Electric Light Orchestra took rock in a new direction, combining lush orchestrations with a pop sensibility, rapidly scoring 17 Top 40 hits. After a lengthy absence from U.S. stages, ELO, headed by Jeff Lynne, returns in t... more »his much-anticipated performance kicking off the new "Zoom" album at CBS Television City in Los Angeles with all of the lavish spectacle the band is famous for in this state-of-the-art concert. Songs: Do Ya, Evil Woman, Showdown, Strange Magic, Livin' Thing, Alright, Lonesome Lullaby, Telephone Line, Turn To Stone, Just For Love, Easy Money, Mr. Blue Sky, Ma-Ma-Ma Belle, One Summer Dream, Tightrope, State Of Mind, Can't Get It Out Of My Head, Moment In Paradise, 10538 Overture, Ordinary Dream, Shine A Little Love, Don't Bring Me Down, Roll Over Beethoven. Interview with Jeff Lynne (9 min.); Fan Club segment (2 min.)« less
Keith Monse | Hackettstown, NJ United States | 11/19/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In what can only be described as an amazing compensation gift for having their tour cancelled, ELO's DVD literally pulls all the right strings. Being a lifelong fan of ELO after first seeing them on The Midnight Special belting out "In the Hall of the Mountain King", I have followed them religiously and was lucky enough to see them live on 3 separate tours. I even bit the bullet and saw ELO 2 a couple of years ago. I have clung to the hope for the last 9 or 10 years that Jeff Lynne would put out some of his own music for a change and my dream was realized earlier this year with the release of the wonderful Zoom. Although the record was horribly marketed as well as the subsequent ill-fated tour, my enthusiasm for the new music was not abated. In what can be considered a gift from the rock gods, this DVD will surely be a prized possession for years to come. The great surprise of this DVD is that Jeff Lynne has only improved upon his immense talent with the passing of time. Not only does he look like he still in a 1970's timewarp with his trademark fro, goatee and shades, his voice and musicianship have never been better. His singing is unparalleled and he hits every note flawlessly. He even displays some real guitar chops on hits like Ma Ma Belle and Roll Over Beethoven. His singing on Moment in Paradise, Can't Get it Out of My Head, Telephone Line and the surprising addition of One Summer Dream literally left me teary-eyed and speechless. The new band's playing is superlative and in my opinion, come the closest to duplicating ELO's studio sound I have ever heard from any incarnation of the band. There's a generous serving of hits scattered throughout the set and a bunch of new songs from Zoom. My only complaint, would have been to jettison a few of the weak songs like Easy Money and State of Mind from Zoom and to have inserted a few other hits. I know, they didn't perform Fire on High or Getting to the Point but the addition of those 2 favorite songs of mine would have really put it over the top for me. After getting my big screen TV and home theater system last year, I have become quite enamored at collecting rock concert DVDs like Talking Heads "Stop Making Sense" and The Moody Blues "Hall of Fame". But, I always longed for a state of the art ELO DVD to complete the set. The Live at Wembley disc just doesn't cut it because of the antiquated recording technology used then which sounds so hollow compared to today's digital quality. To me this DVD is important because it captures Lynne at his zenith and I will always have this moment captured in time forever to watch while I become a decrepit old man. This is truly a great show and I hope Lynne continues to record and perhaps launch a more modest and carefully marketed tour in the near future."
A Wonderfully Understated Surprise
Monsieur le B | Provence, France | 11/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I bought the Zoom CD, I was initially a bit disappointed. It was clearly a Jeff Lynne solo album rather than an ELO extravaganza, although he still hadn't lost the knack of writing a great melody. This CD has since grown on me and I now love it. "Ordinary Dream" must be just about the best song he's ever written.In the light of all this, I bought the Zoom DVD with some hesitation. I needn't have worried. Recorded in front of a live audience at Television City in LA, Lynne's adopted home, it is a wonderfully understated surprise. It is a magnificently laid back event for which Lynne has surrounded himself with true professional musicians, including a couple of cellos and not forgetting the rather attractive, almost Stevie Nicks like Rosie Vela on harmonies. Only Richard Tandy on keyboards survives the original band, looking as though he's turned up from his day job in the City to play with his mate.The thing that strikes me the most is the power and perfect pitch of Lynne's voice. I did wonder how this would carry live, having been used to hearing it blended in with echo and special sound effects in the glossy productions of his heyday in the lates 70's. However, he really does have a great voice and it does make me think whether he has fully exploited this asset in the past. He has in fact got the potential to be a great blues singer.It's hard to pinpoint why I find this concert so satisfying. It is all quite static. The music is delivered through an almost session music medium in a relatively intimate venue. Some of the special effects of the originals are sacrificed in this environment. I suppose as would describe it as the "Jeff Lynne Band plays ELO". I think this is why it works. It's all about the the music and the voice, not the production, and it is clearer than ever, that this man's melodies stand up in their own right. In fact they benefit from being more exposed in this way. There isn't a weak one here, old or new, and at around 90 minutes this is great value.Jeff Lynne enhances the experience with a bit of humour and, still hidden behind permed hair, beard and shades, he doesn't look any different.This is a 5 star experience, a wonderfully understated surprise."
joham | Cave Creek, AZ United States | 03/03/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was an ELO fan from day one... always have been, always will be. OK... so Jeff and Richard Tandy (piano, keyboards) are the only original members of ELO to be found. I would defy anyone to distinguish this incarnate from the original ELO sound. Jeff Lynne is a genius and his genius shows through in ZOOM. To one who thinks Jeff has no stage presence, I say some performers are visual, i.e. Cher, Tina Turner, Rod Stewart. Some need only to be heard to be appreciated, i.e. Roy Orbison, Jeff Lynne. When did you ever see Jeff animated and bouncing around on the stage? And to one who thinks the dts production to be poor, both the audio and video on my dvd are very near the quality of the Eagles, "Hell Freezes Over"...which we can all agree is THE standard. If you were never an ELO fan take a pass on this one. The ELO sound just doesn't capture today's audience, which is why the ZOOM tour failed (along with the worst marketing in the history of the world). If you are an ELO fan, this is as good as it will ever get...BUY IT"
An underrated pop craftsman of exquisite skill
joham | 01/12/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I won't go into an overabundance of detail here because I'm sure most of you know about ELO and their history. Jeff Lynne is an extraordinary pop-rock composer who never ceases to amaze me with his transition through so many eras, yet he has a uniquely identifiable sound.The Zoom concert is pristine quality with a more intimate feel than the huge stage shows of the 70's and the broad range of material actually comes across as well in this setting.I do miss the presence of Bev Bevan and especially the harmony vocals of Kelly Groucutt in this latest incarnation. Those guys were so underrated to the sound in my opinion though Jeff could've been fooling us on all those albums.Great sound, excellent tight performances and the music shines above all even if I just can't reconcile a bunch of session musicians and a cocktail waitress playing along with Jeff.Richard Tandy shines as well with some incredible keyboard playing. He is a master. If you don't believe it, go back and listen to the "Time" cd. He is great here too from laying down the spacey textures to some straight-ahead southern rock boogie woogie lines.I completely recommend this DVD especially in light of what most people are passing off as music these days. Jeff Lynne is dedicated to craft and that is rare these days in a pop music genre."
Back In The Day
Tim C. Sanderford | 02/07/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Back in the day (late 70's, early 80's) if you were lucky when you went to a concert, you got to see not only a great musical performance, but a SHOW. Unbelievable, lighting, special effects, along with a tight, sober band playing at the top of their game, made for an experience you never forgot.
NOBODY, and I mean NOBODY could hold a candle to Electric Light Orchestra. The stage show wasn't a prop, but an intergral part of the experience. Nowdays, if you get a band with a strobe and black curtains everyone goes nuts. Record labels say the cost is just too high to put on a show like that anymore. That's why you need this DVD.
The sound is awesome, the camera work is tight, and so is the band. The 24 song set includes all your favorites, and some new material as well. I'm jumping up and down in my living room, and the neighbors think I'm nuts.
Jeff Lynne has only one peer in pop music, and his name is Paul McCartney. This is a great showcase for a great time, and if you even remotely ever liked one ELO song, you'll kick yourself for not owning this.
If you saw the ELO show, and especially if you didn't, you need this video."