Search - Ani DiFranco: Live at Babeville on DVD

Ani DiFranco: Live at Babeville
Ani DiFranco Live at Babeville
Actor: Ani DiFranco
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
NR     2008     1hr 30min

On September 11 and 12, 2007, singer/songwriter/guitarist Ani DiFranco played two sold-out shows before a hometown audience in Buffalo, New York. What made those nights so special wasn't just the music--because that's alwa...  more »


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Movie Details

Actor: Ani DiFranco
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
Sub-Genres: Pop, Rock & Roll
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 04/01/2008
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 1hr 30min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

High energy concert with full band, new arrangements of old
M. Senn | Miami, FL | 04/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Ani DiFranco returns with a new concert DVD filmed during her inaugural performances at Babeville, a historic church in Buffalo that has been painstakingly restored by DiFranco, and that serves as a performing arts center and headquarters for her own indie record label.

Ani appears energetic, engaged with the audience and playful throughout this performance (unlike Trust, her prior concert DVD, in which some reviewers thought she seemed "strangely distant"). Babeville features Ani's current touring band consisting of Todd Sickafoose (acoustic bass), Allison Miller (drums), and Mike Dillon (vibes/percussion). All three are accomplished musicians in their own right. After a few years of Ani touring drummer-less, Miller is a welcome addition. Her performance is tight and responsive, and she seemed to genuinely enjoy playing with Ani and the band. Sickafoose, Ani's touring and recording partner for more than 4 years, seemed oddly stoic for much of the concert. But in spite of his somewhat serious demeanour, his performance was also on point. Dillon is the most intense vibraphonist I've ever seen.

The song selection on the Babeville DVD runs the gamut from the mid-90's to current unreleased material. While many Ani fans will quibble with the songs chosen since we all have our favorites, I think the selection is comprehensive and excellent. The songs should engage both casual and diehard DiFranco fans. Only 3 songs (Gravel, LPC and Swim) overlap with Trust, and even these three sound very different when given the full band treatment in Babeville. Included are 2 versions of Shy (one solo and one with the band); I would have preferred a solo version of a different song, such as 2 Lil Girls, instead.

Highlights from the Babeville DVD include Not A Pretty Girl (which she rarely performs live and boasts a new arrangement), In The Way (new arrangement), Fuel (with funky vibes and bongos), Alla This (new unreleased song) and Sunday Morning.

My only complaint with this DVD is that the sound mix doesn't sound quite right. To my ears, Ani's guitar doesn't sound loud enough, and the vibes were overpowering at times. This is especially evident in Ani's solo rendition of Shy, in which her guitarwork usually knocks my socks off, but sounded strangely muted on DVD. I've heard this quartet play live twice in the past month, and their live sound was more balanced.

Finally, the Amazon product description doesn't include a tracklist, so here it is:

01 - napoleon
02 - present/infant
03 - swim
04 - not a pretty girl
05 - fuel
06 - independence day
07 - paradigm
08 - marrow
09 - sunday morning
10 - unrequited (solo)
11 - shy (solo)
12 - you had time
13 - alla this
14 - in the way
15 - gravel
16 - little plastic castle
17 - overlap
18 - hypnotized

BONUS FEATURES (band sound check)
19 - 78% h20
20 - shy
21 - 32 flavors"
Listen to Stereo PCM not DD 5.1
P. Psutka | 04/29/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"If you like Ani DiFranco, you should like this DVD.

Regarding the sound quality, I much prefer the Stereo PCM 2.0 mix. One shouldn't always assume a 5.1 mix (Dolby Digital or DTS) will be better than the stereo mix. The DD 5.1 mix for this release makes it sound like Ani was playing in a big empty hall... very hollow sounding, with too much audience noise and echo in the surrounds.

The stereo mix is completely different without the above complaints, and Ani's guitar is mixed louder. To hear it out of my 5.1 speaker system, I often choose the Dolby Pro Logic II Music mode - as this sounds quite good.

Thankfully, the video aspect ratio is widescreen anamporphic, not 1.33:1 as stated by Amazon.
A great video
C. Taylor | El Paso, TX | 03/04/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a great DVD for any Ani Difranco fan. I loved seeing Babeville, the baby, and of course Ani's performance. Most of the old, favorite songs were rearranged on the DVD and I loved that she had revisited them. I thoroughly enjoyed the DVD."
Not just another artist
Andreas Löfström | sweden | 09/17/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Ani diFranco takes music a step forward.Excellent guitarist. Lysrics that makes you think,react and laugh. Surrounded with superb musciscians. Footage could be more eh..advanced."