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Category:    Home > Reviews > Concert > Folk > Pop-Easy Listening > Jewel - Live At Humphrey's By The Bay

Jewel – Live At Humphrey’s On The Bay

 

Picture: C+     Sound: B-     Extras: C-     Concert: B-

 

 

No mater how many times I try to take her seriously, there is something about the singer/songwriter Jewel that I just cannot take seriously enough to enjoy her work.  Sometimes, it is because she is provocative without a point.  Other times, it is just the pretension that she somehow knows it all about emotions and love that contradicts the results of her songs.  Like Meat Loaf, this allows the audience to stick anything they feel to her songs like Velcro, but the content is nothing to crow about.

 

Her DVD-Video concert Live At Humphrey’s On The Bay has her coming out to her audience with her dog.  It feels like instant appeal to cuteness, appealing to the emotional side of her audience before she begins her set.  The dog is the brief, instant warm-up act.  Then comes the songs, as follows:

 

Per La Gloria D’Adorarvi

Near You Always

Kiss The Flame

Rosy & Mick

Everything Breaks Sometime

Sometimes It Be That Way

Grey Matter

Break Me

The New Wild West

You Were Meant For Me

Hands

Everybody Needs Someone Sometimes

Who Will Save Your Soul

Standing Still (not listed on the back of the box)

Love Me, Just Leave Me Alone

Do You Want To Play?

Jesus Loves You

 

The final four songs are dubbed bonus tracks, but I say do not do me any favors.  After suffering through more Jewel music than I ever thought I would have to endure in a lifetime, I realized that my thoughts about manipulation are more valid than I originally suspected.  Most of the songs are shallowly guilty of illicitly appealing to the loneliness of the listener in some slyly manipulative ways.  Her commercial success, limited but prominent enough, shows there is sadly a big audience for this and the lack of better singer/songwriters with something to say.  Tori Amos is somewhat guilty of this, but we’ll save that for her later.

 

The full frame 1.33 X 1 image is off of professional analog NTSC videotape, exhibiting the usual color, softness and picture limits we see even these days.  It is passable at best.  The sound is available in Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo with Pro Logic surrounds and two 5.1 mixes, Dolby & DTS.  Usually, the DTS is obviously superior, but in this case, both mixes are nothing great, though the DTS has a sliver of an edge.  Those expecting outstanding sonics can forget it.

 

Extras include a jukebox function which allows you to put up to 13 tracks in any order you wish, which will oddly give you the same sappy, manipulative results as if you listened to them in the original order.  There is also a discography which allows you to click on a cover to see its content, a weblink, a photo gallery with music accompaniment (yes, singing to the lonely again!), and an interview where she shares with us her “authenticness” and the like for 11.5 minutes.  I thought she was well spoken, but still did not buy it or anything else on this DVD.  Only the most serious fans should apply.

 

 

-   Nicholas Sheffo


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