Neil Young’s new record, A Letter Home, is due out this March. Rolling Stone confirmed the upcoming release in an interview with Young, in which the legendary rocker says the project is “one of the lowest-tech experiences” he’s ever had. What that means exactly remains to be seen, but the suggestion has led some to suggest that perhaps the whole record was created under the watchful eye of Jack White in the Third Man Record Booth. It's a tad far-fetched, though surely not outside the realm of possibility; after all, Young already recorded one track, a cover of Bert Jansch’s “Needle Of Death,” in the booth last year.
Young is also gearing up to launch his new digital music service, PONO, at this year’s South By Southwest Music Conference. While it might not seem like the world needs yet another digital music service, Young swears that PONO is different—and from the sound of things, it just might be. Basically, PONO takes its music directly from “artist-approved” masters and formats tracks in a way that maintains studio quality. This means no more compression loss, a move that PONO says gives the songs “primal power.”
PONO has already signed a deal with Warner Music Group to remaster all the material in its catalogs for distribution on its specialized service.