Good concert marred by sound glitches and horrible editing
J. Lizzi | Costa Mesa, CA | 09/05/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"There's little doubt that Yngwie Malmsteen is one of the most impressive guitar soloists in the hard rock genre, and his soloing prowess is certainly on display in this live concert DVD, recorded in Brazil in May of 1998. On pure musicianship alone, I'd be inclined to rate this performance a little higher, but the musical aspects of this show were too often overshadowed by bad production work that turned out to be far too often irritating.The good news is that, aside from a decent helping of power rock songs, the viewer (read guitar fan) gets lots of close-ups of Yngwie's finger work, although usually it's either one hand or the other, but not both, for any length of time. At least there are many opportunities to check out his amazing left hand dexterity, which is made easier by the custom scalloped fret board on Yngwie's Stratocaster. In fact, Yngwie's soloing is blindingly fast virtually all the time, and I'm amazed at how often he plays inward of the twelfth fret. As impressive as this may seem to some, I longed for a little more diversity in the soloing; thus, I got bored at times. [Note: I'm way spoiled by Joe Satriani, whom I consider to be the ultimate rock guitar soloist based on his varied finger style and diverse phrasing. You must check out his 2-DVD live performance]. Yngwie also has this habit of slinging the axe around his body, and throwing the guitar up in the air repeatedly at the end of songs. Perhaps he does this a little too often . . .I don't get heartburn over a minor sound glitch here or there, but on several of the songs, virtually the entire audio balance shifted to the center speaker, and I had to toggle my receiver to a "CD Stereo" setting (from 7.1) to resurrect the concert sound. About halfway through, I got tired of doing this, and totally gave up on 7.1. I can't be sure if this is a trait of this disc, or if mine was the odd defective one. Beware.Just as annoying as the 7.1 sound disappearance was the video editing. The overall run time of just under 80 minutes (12 songs) is somewhat unfulfilling, but what really made me feel shortchanged was that the editing makes it painfully obvious that much of Yngwie's performance seemed to be cut out. I mean, here you see him walking off stage, and the next moment he's already started playing again: different lighting, and a hiccup in the audio track and camera angle. This frequent absence of flow between songs (in fact, the track number gets derailed at one point) ruined the concert "feel" of the performance.All things considered, this DVD provides a slightly above average rock `n' roll experience."
Excellent DVD!! An absolute must have!
J. Lizzi | 08/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I must admit, I was a little hesitant to buy this dvd after reading some of the other reviews, but when i finally got my hands on it i was amazed. This dvd captures yngwie's talent as well as the talent among his band members. I am extremely satisfied with the song listing as well as the camera work. I have seen yngwie in concert before and i was blown away by his stage performance. This concert dvd is an excellent addition to any metal fans collection. Please don't listen to the previous reviews that said the dvd has "bad camera angles", "bad sound", etc.. because this is one of the best concert dvd's i have seen next to dream theater's metropolis 2000. Everything about this dvd is fantastic. Buy it today!"
Good, but not great
Funky Kikuchiyo | Fairfax, VT USA | 05/21/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The performance is just that... good, not great. It's Yngwie, so its precise and makes any aspiring guitarist jealous, but in this concert, he seems a little uninspired. Listen to his ORIGINAL Icarus Dream Suite compared to the little bit he does in this, and you'll know what I mean. However, he does play well, and while Mats Leven isn't NEARLY as good as Jeff Scott Soto, he grows on you. And, some of the songs sound really good. Like An Angel and Seventh Sign sound very nice, even when compared to their original recordings. I do wish that he had a rhythm guitarist.... you NEED to be able to hear those chord changes on the really strong songs like Far Beyond The Sun, or else it just sounds like weedly-weedly-wee garbage, and not the great NeoClassical pieces that they are. As for the video recording, it leaves a lot to be desired. It's digital quality, so that helps, but the lighting is terrible. It doesn't help that the stage and everything on it (including Yngwie) is black, with nutty stage lights all over. Plus, the camera angles are awful. They're quite fond of this one position where its right on the neck pickup..... now, while I have nothing against Dimarzio pickups, you can't even see his hands in these shots, so when you really want to observe his technique, you have nothing to look at. The wide shots are terrible, because of the lighting, so you can't really make anything out.As much as this DVD bugs me, I would buy it again, though. It remains enjoyable for any avid Yngwie fan, regardless of how much BETTER it COULD be."
Not well put out
Funky Kikuchiyo | 09/02/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD is not well made. It does not have 5.1 surround sound, no extra material or bio thats usually on DVDS and Yngwies accoustic solo has been cut. I give it 3 stars not on Yngwies performance but on the quality of the DVD."