Das Toblerone, it plays zee music no?

Oh Neil, you should just stick to writing music and not supplying us with yet another expensive toy to listen to our music on. I know what the goal is here but really, the cost far outweighs the benefit. Neil Young had a vision of folks being able to listen to high quality music on a portable music player. The files for this music is on the flac format. Yes it is high quality but the files are enormous. Mp3 files for a 3.5 min song will run a few megs in size. Flac files for the same 3.5min song will be literally 10x the size. A 10 song album could easily surpass a couple of gigs easily. So why even bring this up at all if its a music player I’m just dumping on? I like to think of it more as a consumer beware. For some, money is no object for others, it’s a difference maker. Each year people buy millions of these devices only to have them end up in landfills. Spend your money wisely. If you spend this kind of cash, buy a real stereo system.

For a review of this device, check out the Ars Technica article:



Special Deluxe – Neil Young, Cars and Dogs but mostly cars.

I saw the interview on Stephen Colbert’s show a few weeks back and I happened to be at the library and saw a copy. I like Neil so I picked it up. The book was o.k. Its just as described in the forward to the book. He originally wanted to name it Cars and Dogs but he felt this would attract the wrong crowd to this book. Eh, whatever. There are snippets of interesting music stories, among them, the first time he saw Randy Backman playing in a local band. Playing in another band with Rick James! His collaboration with Stephen Stills when he first got to Los Angeles, etc. The stories about cars were not so interesting but Young’s passion for cars is evident. He loved to collect and restore classic American cars. There is a larger story which could have actually been the subject of another book and that is the worlds reliance on fossil fuels. The last half of the book is about getting an old car fitted with an electric system and how he went across both the United States and Canda preaching about our reliance on gas and that we need to make a change. There is even a story about the Alberta oil fields which is full of tar sand which is of course some of the worse forms of fossil fuels due to the high carbon output when burned. What is worse is the amount of polluted/poison water that is collected in small or not so small lakes. The immediate dangers to the surrounding wildlife, including huge air cannons that fire randomly to freighten away the wildlife so they don’t drink the water. However, these cannons are not always successful in scaring away animals. There is a story of a bear family trying to cross the lake but dying on the way through because of the highly toxic water. Over all, if you can find his first book, music fans would probably find that book much more interesting to read. If you’re a Neil Young fan, this book is still for you.