Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|David Bowie - A Reality Tour|
Actors: David Bowie, Gail Ann Dorsey, Earl Slick, Mike Garson, Sterling Campbell
Director: Marcus Viner
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
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Nice souvenir, but unbearably "artsy"
Michael Thomas Roe | Atlanta | 11/03/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was one of the many who saw the "Reality" tour and was mightily impressed. I had never seen Bowie so close up, nor so spirited and "alive". So it's a pleasure to have the "magic" captured on this DVD. It serves as a nice souvenir and is more than reasonably priced.
So what's wrong with it? Well, it's unbearably "artsy". Every MTV-inspired cliché is in full swing. Jump cuts, freeze frames, fades to black, fades to white, colorizations, negative images, upside down images, crazy camera angles. You name it. And I can't believe that this is even an issue, but there is an amazing lack of sustained close ups and images of Bowie, the man himself. One almost thinks that the director or editor had some kind of beef with Bowie. When it comes time for Bowie to hit home with one of his lyrical and poignant lines, say from "Loving the Alien" or "Fantastic Voyage", the image is of a keyboardist's hand or a smiling audience member, or bass player Gail Ann Dorsey, on whom the director or editor seem to have some kind of fixation. It's all very curious.
There is more expression in Bowie's eyes, posture and hand gestures than any jump cut, freeze frame or artsy device "to keep things interesting". What a pity. This is clearly a missed opportunity.
Martin A Hogan | San Francisco, CA. (Hercules) | 10/20/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Some of Bowie's DVD concerts are good and some are great. This is one of the great ones. Remixed into 5.1 Surround Sound, the audio is amazingly crisp and clear. The light show is blinding in some cases (as was the actual show in person) and the director/editors use this to their advantage in splicing scenes. Some of the special effects (freeze-frame, reverse imaging, blurs, etc.) can get tedious, but it doesn't hurt the overall feel of the concert. Each band member gets plenty of close-ups and the backing vocals are near perfect. After nearly two years on the road, Bowie has connected to his audience like never before, losing any pretension. He's there to have a good time.
With nearly 60 songs used throughout the tour, it's tough to settle on which 30 Bowie decided to use, but the variety is great. "Quicksand" and "Let's Dance" were, unfortunately, not used, but some of the stand-out cuts were the incredible audience sing-along, "All The Young Dudes", the hard, fast romping of, "Hang On To Yourself" and "Under Pressure" where bassist Gail Ann Dorsey seems to channel Freddie Mercury's voice. It's eerie and wonderful! The box itself is disappointing, in that it is thin cardboard and the insert gives little information about the tour. I would have liked to know the concert song lists and the cities played. If that's all I can find wrong with this set, I'd say Bowie delivered a prized concert DVD. Did I mention its incredibly low priced?
David Bowie Keeps getting Better!
K. Morrison | Brooklyn, NY USA | 09/30/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Some of the best concerts ever-these Dublin shows! A band that cannot be matched-Garson, Dorsey, Cambell, Slick, Leonard, Russell! Anyone who likes music and missed this tour missed something really special. Nothing nostolgic. Sure a lot of old classic, but fresh as the day they were relased. Nice oddities like "Sister Midnight" "The Motel", a stripeed down "Loving the Alien" Plus sweet gems as "Five Years", "The Man Who Sold The World", "Life on Mars" and showcased newer songs "New Killer Star", "Heathan", "Hallo Spaceboy", "Slip Away", and of coasre radio hits "heores", "Ziggy Stardust", "Changes", "Under Pressue" (terrific duet with Gail), "Ashes to Ashes". But The real prize is the song "Bring Me the Disco King" has Davd Bowie at his Absolute Best--A must for any one mildly interested! keep up the good work David!"
A Stroke of Genius
Richard A. Siler | Chamblee, GA United States | 11/28/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was a tour of surprises, and they're all captured here on this terrific DVD.
Okay, first the obligatory: Bowie looks and sounds terrific. The band is fantastic. The stage set is pretty cool.
But the real star of this show is the song list. This is Bowie celebrating and revelling in an impressive and important career.
There are equally as many surprising ommisions as their are inclusions. For instance, there's no "Let's Dance", "Jean Genie", "Suffragette City", etc. But the surprises we DO get include "Be My Wife", a haunting version of "The Motel", a gripping acoustic rendition of "Loving the Alien", and a superb version of the Bowie/Pop classic "Sister Midnight".
The show opens with the new arrangment of "Rebel Rebel", followed quickly by "New Killer Star" and the smokin' "Reality", definitely one of the highlights of the show. Other highlights include the modern Bowie masterpiece "Sunday" with Earl Slick's wonderful but far-too-short guitar solo, a rousing "Man Who Sold the World", the audience sing-along of "Life on Mars?", the very clever pairing of "Never Get Old" with "Changes", and of course Gail Ann Dorsey singing and playing the hell out of "Under Pressure." We're also treated to concert staples like "Fame", "I'm Afraid of Americans", and "Hallo Spaceboy".
The biggest and best highlight for me, though, comes at the end: the concert draws to a close with "Heroes", which starts out very quiet and minimal, and then slowly builds throughout the song, all gearing up to a powerful, inspiring, and yes, 'heroic' ending. Its an amazing arrangement of an amazing song, and could last a couple minutes longer in my opinion, but is unfortunately truncated a bit.
After a short break, the band retakes the stage for an incredible 6-song encore, divided evenly into 2 3-song sets. The first set is comprised of three of his recent moodier, more atmospheric pieces. First is the wonderful "Bring Me the Disco King", one of the true highlights of the REALITY album, and featuring the brilliant Mike Garson on piano. This is followed by "Slip Away" (I must be the only Bowie fan that doesn't like that song!) and a terrific reading of "Heathen". The band then kicks open the old-school throttle for "Five Years", "Hang on to Yourself" and the king-daddy of all Bowie tunes, "Ziggy Stardust."
As I was unable to attend Bowie's show here in Atlanta, I am grateful for this DVD, and not disappointed in it in the slightest. The songs are terrific, the performances spot-on, the energy level of the audience is extremely high, and the song-list is nigh-perfect.
If you already own the BEST OF BOWIE DVD, this makes a perfect complement to that. An incredibly enjoyable show."