A thrilling live show, hurt by overactive edits. Fun extras
Winthrop Harrison | Seattle, WA United States | 06/02/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Although a fan of punk and musical outsiders in general, I hadn't really heard Joan Jett until I caught her at a casino (gulp!) in Elko Nevada 2002. I was thrilled, Joan Jett is one of the very few performers that I truly could not take my eyes off. She really does have a look that kills, great showmanship, and inspiring attitude. Ambiguious. I loved trying to figure her out while "comped" ranchers picked up their Stetson hats and left. She threw guitar picks to the few people in the crowd who seemed to get it.This 1998 VH1 show was filmed in Telluride Colorado. The hits are included, along with many other songs I feel are stronger. The recording quality is sometimes a little thin, but good enough. My big complaint for this great show is the camerawork and editing. If a band is playing as hot and intense as this, they are the focus of the night. They are the event. The thrilled audience gets this, but the hyperactive cameramen clearly don't. This DVD has too many cut-aways from Jett and her band, and too many useless shots of nobodies crowd-surfing and shots from the back of the room. Sometimes less is more.The extras? The DVD includes a brief photo album that reminds you how long Jett has been performing. (Those hairstyles connect generations...) Also included: 2 videos - one flawed, one great '80s cheese. The '90s "Real Wild Child" cover shows Joan Jett's excellent skill for pantomime/facial expression, proving she's got half the acting game down pat. The live performance of "Do You Wanna Touch Me" - filmed during a 1985 New Year's Eve for MTV or something even worse, is ridiculous. Jett and her band may be visibly bored, but they appear sane in a room filled of what can best be called "TV Party People". To put it another way, drunk party ghouls with Rob Lowe hair. (Pick a decade, it's the same creepy Rob Lowe hair...) A horrible clip, and it's my favorite point in the disc. It reminds me how much I hated the safe white-bread '80s culture - this clip is something else. Although I never really liked them, thank god Nirvana swept away the tired empty '80s vibe. Joan Jett's work fits better with the '90s vibe and beyond. This DVD shows that."
Do you love rock & roll? Joan Jett does.
Steve F | Atlanta, GA USA | 08/22/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD vastly exceeded my expectations. Video quality is razor sharp (even on a 56" screen) and the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack is outstanding. I'd recommend this one to anyone, but if you have a decent surround sound setup with a good subwoofer this DVD will rock your house down. The sound mix includes tons of thunderous bass. This the gutwrenching, chest pounding sound that you get at a live rock concert. Rest assured, this ain't no trumpet playing band.The music is non-stop and features most of the songs Jett is known for. There are no interviews or interruption of the music, just song after song. It's obvious that Ms. Jett loves performing and I'd say this is the best she's ever sounded. The band is outstanding and the crowd is ready to rock. The editorial interviewer at the top of this page comments that "pop music styles may have passed her by". What he should say is that real rock will live on as long as there are performers like Joan Jett, and it's the pre-fab pop stars who will fade. Well, I've run out of superlatives. If you like rock then I think you'll like this DVD. I'll just state again that video quality is great and the audio is superb (and sounds better the louder you crank it). My next door neighbor better get used to this one."
Mad Dog | TimbuckThree, Tennessee | 01/17/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Having read the glowing customer reviews, I picked up this DVD with high expectations. I'm a tried and true Joan Jett fan and I'm happy I bought this disc, but it is not as good as I expected. The song selection is good and the band plays its collective butt off. The biggest letdown to me is the sound. I know it's difficult to get good live sound in a small hall when the band is playing loud because the room resonance interferes. That happens here, with loads of echo being captured by the mics. On one hand, you can say it's a fairly accurate representation of what it would sound like to have been there but on the other hand, less echo would sound better.So go back and listen to the original vinyl or CDs if you want the best sound. If you want to see how the band cranks these days, check out this DVD. I've seen Joan looking healthier in days past, but age catches up with all of us, a fact I deal with daily. For that reason, the bonus video of "Do You Want To Touch Me" recorded some years ago, is my favorite. The photo album also has some gems - she surely is a beautiful lady.My two sons are 5 and 7 years old and they love this DVD, so maybe my review is flawed. I guess my expectations, based on reviews here, were just too high."
Jason Lindsey | Seattle, WA USA | 10/21/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I think I added and removed this DVD from my wish list THREE TIMES before finally just biting the bullet and ordering it. My trepidation? When I read this was a concert from just a year ago, I didn't want to see some watered down rock show performed without the fire that many 80's artists put out. Not that Joan Jett has done that before, but I've been disappointed with the Blonde Live DVD, and recent others. Like most people, I want to see the artist rockin' it live in their PRIME - when they have the most energy and sass. That said, this DVD exceeded my expections wonderfully! Joan snarles, rocks, swears and sweats as if grunge, boy bands and sugar pop rock never took over the airwaves. The audio mix is loud and heavy and all the classic songs are performed with as though they were released a week ago. And according to the enthusiastic audience, pumping their fists along with each word.... you would think these songs were! My only complaint would be that there is not enough extra stuff on here. I would have loved to have listened to an Audio Commentary by Joan and the band about the songs and maybe watched some behind the scenes stuff. Not a big deal, but those additions would have made this already fun DVD perfect!"