorite, heck, I own everything he's ever released. This is a true master pleasing his fans with this special boxed set, grab your today!

DATELINE — Burbank, CA — As part of its ongoing Archives reissue campaign with legendary singer-songwriter Neil Young, Reprise Records will release re-mastered versions of the first four of Young’s classic solo albums, 1969’s Neil Young and Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, 1970’s After the Gold Rush, and 1972’s Harvest.

These very special reissues, which will be available on November 24th, have each been re-mastered from the original analog master tapes by Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering Studios in Hollywood, CA.

The albums are being reissued on both vinyl and compact disc.

The individual albums are being issued on 140 gram vinyl to retail.

There is also a box set of the four albums pressed on audiophile 180 gram vinyl.
Vinyl will be pressed at Pallas MFG/Germany—the world’s premiere record-pressing plant.

The box sets will be individually numbered in gold foil stamp and strictly limited to 3,000 units worldwide. They will only be available through and

Tom Biery, General Manager of Warner Bros. Records and vinyl enthusiast commented:

”In all my years of working vinyl releases, I was shocked at just how incredible these Neil Young re-masters sound. There is no doubt in my mind that when listening to these recordings on the new, upgraded vinyl format, it will be as close as anyone will audibly come to actually being in the studio listening to the original master tapes. It now sounds as if you are in the room with Neil during the session."

The four albums will also be released on 24 karat gold CDs, packaged in Gary Burden designed cardboard wallet packs. The four gold CD albums are housed in a numbered slip case, limited to 2,500 worldwide, and available only through and

All four titles have already been released to retail on standard CDs, housed in jewel boxes.

On June 2nd, Reprise Records released Young’s highly anticipated collection Archives Volume 1 1963-1972—the first of several in the Archives series of CD box sets that focus on the life of one of the most original artists of the rock era. This collection, which is also available on Blu-Ray and DVD, is currently in stores. Of Young’s Archives series, the Chicago Sun-Times has written: “Not only is it absolutely amazing, it quite possibly is a model for the only kind of recorded product that independent and chain stores alike will still be selling in the post-CD future.” Raved the Chicago Tribune: “The Archives appears to be nothing less than revolutionary in how it will present an artist's back catalog.”

The Archives Volume 1 1963-1972 covered Neil Young’s recorded career up to and including his first four album releases.

For more on Neil Young and the ongoing Archives series, please visit

Thrill of the hunt: Vinyl predators can nab precious finds


Serious record collectors are hunters, often seen rummaging through thrift shop bins and garage sales, searching for the rarest game possible.

Toronto’s Akim Boldireff and Aaron Keele (The Record Guys) have found some super rare recordings over their careers, often being sold by folks with no idea of the record’s worth. You, the reader may have a small fortune in old records.

Boldireff and Keele want to appraise your collection at The Toronto Downtown Record Show this Sunday. They will be among 60 different vendors, staffed with experts. Getting several quotes on your collection has never been easier.

“People sell rarities because they don’t know what they’re worth,” explains Boldireff by phone. “In North York I found a $700 copy of the first Rush recording, the one on the old Moon Label, before the band had a record deal, with different cover art and mixing.

“It cost me a dollar,” he says happily.

That sounds like a once-in-a-lifetime find, but Boldireff assures me it’s not. “That far from my biggest discovery,” he says. “Part of the challenge for a collector is knowing what’s worth what. For example, many people don’t know Plastic Cloud, but this Canadian ’60s psychedelic group’s only record is worth a solid grand. I found it in Toronto, also for a buck.”

A rarity’s value depends on what a collector is willing to pay, which is partly to do with being a fan of a band as well as loving rare records. That’s why record shows like this one are so helpful: Different collectors offer different prices. Also, the needs of individual collectors change regularly over time.

“I just have about 10,000 records at home,” he says, “but I’ve been collecting for decades now, and so that’s just a fraction of what I’ve bought over the years. Collectors know their purchases are investments and can become cash quick if bills have to be paid.”

Obviously a collector can’t keep a copy of every record, which is why shows like these will always be a great opportunity for vinyl fiends. This is also where you can discover if you’re a real record hunter; capital C Collectors like the stalking part most of all.

“The chase is in often better than the catch,” says Boldireff, paraphrasing Mötorhead. The Toronto Downtown Record Show isn’t just a place for sweet deals; it’s a way to learn about the worth of your collection, or of that collection someone left in your basement.

The Toronto Downtown Record Show takes place @ The Estonian Banquet Hall, 958 Broadview Ave. on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Michael Fremer Review

I am very proud to continue our feature (look for this every Friday), music reviews that are written by the senior contributing editor of Stereophile magazine- Michael Fremer. It has been a pleasure to speak with Michael and learn more about audio sound and equipment. In fact, his new DVD, "It's A Vinyl World, After All" has hit the shelves and is selling out very quickly. This is a must have for anybody who loves vinyl, it is a true masterpiece.

Neil Young (new reissue)
Neil Young Official Release Series Discs 1-4 Box Set

Warner Brothers/Reprise 4 180g LP, numbered Box Set
Produced by: Neil Young, Jack Nitzsche, David Briggs, Elliot Mazer, others
Engineered by: various engineers
Mixed by: various mixers
Mastered by: Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering

Review by: Michael Fremer

When Buffalo Springfield broke up, Neil Young set about building his solo career. The high-production work with Jack Nitzsche that had created classics like “Expecting to Fly” and “Broken Arrow” brought Neil back to the producer/keyboardist/orchestrator, who gained fame working with Phil Spector but the results on Young’s eponymous debut album were not as memorable. In fact, many critics and fans alike back in 1969 considered the album a disappointment and a misstep.

The “overproduction” charge was compounded by two issues: first was the original mix that buried Young’s voice, second was the label’s disastrous choice to master using the Haeco-CSG system. Invented by Howard Holzer, A&M’s chief engineer, Haeco-CSG was about cost cutting not sonic improvement.

By the late ‘60s, stereo had taken hold among album buying youngsters but most rock was still heard on AM radio or FM in the car, which was mostly monophonic. Stereo records played back monophonically usually produced terrible results: folding stereo down to mono upped common L/R information by 3 dB, which is major. That means vocals placed in both channels so they’d appear in the phantom center channel would be way too loud in mono. Not many rock singers of the era needed that kind of exposure, so Holzer invented a system to deal with the problem.

Unfortunately, his solution was to phase-shift common L/R right information so that it didn’t get the 3dB boost. Imagine, though, what happened to image focus and soundstage clarity! It produced a sonic mess that ruined many releases of the era, including Neil’s debut and Roots The Everly Brothers’ superb “comeback” album that inexplicably hasn’t been reissued yet on vinyl.

Neil remixed the first album, made sure it was mastered without Haeco-CSG and put a wide banner with his name on it at the top of the front cover in an effort to save the debut but it was too late. The album never recovered. Relatively rare original pressings with the first cover, mix and Haeco-CSG processing were quite collectible for a time, going for hundreds of dollars. I’m not sure what the going rate is today.

Time has actually been kind to Young’s debut. “The Loner” and “I’ve Been Waiting For You” are fuzz-tone laden standouts. “I’ve Loved Her Too Long” maintains its warm grip and even the surreal, Dylanesque overreach of “The Last Trip to Tulsa,” with Young’s acoustic guitar center stage and his voice off on the right channel, arrives nicely burnished through the time tunnel.

One could argue that the first album isn’t a high priority but no one would say that of the next three in this four, 180g LP box set: Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, After the Goldrush and Harvest.

With a set list that includes “Cinnamon Girl,” the title tune, “Round and Round,” “Down By The River,” and “Cowgirl In The Sand,” the second album with Crazy Horse is a hard-rocking, no-nonsense follow-up to the tentative debut and contains no filler. But surely you didn’t need to be told that.

Nor do you need to be told about the enduring folk/rock brilliance of After the Goldrush or Young’s greatest album chart success Harvest. If you do, you’re not forking over the big bucks for this 180g box set anyway. You’re more likely to opt for a 140g individual album or two.

What you’re really interested in hearing about is the sound quality of these reissues. But first a word about the packaging: Warner Brothers has gone to the trouble and expense of using deluxe paper over cardboard jackets that are authentic to the originals, though there are barcodes, new catalog numbers and updated mastering credits— all tastefully and respectfully done. All original posters and inserts are included. Pick up the new Harvest and you’ll be hard-pressed to tell it from the original, so perfectly does the new, thick outer paper stock match the original.

What’s very different about these reissues though, is the sound: I have multiple originals of all of them, including both the original Haeco-CSG version of the debut album and the re-do (obviously, though Warner Brothers and Young went with the original cover, the second mix was used) and I have to tell you, these reissues, mastered by Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman and pressed at Pallas in Germany (buy a copy of my second DVD It’s a Vinyl World, After All and you can take a guided tour of Pallas, shot in high definition), sound far superior to the originals.

Look, I’ve been listening to these four albums for up to forty years now and I was not prepared for what I heard on all four of these albums. Grundman’s chain is sounding better than ever after what I hear are a series of upgrades.

Starting with the second album, Young arranged for multiple voices, often his own multi-tracked, but never before have the individual voices been so clearly locked in three dimensional space and timbrally distinct. The way the voices project into 3D space (including Young’s main centered one) is positively eerie (assuming your system can reproduced this, because trust me, it’s in the grooves in a way it’s not on the originals). Instrumental textures are far richer, fuller and better defined. Harmonics are fully fleshed out. Reverb trails extend to infinity before disappearing into background pitch blackness. There is so much more there there in every respect, it’s almost stupefying.

You can see Young before the microphone and experience every little vocal tick and breath pressurization. It’s not important because you can hear these details. It’s important because hearing them imparts greater meaning to the proceeding and certainly a greater appreciation of his singing and the deliberateness of his communications skills.

I wish I could tell you that the 140g versions, pressed, I assume, from the same stampers, sounded as good, but even correcting for the VTA/SRA differences, they don’t. They do sound plenty good, mind you, and better than the originals, but not quite as good as the 180g versions contained in the box set. And good as the Blu-ray versions are at 192k/24 bit, they don’t touch the vinyl.

So, my advice is: when the numbered, limited edition box is finally introduced shortly, if you’re as big a Neil fan as I am, don’t hesitate until it’s too late. Buy and enjoy this box set.

Warner Brothers, thanks to the tireless and meticulous efforts of Warner Brothers Senior Vice President and vinyl fanatic Tom Biery, demonstrates yet again, that it is possible for a major label to do vinyl correctly: cutting from analog masters, pressing at the best plants and packaging to provide fans with the genuine experience. It’s sad that the others don’t have the will to properly manage the task.

Copyright © 2009 & Michael Fremer All Rights Reserved/ Reprinted by Permission

Pick up Michael's DVD's Here:

Pick up a copy of this legendary release here, just add the code CVR and receive a 5% discount on your order! NEIL YOUNG

Special Edition 'Abbey Road' To Hit Stores

Shops to sell 5,000 copies of Beatles album

U.S. independent record stores will sell a unique LP boxed-set edition, limited to 5,000 copies, of the Beatles’ Abbey Road” on Saturday as part of a series of promotions designed to drive foot traffic into stores hard-hit by the boom in digital music sales.

Exclusive 40th-anniversary vinyl edition of the album, licensed and produced by EMI, includes a T-shirt and poster featuring artwork from the collection’s two-sided hit single, “Come Together”/”Something.”

The “Vinyl Saturday” promotion is the latest stunt in the campaign dubbed “Record Store Day” involving 200 indie music retailers across the country.

Former Beatle Paul McCartney said he was happy to support the cause with what is sure to be a collector-coveted edition of “Abbey Road.”

“When I recently played Amoeba (musicstore) in L.A., I realized what fantastic memories such a collection of music bring back when you see it all in one place,” McCartney said in a statement.

In other Beatles' news:

EMI has won a temporary injunction against BlueBeat, the digital-music vendor selling Beatles tracks without permission. According to Billboard, a temporary restraining order demands the company cease selling all EMI tracks, including Beatles songs.

US District Court Judge John Walter has ordered the internet site to remove the Beatles songs that they were selling for 25 cents on their site. Bluebeat had argued that they owned the copyrights to what they were selling as they had re-recorded them as "audio visual performances with related sounds."

The judge issued a restraining order barring the site from any further streaming or selling of the songs and stated that he believed EMI would most likely win in a lawsuit against Bluebeat.

Hang Up Your Old Vinyl Records!

Hang Up Your Old Vinyl Records! - More DIY How To Projects

This Date In Music History-November 6


P.J. Proby - sang on many of Elvis Presley's demos also singer, songwriter, and actor who has portrayed Elvis Presley and Roy Orbison in musical theater productions (1938)

Guy Clark - singer, songwriter, wrote songs for Johnny Cash, Ricky Skaggs (1941)

George Young - Easybeats (1947)

John Wilson - Them (1947)

Rushton Moreve (born John Russell Morgan) - Steppenwolf (1948)

Glenn Frey - Eagles (1948)

Chris Glen - Sensational Alex Harvey Band (1950)

Paul Brindley - Sundays (1963)

Corey Glover - Living Colour (1964)

Paul Gilbert - Mr. Big (1966)

R&B singer Pebbles (1966)

Trevor Penick - O-Town (1979)

They Are Missed:

Born on this day in 1814, Adolph Sax, inventor of the saxophone (died February 4, 1894).

The late Ray Conniff was born in 1916 (died October 12, 2002).

During a UK tour in 1972, Billy Murcia of The New York Dolls died after choking on his coffee after an overdose of Mandrax. The influential band formed in 1972 and made just two albums, the 1973 "New York Dolls" and 1974 "Too Much Too Soon."

Dickie Goodman died of a self-inflicted gunshot in 1989. He created a genre of novelty records in which a narrative was illustrated with snatches from top 40 songs. With Bill Buchanan, he had a string of hits in the '50s, including the #3 "The Flying Saucer (Parts 1 & 2)." He later became the head of music for 20th Century Fox.

Born today in 1942, Doug Sahm, Tex Mex Singer, songwriter, guitarist, Sir Douglas Quintet (died November 18, 1999).


In 1954 Elvis Presley did his only commercial, for Southern-Made Doughnuts, on the "Louisiana Hayride" radio program (he also signs a year-long contract with the "Hayride").

Jimmy Dean started a five week run at #1 in 1961 with "Big Bad John."

Bill Graham, who will become one of rock's most powerful entrepreneurs, produced his first rock concert at the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco in 1965. The show featured the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane and the Charlatans.

On the night of New York City's famous blackout in 1965, Bob Dylan, the Band's Robbie Robertson and Dylan friend Bob Neuwirth jammed with Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones in his suite at the New York Hiton.

The Animals' "It's My Life" was released in 1965.

The Rolling Stones, Strangeloves and Fontella Bass appeared on "Shindig!" in 1965.

In 1967, working at Abbey Road studio in London, the Beatles mixed four songs, "Hello Goodbye," "Your Mother Should Know," "Magical Mystery Tour" and "I Am the Walrus." Due to the radio feed used in "I Am the Walrus" being recorded in mono, the song changes from stereo to mono at the line "Sitting in an English garden".

Also in 1967, during a three hour session Bob Dylan recorded "All Along The Watchtower" and "John Wesley Harding" at Columbia Recording Studios in Nashville, Tennessee.

The Monkees' three quarter of a million dollar feature film, Head opened in New York City in 1968. Instead of being aimed at their target audience of teeny boppers, the film contained a dark theme about the manipulation of the group with walk-on appearances by inappropriate guests and scenes of Vietnam War atrocities. Reviews were harsh and the picture was a box office disaster.

Aerosmith performed their first ever gig when they played at Nipmuc Regional High School in Mendon, Massachusetts in 1970.

Cher started a two week run at #1 in 1971 with "Gypsys, Tramps and Thieves," the singers first US solo #1.

The soundtrack to 'Shaft' by Isaac Hayes went to #1 on the US album chart in 1971.

Michael Jackson's first solo single, "Got to Be There" (#4 pop, #4 R&B), was released in 1971. Already he's had eight Top Forty hits with the Jackson 5, including four consecutive chart-toppers.

Also in 1971, Donald Fagen and Walter Becker were hired as staff songwriters at ABC-Dunhill Records in Los Angeles.

Deep Purple's "Machine Head" LP went gold in 1972.

In 1973, singer Gram Parsons' manager Phil Kaufman was fined $300 for stealing Parsons' body from the Los Angeles International Airport. After he took the body, Kaufman had the corpse cremated and left the ashes at the Joshua Tree monument, according, he said, to his friend's wishes.

The Sex Pistols played their first show at St. Martin's School of Art in London in 1975.

The Steve Miller Band went to #1 in 1976 with "Rock 'n' Me," the group's second #1 hit (The Joker #1 1973).

Iggy Pop releases 'Lust for Life" in 1977. The album was produced by David Bowie.

In 1980, Led Zeppelin met on the island of Jersey to discuss their future following John Bonham's death. Peter Grant remembers, "What happened was the three of them - Jimmy, Robert, and Jonesy - went over to Jersey in the Channel Islands to have a discussion of what they were going to do in the future. I had never raised the subject with them. When they came back, we arranged to rent a suite at the Savoy in London and we had afternoon tea, just the four of us. They looked at me and said, 'What do you think, Gee?' And I said I couldn't see them carrying on as it was, because it couldn't be the same. It was a very emotional moment. They all said, 'Thank God you've said that, because that's what we thought while we were away.'"

In 1982, Jennifer Warnes and Joe Cocker started a three week run at #1 with a song taken from the film An Officer And A Gentleman, "Up Where We Belong."

Meat Loaf started a five week run at #1 in 1993 with "I'd' Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)."

Pearl Jam went to #1 on the US album chart in 1993 with "Vs," selling 950,378 copies making it the highest sales in US album history in one week.

Britney Spears' album "Britney" was released in 2001.

Winners at the 2003 MTV awards included Christina Aguilera for Best female, Coldplay won Best group, Justin Timberlake won Best album for ‘Justified’, The Panjabi MC won best dance act. Best R&B act went to Beyonce. Eminem won the best hip-hop act award for the fifth year running. Reggae artist Sean Paul took the best new act award and best video was won by Sigur Ros. An estimated one billion people in 28 countries watched the show, which was held in Edinburgh, Scotland for the first time.

In 2005, Clear Channel agreed to remove posters with 50 Cent holding a gun in one hand and a microphone in the other in the Los Angeles area after a rally was held in protest, the company also agreed to remove 21 posters in Philadelphia. The posters were plugging the rapper’s forthcoming film 'Get Rich or Die Tryin.' "The message could be 'rob to get rich' said Bilal Qayyum, a leader of the anti violence group Men United for a Better Philadelphia.

In 2005, Madonna scored her 36th Top Ten single with "Hung Up," equaling the record with Elvis Presley for the most Top Ten singles. "Hung Up" was also Madonna's 47th Top Forty single, the most for any female artist.

Brooks & Dunn and Kenny Chesney were the big winners at the annual CMA Awards in 2006, but the ceremony is most memorable for Faith Hill's outraged reaction when she loses best female vocalist to American Idol's Carrie Underwood.

In 2007, previously unreleased live tracks from Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan and Jackson Browne were featured on the "Serve2" compilation. Proceeds from the album benefit the World Hunger Year charity's Artists Against Hunger & Poverty initiative.

Queen + Paul Rodgers Live From the Ukraine was shown in high-definition and surround-sound audio in more than 300 U.S. theaters in 2008. The footage was from a concert just two months earlier in Kharkov.