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post #61 of 9003 Old 07-23-2003, 09:11 PM
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Originally posted by Gary McCoy
For those of you who want a glimpse of how good a concert can be, at least from a technology standpoint, check out an HDTV broadcast of the newly revamped PBS series Soundstage this season. These concerts are shot in achingly clear high definition video (1080i/60fps) and offer 5.1 Dolby surround sound. They are incredible. Last week was "Alison Krause and Union Station", and I was totally blown away by the incredible picture and sound. Although this is a studio environment, and what you see has been edited, there is a live audience and it IS definately a concert. In the happy circumstance that the performers match your taste in music (as for me this past Sunday evening) the experience is incredible. Here's the link to find the viewing times on your local PBS affiliate - hopefully you have a digital broadcaster with surround sound capability:

http://www.pbs.org/wttw/soundstage/airdates.htm

Highly reccomended - it doesn't look or sound better than this unless you are there in person - and my 90" screen is almost that good with this quality HDTV material.

Edit: for those who want a glimpse of what I am talking about, here is a screen capture:

http://www.kaleirish.com/Allison_Krause_HDTV_02.jpg

....and when you add to this the silky smooth motion of the 60fps, the result is amazing (I realized I used "incredible" 3 times above - I don't usually do that...)

Gary

Oh ... my ... goodness!!! We just watched again parts of AK+US Live (DVD) and as nice as the high-def video looks on DVD, actual Hi-Def in your screen shot is ... stunning!!! Wow!!!!! We did see her live, 2x last year. Your shot makes me want to get a high-def DirecTV receiver.

FYI -- the 2 encore numbers are on the DVD, but not in the concert. DOWN TO THE RIVER TO PRAY is played during the credits on disc 1, and THERE IS A REASON accompanies a tribute to Frank Edmonson (their sound guy) on disc 2. Frank died last year, 49 years young.

To follow up my review, the interviews with the band members on disc 2 are very nice and well worth watching.
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post #62 of 9003 Old 07-23-2003, 09:21 PM
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Originally posted by Dynacoman
Has anyone seen the Jethro Tull DVD? Worth buying?

Jim

I was pleasantly surprised by the Tull DVD (Living With The Past). PQ is decent (it's 4x3, shot on video), there's a good blather to music ratio (each song has a little intro but they are all pretty short). There's a wonderful recreation of the original recordings of Wond'ring Aloud and Life's a Long Song done with a string quartet plus a reunion of the original line-up with Mick Abrahams, Clive Bunker and Glenn Cornick for two songs which rocks. The current line-up is great and they do a good selection of material including the best version (read: faithful to the original) of Thick As A Brick since they originally played it in 1972. Ian's voice has come back a bit and his flute playing is better than ever (he's been working to compensate for the deteriorating pipes!) Highly recommended if you're a fan.

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post #63 of 9003 Old 07-24-2003, 08:04 AM
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Originally posted by yubyub
I didn't even know this existed. I am so there. Victor Wooten gives me goosebumps. Is it the original Flecktones, with Howard Levy? Or is it the later Flecktones?

(crossing my fingers for Howard Levy).

-Jon

Later Flecktones, filmed in 2000 I believe. The lineup includes Bela (banjo), Vic (bass), Futch (drumitar), Jeff (sax), Hanson (bassoon), McCandless (English flute), Andy Narell (steel pans), Burman (tablas) and Ondar (throat singer)

The performances are amazing, the sound quality is excellent. The only gripe I have is it's not anamorphic (it's letterboxed 4:3).

It's essentially "Outbound" live.

Unrelated: check out the Live Music Archive for Flectones shows in shn. http://webdev.archive.org/audio/etree.php
It's free and approved by the band.
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post #64 of 9003 Old 07-24-2003, 08:19 AM
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If you want to see four Girls play Strings take a look at bond live at the Royal Albert Hall. They are fantasic. I enjoyed this dvd very much.
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post #65 of 9003 Old 08-31-2003, 10:33 PM
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this is one fantastic example of a well done concert DVD. Lots of beautiful country strings and high resolution sound, you can hear every pick! I was able to clearly distinguish 5 instruments at once, plus the vocals, the audio quality is there. The Kodak Theater looks gorgeous, Ive never seen a more pleasing concert set. The music i think is first class, the crowd participation, and the humor between songs is enjoyable, the video production is very high resolution, I just LOVE this DVD. The director did a stunning job of capturing the ambience of a live country concert.

THe Dixie Chicks play their full "Home" album, and a couple of their older tunes at the end. This is a best selling record for a reason....

It is only full frame; but it stretches nicely to wide screen, as long as you dont mind slightly wider chicks

8 or 9 bucks at Costco!
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post #66 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 09:13 AM
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Nazareth at Camden Palace 1985 - Brazilian Import - Professional packaging, Dolby 2.0 and Dolby 5.1. This was the raspy-voiced hard rock band of the 70s, with hits like Hair Of The Dog and Love Hurts.

Filmed by Trillion Pictures film, the Audio and Video quality is technically there. THe sound is good, especially for the time period, though its not quite up to par with modern live recordings, still, I was pleasantly suprised. The video image quality also was very good, but the director seemed completely uninspired. They never put the cameras on the audience, they never attempted to catch the ambience of the concert, which i consider very important. This is a common problem with many 70s/80s concert DVDs and films. They had enough cameras and lighting, why not use it?

The performance started weak, but got a little better. None of the players have any real charisma, but they played competently, and did faithful renditions of their songs, and did a decent mix of tunes. If you like Nazareth, this isnt a bad DVD. Im not sure how many more times I will watch it, I will probably skip around it once in a while: they have a few very strong tunes like "Beggars Day" and "Hair Of The Dog". The performances do come across a bit stiffly though.... I wouldnt be that suprised if this whole performance was really in some TV studio, and made to look like it was at a concert, haha.

They put out strong albums in their day, probably stronger than this DVD, we may be better off just looking for thier albums on CD. I especially like thier first album, which was really offbeat, with bagpipes and all, called "Indian Exercises".
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post #67 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 09:16 AM
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Prince "Sign O' The Times", Brazilian import, filmed in 1987. The packaging looks professional, and is in Dolby 5.1 and 2.0 audio, all the menus are in spanish, but easy to figure out.

First the bad: tHe sound quality is poor. This is disappointing since the rest of the production has high production values, and his performance is excellent. It not as good as FM radio. I'm thinking the top and the bottom of the audible spectrum are heavily compressed, the lows are muddy, and the highs are cut off. I played with my reciever, and made it almost passable by using soundfields.

NOW THE GOOD:This performance is simply put, the most incredible live concert performance I have ever seen.

Prince's entourage of 10-12 players all wear many hats, you will see them all individually: playing the hell out of an instrument, dancing to highly choreographed musical plays, singing, and playing other instruments, at one point all the male players are playing drums.... This troop of players will wear many hats and switch between them most often. And their performance will be perfection.

Not only that, but there is continuous motion on the stage, and not just motion for motions sake, these players are moving about the stage like they have someplace to go. The effect is like having hundreds of players entering and exiting the stage over the course of the night, but .... its all the same 10 or so people!

Combine these players with master songwriter Prince, who can wear all these hats with ease, and dance as good as his best dancer ...
... who happens to be this incredible dancer named CAT.

Cat is this ultrafast dancer that whirls around the stage like a battling top most of the time, other times shes making out with one of the actors in a skit, or climbing the walls like a sexy spider woman. Other times shes singing or wearing some other hat. But she drifts in and out of the overall performance with astonishing speed.

As does Prince, whose performance talent manages to still dominate these other incredible players, I dont know how. He can dance as fast as the fastest dancer, play his guitar as good as his best sax player can sax ... and act in the plays with expressiveness that is worthy of Hollywood.

Which brings me to the video director of this concert. The way this concert is edited will make your head spin. The scenes will constantly be switching between Prince playing some riff on his guitar, to 3 horn players in the darkness to an incredible dancer, to some other band players artfully lit like some jazz painting ...
... to Prince singing, to shiela E going nuts on the drums, with her skintight top showing why female drummers are pretty to watch ...

And all these songs are directed in a cohesive way, despite the blurringly fast editing. Light is used with mastery, much of the instrumental playing is done in near darkness, adding a jazz-like quality to the band. Colored light is also used with great effect, but the stage is mostly kept in a soothing darkness.There is a master cinematic director at work here, and to my suprise, when I read the credits, the director was ... Prince.

Now if we could find a copy of this old concert with decent sound, it would be a great DVD.
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post #68 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 09:25 AM
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Elton John, One Night Only -Greatist hits, Live at Madison Square Garden I believe this was shot in 2001 or 2002, is an excellent production, nice sound and video quality, good playing ( and Billy Joel wasnt drunk), lots of guest artists, and it starts with "Funeral For A Friend", whats not to like?
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post #69 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 09:27 AM
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This is a very authentic Queen performance from, I think, the 80s. It really captures how most heavy metal bands were back then.

At first, I wasnt that impressed with it, too many closeups of Freddie's bad teeth, very little interaction with the band, etc. ...

.... until I watched the director's comments on the incredible effort it took to film Queen in that era. The introverted band wouldnt look at the cameramen, the camera men couldnt hear the director at all, the cameramen were intimidated by the band and wouldnt get too close, the sound synchronization was based on each camera shot filming a clock that was on stage, couriers running back and forth to the cameras with the director's instructions and more film, an incredibly lengthly post production phase, each band member wanting creative input into the process, all these technical mountains they had to climb back then. Definitely a great DVD to have though, the production quality is very good for back then.
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post #70 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 09:32 AM
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I used to like this band called AC/DC, who was on radio alot in late 70s early 80s. I liked them cause they were a bit whacky, not real serious music, but lots of raw honest guitar. Once I saw them in concert, and their guitarist was a complete trip He was like in an epelectic fit the whole time, very physical guitarist with a hillarious style and dressed like an English school boy.

Anyways, i found a DVD of a 2001 concert of theirs in Germany
for 12 bucks, so i picked it up, and WOW what a show

Malcolm Young just goes nuts the whole show with his heavy metal-speed-blues style rocks. He kicks it into high gear the whole show, then does this incredible guitar show near the end, I mean this guy must be 50, and he still does all the backward running and wierd guitar moves like when he was 20.

And its classic hard rock, the whole stage is lined with marshall amps, huge Pyrotechnics, huge video walls, HUGE inflatible props, On "Hells Bells" the singer plays the bell by jumping on the bell-ringer on a 20 foot tall bell that hangs over th arena. Yes corny, but these guys take their show serious, they could have cut alot of corners, and didnt.

The stage has a huge 50 yard runway out into the middle of this sports arena, with like 60000 fans going nuts, the band and show centers around this guitarist that, like I say, is throwing a complete speed guitar fit onstage the whole time.

Anyways its called "Stiff Upper Lip" if you ever see it, and are even casually amused by this style of music.

Video Production is very good, 21 cameramen listed on credits, and it shows! Wide Screen Anamorphic, great production values (though I am not incredibly picky).

Tons of different camera angles, high tech cameras booms zooming around in the air, They even have a cameraman in the nosebleed seats.

It is so much like the shows I saw as a teenager, only better because I can control the audio.

Audio production is first rate as well, no cutting corners on this nutzo show!the audio catches the feeling and sound of rows of Marshal amps, neither adding nor removing any of that wonderful distortion. Shoot to Thrill they play early in the show; basically they play all their hits, and some non-hits as well. "Whole Lotta Rosie" is hilarious, about the joys of big women, theres a huge inflatable floating female behind them haha. A good bit of Highway To Hell LP, a good sample of their early stuff, a huge dose of the "Back In Black" LP ....
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post #71 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 08:05 PM
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nice sound and video quality

Whoa...."nice video quality"? Excellent sound quality but very poor image. Looks extra soft, almost blurry and out of focus. I tried the DVD again after my set was calibrated and altho passable, I would not even think to show off my set with this DVD.


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post #72 of 9003 Old 09-01-2003, 08:28 PM
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Originally posted by Yosh70
Whoa...."nice video quality"? Excellent sound quality but very poor image. Looks extra soft, almost blurry and out of focus. I tried the DVD again after my set was calibrated and altho passable, I would not even think to show off my set with this DVD.

Yep its not stunning, its only "nice". . I really look at the concert as a whole, after all its a live event... and if its an older show, like an 80s concert, then im delighted if the sound and video is any good at all.

Even a 90s concert will not match the A/Vquality of a 00s concert, in most cases...

If you want to see stunning video quality, check out the Dixie Chicks... it must be a high definition video source .... although if you want to get real critical, even on this concert there an occasional shot that isn't as crisp as others.
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post #73 of 9003 Old 09-02-2003, 12:37 PM
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I've noticed almost anything from Image Entertainment is w/excellent video/audio quality....Heart's and Peter Framptons DVD concert's are among the best IMHO.


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post #74 of 9003 Old 09-02-2003, 08:31 PM
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My Favorite 16x9 enhanced concert disks with mostly excellent picture and sound are:

The Cure Triolgy
Yes Symphonic Live
Roger Waters In the Flesh
Roxy Music at the Apollo
Underworld Live Everything Everything
James Getting away with it live
New Order 511

My favorite 4x3 (some letterboxed) but excellent sounding disk are:

Pat Metheney Imaginary Day
7 Worlds Collide (tim Finn, Eddie Vedder, Jonny Marr)
Led Zeppelin
Jethro Tull
Big Country (two disks in one keepcase)
Warped Tour (16x9 but soft)
Ben Folds Five (w54th session)

A couple of disks I keep playing even tho the sound
and picture isn't that great but the performances
are:

Oingo Boing Farewell
Joe Jackson in Tokyo
Def Leppard Historia in the round

good luck,
j

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post #75 of 9003 Old 09-02-2003, 09:16 PM
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Good List, JaSee. I'd add The Who: Live at the Royal Albert Hall. Great sound and PQ- and great concert!

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post #76 of 9003 Old 09-02-2003, 10:55 PM
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I would describe The Chieftans as an Irish/Bluegrass/Country orchestra. They have been around for probably 40 years, and continues to fill theaters with superb interweaving of harps, fiddles, banjos, flutes,recorders, guitars, violins, pianos, and several instruments that I just cant remember what they are called.

At any given time, there are, like 10 players on the stage, usually with all different instruments.

This 2003 performance is done in beautiful historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, and they have probably 20 famous guests from the Country, Irish and Bluegrass world: Emmy Lou Harris, John Hyatt, Ricky Skaggs, Patty Griffin, the list goes on ...

The audio and video quality is modern and outstanding, with great miking of the instruments, and it is beautifully directed. It says it is NTSC format, but i found it looks beautiful if you play it like its anomorphic widescreen ...

I am not a huge fan of this kind of music, but this is well worth adding to your collection, if for no other reason, as being able to listen to masters of these somewhat obscure instruments do their craft, live. The atmosphere, crowd, and good vibes these honest musical folks give off, is excellent...

There are short little interviews between most of the songs, which are interesting the first time you watch it, and then easy to skip ... the concert itself is 120 minutes long...

Also theres some serious singing going on here, from beautiful female country singing, to irish ballads, to interesting cowboy types belting out songs while going nuts on some odd stringed instrument whose name escapes you, haha...

If you look at "California Livingroom" I have a picture with this performance on the screen... yes that is an AC/DC dvd on the coffee table, haha
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post #77 of 9003 Old 09-04-2003, 08:22 AM
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...why all Concert DVD's I own and or have played don't seem to be play in progressive scan? The audio is wonderfull but the video is 480i. Almost every "normal movie" plays progressive scan perfectly but for some reason just the concert DVD's don't

BTW I have a JVC XY-F80 and now a Pioneer 563-A and both seem to have the same issue. The DVD's I've tried include Eagles Hell Freezes over, Hole in the World, Sting, James Taylor, and Eric Clapton among others.

Wus-up with that?!

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post #78 of 9003 Old 09-04-2003, 11:51 AM
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That's a fairly reliable indication that the source material is video and not film. Interlaced video signals have every frame different from the adjacent ones. Film source material uses the 3-2 pulldowm method to display 24 frames per second as 60 fields per second.

Both of your DVD players apparently look at the frame flag bit settings to convert to progressive scan, and are confused by video source material. You should include good deinterlacing of video material in the selection criteria for your next DVD player.

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post #79 of 9003 Old 09-04-2003, 11:53 AM
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Quote:


Originally posted by Gary McCoy
That's a fairly reliable indication that the source material is video and not film. Interlaced video signals have every frame different from the adjacent ones. Film source material uses the 3-2 pulldowm method to display 24 frames per second as 60 fields per second.

Both of your DVD players apparently look at the frame flag bit settings to convert to progressive scan, and are confused by video source material. You should include good deinterlacing of video material in the selection criteria for your next DVD player.

Mmmm, That could be it!
Thanks for the advice.

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post #80 of 9003 Old 09-04-2003, 12:42 PM
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JohnR_IN_LA

if only Bon Scott was still around today...

I'll have to go find the "stiff upper lip" DVD and let er rip... it's TNT

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post #81 of 9003 Old 09-04-2003, 07:31 PM
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Ya I heard AC/DC has another pretty good DVD out there somewhere too, but I can confirm "Stiff Upper Lip" is a great single arena show for Late 70s hard rockers ....

.... And I think the single show concert DVDs are the best ( I include the ones that are filmed over 2/3 nights at one location, and then combined, to look like a single show).

I recently bought several new concert DVDs: Jethro Tull Living in the Past, Heart live in Seatle , Simon And Garfunkle in Central Park 1999, and The Wall Live in Berlin. So far they all are appear to be good quality, I will probably review them here

Concert DVDs are the single best thing about Home Theater..
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post #82 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 05:40 AM
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Just bought and watched the Alison Kraus + Union Station Live DVD and it is excellent! It has great picture and even better sound. An excellent reference disc.
Craig

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post #83 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 06:04 AM
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Regarding the Alison Kraus DVD, How would you characterize the music? I like a variety of music from AC/DC to Diana Krall but I've never being a big fan of country. Is this the type of "twang" you typically find in country? In other words, If I like well played instruments and sweet angelic voices, will I like this DVD? Of course I also like heart pounding music with energy and soul. So if this DVD accomplishes any of this there is a good chance I will like it. I've heard nothing but good things about the audio quality and spectacular video in this DVD but if the music is not to my liking then I will skip this purchase.
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post #84 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 07:55 AM
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romanr:
Bluegrass and country aren't the same thing at all. You will like Alison Kraus, especially this CD, especially if you have SACD playback capability and buy the SACD.

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post #85 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 10:07 AM
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romanr,

As mnilan stated, bluegrass and country are different, especially in todays era. Fifty plus years ago country and blue grass had a more similar sound, but country has turned more "electric" while I think the over-all music and sound of blue grass has remained the same.
I think the Alison Kraus DVD really offers up a wide array of low, mid-range and high sounds.
It definitely will test the flexibilities of your audio system.
You said you enjoyed hearing singers with exquisite voices... well Alison has one of the best in my opinion.
The video on this DVD is also superb as well.

Craig

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post #86 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 10:17 AM
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If you like Alison Kraus and that type of music, the Down from the Mountain concert is great. I enjoy it more than her tour concert. It's features some of the music from O'Brother and features an assortment of artists and music. I've watched it many times and still feel like I should applaud after some of the performances.

Maybe it's just me and my perculiar tastes.

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post #87 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 11:06 AM
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Art,

Thanks for the recommendation, I will have to check it out.
Actually, before this concert DVD I never followed bluegrass much. Of the two, (country/bluegrass) country has always been more appealing to me. I guess this DVD has opened my eyes to a new sound.
Craig

Domino's donÂt fall all at once, they fall one at a time...
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post #88 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 10:18 PM
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Quote:


Originally posted by FredProgGH
I was pleasantly surprised by the Tull DVD (Living With The Past). PQ is decent (it's 4x3, shot on video), there's a good blather to music ratio (each song has a little intro but they are all pretty short). There's a wonderful recreation of the original recordings of Wond'ring Aloud and Life's a Long Song done with a string quartet plus a reunion of the original line-up with Mick Abrahams, Clive Bunker and Glenn Cornick for two songs which rocks. The current line-up is great and they do a good selection of material including the best version (read: faithful to the original) of Thick As A Brick since they originally played it in 1972. Ian's voice has come back a bit and his flute playing is better than ever (he's been working to compensate for the deteriorating pipes!) Highly recommended if you're a fan.

The switching between nightime daytime performances was a huge directorial mistake, IMHO. People want to think they are watching a contiguous concert. The director cuts too fast and pastes between shows blatantly, i donno... he finally calms down about half way through the show, and I was able to start enjoying the concert, but WTF?

The sound and Picture quality was fine...still a worthwhile purchase if you like Tull, which I DO
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post #89 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 10:41 PM
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Originally posted by JohnR_IN_LA
The switching between nightime daytime performances was a huge directorial mistake, IMHO. People want to think they are watching a contiguous concert. The director cuts too fast and pastes between shows blatantly, i donno... he finally calms down about half way through the show, and I was able to start enjoying the concert, but WTF?


Yeah, this has become common practice but it's really annoying.

Don't taze me, bro!!
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post #90 of 9003 Old 11-08-2003, 10:44 PM
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Sound: 4 out of 5
Video : 4 out of 5
Performance: 5 out of 5
What I didn't like: He substituted a bit of the dance/theater stageshow for more of a party atmosphere with superstar guests.
What I did like: The best quality concert I have seen of this one-of-a-kind performer.

Prince is one incredible performing musician, he has that rare combination of songwriting, stage performance, singing, dancing, and mastery of all the major musical instruments... This guy can perform doublesplits while wailing on a guitar, and dance while singing while playing the crowd. His "Sign O' the Times" concert DVD would be a seminal recording of his performance talents, were the audio quality not so AWFUL. So I bought this DVD of him playing a New Years party at Paisley Park Studios, with a full crowd.

He has lots of guest performers like Lenny Kravitz and George Clinton, but gives up a bit on the choreographed stageshow that is the hallmark of his live shows. THere is still a ton of dancing and skits going on, where the band basically acts out the song.

Hes also a bit older in this show, and perhaps isnt doing the outrageously good dancing that he was certainly capable of just a few years ago. However he is still probably better than most broadway dancers ...

In exchange, he relaxes and rips up the guitar fretboard, and plays jazz and soul and rock with various guests throughout the night.. he plays drums and piano and other instruments here and there... what a show!

As you can see, i am somewhat biased, and would probably give a high rating to any decent tape of this underrated superstar. He is that good.

Oh he also rails against the music industry in the "News" notes on this DVD, he exposes how the RIAA studios are robbing artists of their rights to the music they create.
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