Neil Young / After the Gold Rush – Heavy Vinyl Reviewed

More of the Music of Neil Young

Reviews and Commentaries for After the Gold Rush

Sonic Grade: F

A Hall of Shame pressing and a Heavy Vinyl Disaster if there ever was one (and oh yes, there are plenty).

I won’t go into too much detail discussing the sound of this new pressing because, frankly, it’s just not worth anybody’s time, even mine, and I do this for a living. 

We know what the good pressings of the album sound like, we play them regularly, and this newly remastered vinyl is missing almost everything that makes the album essential to any Right Thinking Music Lover’s collection.

We can summarize the sound of this awful record in one word: boring. Since some of you may want to know more than that we’ll be happy to break it down for you a bit further.

What It Does Right

It’s tonally correct. Unlike many modern pressings, it is not overly smooth.

Uh, can’t think of anything else…

What It Does Wrong

Where to begin?

It has no real space or ambience. When you play this record it sounds as if they must have recorded it in a heavily padded studio. Somehow the originals of After the Gold Rush, like most of Neil’s classic albums from the era, are clear, open and spacious. Cleverly the engineers responsible for this audiophile remastering have managed to reproduce the sound of a dead studio on a record that wasn’t recorded in one.

In addition, the record never gets loud. The good pressings get very loud. They rock, they’re overflowing with energy.

And, lastly, there’s no real weight to the bottom end. The Whomp Factor on this new pressing is practically non-existent. The bottom end of the originals is huge, deep and powerful.

The Bottom Line

This new Heavy Vinyl pressing is boring beyond all understanding. I wouldn’t give you a nickel for it. If Neil Young actually had anything to do with it he should be ashamed of himself.

If you want a good copy of the album, find a vintage pressing. Please don’t waste your money on this one.

2 comments

  1. Hello, Yes, I agree. I have a Techics linier tracking turntable ,a Sansui reciever and full range 8 inch Dayton speakers. I use it to record to my cassette deck. Last night I decided to make a tape of two Neil Young albums . The first was “At the Cellar Door” which sounded wonderfull, very smooth ,clear and analog proper. I was telling my wife who likes his music to, we should buy some more of his albums. Then I recorded my 180 gram reissue of ” After the Gold Rush” , so after a while of listening I notice it just sounds a little distorted from top to to buttom. So yea, I paid a lot of money for this cooy. Both of these are made from the same record Label. I dont know if it was mastered by the same engineers or the pressing plant or what.
    So, I have another two copies of this album in question. One is original and the other is on the double album Decade’s issue. I’ll find em and hear what I hear.

    1. It should not sound distorted. It should sound dead as a doornail. The two are very different. Since you cannot adjust your VTA for the thicker vinyl you will have trouble playing it properly I would expect.

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