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Category:    Home > Reviews > Concert > Rock > Pop > Progressive > British > Documentary > Alternative > The Boomtown Rats Live At Hammersmith Odeon 1978 (Eagle DVD) + Heaven & Hell Live! (Eagle Blu-ray) + Live At Knebworth – Deluxe Edition (1990/Eagle DVD Set) + A Musicares Tribute To Neil Young (2010/S

The Boomtown Rats Live At Hammersmith Odeon 1978 (Eagle DVD) + Heaven & Hell Live! (Eagle Blu-ray) + Live At Knebworth – Deluxe Edition (1990/Eagle DVD Set) + A Musicares Tribute To Neil Young (2010/Shout! Factory DVD) + Ride, Rise, Roar – David Byrne Live (Eagle Blu-ray) + Sheryl Crow – Miles From Memphis: Live At The Pantages Theater (Eagle Blu-ray) + The Story Of Roxy Music - More Than This (Eagle DVD)


Picture: C+/B-/C/C+/B-/B-/C+     Sound: B-/B/B-/B-/B/B+/C+      Extras: C+/C-/C+/C/D/C/C+     Main Programs/Concerts: B-



And now for a mix of newer and older music (usually concert) releases on Blu-ray and DVD, all of which are surprisingly solid and watchable…



The Boomtown Rats Live At Hammersmith Odeon 1978 is the first time we have actually ever covered Bob Geldof’s famous alternative band that has often been overshadowed by his charity work and success as a huge figure on the British Music scene.  Except for a few hit Music Videos, the band is barely known in the U.S., but this concert is pretty impressive and shows the band in top form and why they were such a big deal.  They are really good here and Geldof can really perform, singing, dancing and having fun with 12 tracks including The Rat, Blind Date, (I Never Loved) Eva Braun, Me & Howard Hughes, She’s So Modern, Joey’s On The Street Again and Looking After No. 1.  This was a great band that deserves to have their catalog revived and this is a great DVD to show off.  The 1.33 X 1 analog PAL video has been letterboxed to 1.78 X 1, the stereo sound has been upgraded to a DTS 5.1 mix (Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Stereo mixes are also here, but not as good) and extras include three audio-only bonus tracks from the concert, and two solo Geldof Music Videos from his Sex, Age & Girls album.


Heaven & Hell Live! brings together Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Vinny Appice in another show in which the late Mr. Dio shows he was alive and well to the end in this 2007 performance giving it his all once again.  We get 15 tracks from an HD taping presented here in a 1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image that looks good for its age considering the kind of motion blur we get in such productions, while the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is much better than you might expect with a good, solid soundfield.  Five featurettes and a small illustrated booklet are the only extras.


The 1990 Live At Knebworth – Deluxe Edition concert was a then-biog event that holds up oddly today, but was taped and includes performances by Tears For Fears in great shape, Cliff Richards & The Shadows embarrassing many younger bands, Eric Clapton, Elton John and Paul McCartney in different sets that are good if not my favorite songs, Dire Straits handling things well enough, Status Quo doing a little better than their name and Phil Collins here solo and with Genesis as they were about to break up and as he jumped the shark as a performer.  The band had performed at the same locale back in better days for the circa 1978, which you can read more about at this link:




Shockingly, this new footage has all kinds of motion blur, staircasing, aliasing, some video noise, and other detail issues throughout that shows this needs retransferred.  The DTS 5.1 mix is better than the Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 Dolby Stereo mixes included, but the better you can hear this, the more you can hear issues with the recording.  CD copies, a reproduction concert ticket, a black and gray paper folds with info about the concert and reproduction of the elaborately illustrated original program are the extras.



A Musicares Tribute To Neil Young (2010) is the third release from the charity tribute series we have managed to cover, following Brian Wilson and James Taylor tributes we covered in the same text at this link:




I liked this show, but it does not always have the chemistry and power of those previous tributes for some odd reason, but it is still a solid concert with interesting turns by Norah Jones (Tell Me Why), Josh Groban (Harvest Moon), Ben Harper (Ohio), Wilco (Broken Arrow), James Taylor (Heart Of Gold), Jason Mraz & Shawn Colvin (Lotta Love, the great hit he penned for Nicolette Larson), Elton John, Leon Russell, Neko Case and Sheryl Crow sing Helpless and Crosby, Stills & Nash sing Human Highway.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is a little softer than expected, but I would expect it to look at least a little better on the Blu-ray issued as the same time as this DVD, but we did not have that edition to compare to as of this posting.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 mix is lossy and might also be better on Blu-ray, but is nicely recorded just the same.  The only extra is an informative paper pullout and two bonus tracks: Ozomatli (Mr. Soul) and Everest (Revolution Blues).  For more Neil Young, try this link:





In speaking of Sheryl Crow, Miles From Memphis: Live At the Pantages Theater turns out to be more impressive than I expected.  Fan or not, you will be surprised how good a concert she gives from the great Los Angeles movie palace.  She sings all of her hits with great energy and as well as their hit recorded versions, has other non-hit material to offer and get son such a role that she pulls off a great cover performance of I Want You Back, the Jackson 5 classic.


If that was not enough, the 1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image looks pretty good for an HD production of this time despite the motion blur and some softness here and there, while the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is shockingly terrific with an outstanding soundfield, fidelity, smoothness in recording and consistency I wish more concert Blu-rays had.  The Dolby Digital 5.1 and PCM 2.0 Stereo mixes are not bad, but no match for the DTS-MA.  Too bad we did not see her join Fleetwood Mac after all.  Extras include a behind the scenes featurette and illustrates booklet about the concert.


In a first for the site, we just covered Ride, Rise, Roar – David Byrne Live on DVD, but it was a PAL analog video import and released just ahead of Eagle Vision’s new Blu-ray edition.  Here is what I had to say about it as a part of another recent multi-release music review:





The 1080i 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image may have some of the motion blur of the PAL DVD from Umbrella in Australia, but it is much less here and the color is much nicer, with better range and a more solid presentation (when the image does not witch to fake black & white) that surprises me that the PAL DVD was as blurry as it was.  Even better is the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix which is far better than the Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo only track on the PAL DVD that is included on this Blu-ray, along with a PCM 2.0 Stereo mix that is not bad and a little warmer and richer than the Dolby mix.  Only see this one on Blu-ray.  There are no extras on this edition either.


In speaking of Brian Eno, that review includes the remarkable Man Who Fell To Earth documentary and now we have more of Eno and Roxy Music with The Story Of Roxy Music - More Than This, a much shorter, broader documentary on the band (strictly so) that only lasts about 53 minutes, but sports interviews with Nile Rodgers and some more ideas and input about their history.  It is a welcome addition and the anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is a little soft, but that is to be expected considering the older analog PAL and NTSC video edited in.  Three bonus tracks form a 2006 reunion concert are in DTS, but the main program is Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo.  Additional interview segments are the other extra.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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