More Zep News

Discussion in 'Music' started by Steve Meskell, Mar 20, 2003.

  1. Steve Meskell

    Steve Meskell Second Unit

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    From R2DVD site

    http://www.r2-dvd.org/article.jsp?se...articleId=5320


    Led Zeppelin DVD
    Patrick Cleasby

    You may have caught the news that rapidly circulated the internet a week ago, when the press release concerning the release of the Led Zeppelin live double DVD set and the accompanying triple live CD package was dropped on a (relatively) unsuspecting world.

    I was lucky enough to be invited to spend an hour in the company of Dick Carruthers, who is co-producer/director of the DVD alongside Jimmy Page, at M Productions studio in West London.

    Dick was a voluble and enthusiastic guide to the genesis and philosophy of what must be one of the most highly anticipated music DVD-V releases ever.

    This project has been in the works for the last year, and the result of some very intensive research and restoration is intended as a definitive statement of all that is fit for release, although as Dick is keen to point out, that quality threshold has been set very high.

    While Dick trawled the archives for film and video material, Jimmy Page and Kevin Shirley were assembling corresponding surround mixes from the huge archive of live recordings Page was known to be sitting on. Page is reputedly now a multi-channel convert, which begged the inevitable question "Does that mean he's ready to start the DVD-A of Led Zepp IV now?" Dick pleaded the fifth on that one with a knowing smile...

    Not only is the audio presented in pristine and powerful DTS, Dolby Digital 5.1 and PCM stereo (presumed to be 16 bit - these discs seem too full to allow space for 24 bit), but the level of attention which has been paid to preparing, cleaning, colour grading and restoring the film and video elements is worthy of a feature film remastering project, and a high budget one at that.

    The discs present the material in chronological order as shown below, and just play when started. Escaping to the menu enables you to appreciate some brilliantly subtle and tasteful moving menus, consisting of left over footage from incomplete tracks, and some of Dick's own footage of the tape archives and negatives being cleaned.

    One of the bonuses of selecting out individual concerts, rather than let them play through end to end, is the insertion of some subtle extra transitions as the program returns to the menu, such as the guys getting onto their legendary plane.

    There is also supplementary material, consisting of early European TV appearances on the first disc, and interviews and 1990 vintage promos on the second, including the only decent interview footage of the late John Bonham.

    It's a shame we didn't have a five and a half hour slot, because that is what it would have taken to view everything there is to offer here. Dick took two of us through the concerts in order, explaining different restoration issues as he went.

    The Albert Hall footage is from a two camera 16mm shoot, and in its restored form looks and sounds simply glorious. Page's punchy guitar blams out of the right channel, appropriate to his stage left position, only occasionally circuiting round the room during solos, and Bonzo's thunderous bass drum is thuddingly rendered by the DTS soundtrack, noticeably better in comparison to the Dolby Digital, even to previously non DTS-convert Dick!

    On to Disc Two, and a stunning version of The Immigrant Song for which footage could not be found, and so some Super 8 footage from Australia has been edited promo-style to accompany it.

    Then Madison Square Garden, and I got Dick to hit that audio button to get the DTS again. Black Dog tears out of the speakers and it is immediately apparent that although this 35mm footage is familiar from "The Song Remains The Same", the level of the restoration from negative, and the new edit, coupled with the incredible remixed sound, give a whole new perspective. There is also the fact that Misty Mountain Hop and The Ocean, not in the original film, have been recovered from the reels and reels of unmarked negative.

    As New York changes into Earls Court, film footage changes to video, and we get the acoustic sit down of Going to California, proving that not only does DTS do power better, but it also does delicate mandolin strums in a brilliantly lifelike way.

    Cussedly avoiding the chance to sample Stairway, we get a blast of the crunching riff from Trampled Underfoot, before viewing the version of Rock n' Roll from Knebworth (video again, although complemented by drop-ins of crowd-shot Super 8), and a quick bit of Kashmir before Dick shows us the end credits, which once again consist of snippets unused elsewhere.

    Throughout, modern effects gimmickry is left out and edits to cover film loading and other transitions are kept to an elegant and appropriate-to-the-period minimum. Footage is left in the original 4:3 (somebody tell Queen!), except for the Madison Square Gardens section, which is letterboxed 4:3 at what looks like 1.77:1, for composition reasons, matting the original open gate 35mm.

    All in all a superb looking and sounding package, release details for the UK cannot be confirmed at the moment, but all Led Zeppelin fans should save their pennies and then rush out and buy this in a couple of months. The fact it was done in the UK has also got to mean the R2 PAL version is the one to go for!

    Main Feature Tracklistings:

    Disc 1

    Live at the Royal Albert Hall (1970) 1hr 42 mins
    We're gonna groove
    I can't quit you baby
    Dazed and Confused
    White Summer
    What is and what should never be
    How many more times
    Moby Dick
    Whole Lotta Love
    Communication Breakdown
    C'mon Everybody
    Something Else
    Bring it on home

    Disc 2

    The Immigrant Song
    Madison Square Garden (1973) 23:24 mins Black Dog
    Misty Mountain Hop
    Since I've been loving you
    The Ocean

    Earls Court (1975) 49 mins
    Going to California
    That's the way
    Bron Y Aur stomp
    In my time of dying
    Trampled Underfoot
    Stairway to Heaven

    Live at Knebworth (1979) 51:41 mins
    Rock N Roll
    Nobody's fault but mine
    Sick Again
    Achilles Last Stand
    In the Evening
    Kashmir
    Whole Lotta Love
     
  2. Chris Brunner

    Chris Brunner Second Unit

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    Thank you Steve. It's going to be a wonderful day.

    c
     
  3. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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    Love the track listing - some of my favorite songs. I hope we see this in hi-rez eventually.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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    I wish someone would list all the bonus tracks (ie. European TV performances).
     
  5. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    When's it coming out again? [​IMG]
     
  6. Chris Lockwood

    Chris Lockwood Producer

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    I'd like to see a DVD of the Page/Plant tours from a few years ago.
     
  7. Steve Meskell

    Steve Meskell Second Unit

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  8. Tim Fennell

    Tim Fennell Stunt Coordinator

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  9. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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  10. Larry Geller

    Larry Geller Supporting Actor

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    Keep in mind that the CD will be coming out on DVD-A, so AVOID THE CD!!!
     
  11. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Well unfortunately I like to listen to my Zep in my car, on the go, etc. so it looks like I'll be purchasing all three iterations: DVD, CD and DVD-A. [​IMG]
     
  12. Jim Rykel

    Jim Rykel Agent

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    I haven't read where the CD will be released on DVD-A. Where is that info from?
     
  13. KevinJ

    KevinJ Supporting Actor

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    i read today that page and the producer of the dvd are working on another set of live zep btw
     
  14. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Ran down to Target this morning, and scored both the CD and the DVD.

    Have not played the DVD yet, but have been listening to the the CD on a desk system (OK, its a freakin' Bose Wave Radio! Sue me! It was Free!). Anyway, no comment on the sonics until I listen to it on the He-Man rig downstairs, but I will comment on the music.

    What can I say, its live Zeppelin, in all their power and glory. Yah sure, Page makes the normal number of mistakes (whats new), but the power that these guys projected live is un-matched. John Bonham was a machine, pure and simple. If he was still alive, he would have a part in T3 along side Arnold.

    Pretty good choice of songs too. Not being a boot-leg collector, I had never heard live treatments of Over the Hills and Far Away, What is and What Should Never Be, or Dancing Days. Very, very cool. This set reminds of why I am an old fart, and prefer this to ANYTHING by ANYONE thats been made since they bowed out.

    Mama ain't gonna be happy tonight, cause Dad is taking over the den....and it won't be quite!

    BGL
     
  15. Steve Meskell

    Steve Meskell Second Unit

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    I think my neighbors will be knocking down my door soon...[​IMG]

    Unbelievable DTS sound.........
    Go and get it at circuit city for 30 bucks /DVD+CD great deal!!!!!
     
  16. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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  17. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Please do provide us a link! If this set is any indication, bring em on! Bring em all on!

    Man, gimme an inch and I'll want a mile...
     
  18. KevinJ

    KevinJ Supporting Actor

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    i remember reading it but i can't remember where...sorry
     
  19. Mitty

    Mitty Supporting Actor

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    Interesting that all the press for this lists it as a concurrently released CD and DVD (there's a sticker on the outside of the package of each format saying "DVD/CD also available" and yet, they're not the same thing; the performances are taken from differenet sources, different shows. The 3-disc CD is all material recorded in L.A. There doesn't seem to be any overlapping material.
     
  20. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
    Reviewer

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    Immigrant Song is the only overlapping track. IIRC, the audio on the DVD is from the same performances as the CD, although the video is from a different show.

    There's a brief blurb on the CD where Page mentions that he discovered the tapes for the SoCal shows while researching for the DVD project.

    Regards,
     

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