Archive for the ‘Blu-Ray’ Category
Paul McCartney and Wings, Rockshow (Eagle Rock)
ZZ Top, The Complete Studio Albums 1970-1990 (Warner Bros./Rhino)
So not only are you getting all of ZZ Top’s London/Warner-era albums in one convenient box, but you’re getting a fair amount of them in their original mixes for the first time ever on CD. Win? Win. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
Various Artists, The Complete Motown Singles Volume 12A: 1972 (Hip-O Select/Motown)
Richard Pryor, No Pryor Restraint: Life in Concert (Shout! Factory)
Burt Bacharach, Anyone Who Had a Heart: The Art of the Songwriter (U.K.-only box set) (UMe)
From the U.K. comes a new six-disc anthology of Bacharach’s best works as a writer or performer – easily more comprehensive than the double-disc set U.S. audiences got recently. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
Icehouse, The 12 Inches Volume 1 (Repertoire)
The Beatles’ second feature film, 1965′s Help!, is making its Blu-Ray debut this June.
Reuniting with A Hard Day’s Night director Richard Lester with a bigger budget (for one, they shot in color), Help! finds The Fab Four in yet another set of wacky predicaments – this time, Ringo can’t seem to get a ring unstuck from his finger, and an evil cult want said ring for their own purposes. Silly stuff, for sure – and, at perhaps the most grueling heights of Beatlemania, not as fun a shoot for the band as A Hard Day’s Night – but a captivating chapter in the band’s catalogue.
The accompanying album remains one of the most drastically different in the band’s catalogue on both sides of the Atlantic. In the U.K. (now the standard version of the album, remixed by George Martin for its 1987 CD release), it featured chart-topping singles in “Ticket to Ride” and the title track as well as instant classics “I’ve Just Seen a Face,” “You’re Going to Lose That Girl,” “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away” – all of which featured in the film – and “Yesterday” (a U.S. No. 1 hit). The U.S. version, released on the United Artists label, was a much more standard soundtrack album, featuring some non-Beatles orchestral passages arranged by Ken Thorne.
First officially released on DVD in 2007, this single-disc Blu-Ray ports over all of that two-disc set’s material into a new HD set. Features included are:
- A 5.1 surround sound mix for the film
- The Beatles in Help! – a 30-minute documentary about the making of the film with Richard Lester, the cast and crew, including exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of The Beatles on-set.
- A Missing Scene – a film outtake, featuring Wendy Richard
- The Restoration of Help! – an in-depth look at the restoration process
- Memories of Help! – the cast and crew reminisce
- 1965 Theatrical Trailers – two original U.S. trailers and one original Spanish trailer
- 1965 U.S. Radio Spots (hidden in disc menus)
Help! arrives on Blu-Ray June 24 around the world and a day later in America. Pre-order links will be added as they are available.
A reissue of Magica isn’t all Dio fans have to look forward to this summer on the catalogue front: Eagle Rock is remastering and expanding a 1986 live show from the legendary metal band across multiple formats.
Finding the Sacred Heart: Live in Philly 1986 captures Dio’s full show from Philadelphia’s grand departed arena, The Spectrum, on June 17, 1986. The band’s most recent studio album, Sacred Heart, had been out for almost a year, but this leg of the tour featured the first of many lineup changes, with guitarist Craig Goldy replacing Vivian Campbell. This lineup of Ronnie James Dio, Goldy, bassist Jimmy Bain and drummer Vinny Appice would record 1987′s Dream Evil.
This tour, which featured a monstrous stage show with laser light effects and an animatronic dragon attack, was first chronicled through the videocassette Sacred Heart: The Video in 1986, which featured an edited version of this concert. (That program was released on DVD by Rhino in 2004.) For this release, though, Eagle Rock has remastered the entire show from its original audiovisual elements, reinstating five full songs to the show’s running time and re-sequencing it in the proper order. Some archival bonus material will also be included, including interviews with the late Dio and his new guitarist Goldy.
Finding the Sacred Heart is available on DVD, Blu-Ray and double-disc CD on May 28. Hit the jump to pre-order your copies and check out the track list!
2011 wasn’t a bad year to be a Rush fan, with the legendary Canadian band offering a deluxe edition of 1981’s Moving Pictures and three Sector box sets covering Rush’s entire 1974-1989 Mercury Records tenure. Now, Geddy Lee (bass, keyboard, vocals), Alex Lifeson (guitar) and Neil Peart (drummer) are preparing to close out this year by celebrating 2112 (yes, 2112 in 2012!) in a variety of deluxe formats. Amazon.com has confirmed December 18 as the release date for three editions of the classic 1976 album:
Perhaps the ultimate Rush album, 2112 became Rush’s most successful album to date with a No. 61 berth on the Billboard pop chart. The group’s fourth album, it eventually achieved multi-platinum status. Co-produced by Rush and Terry Brown, the LP blended heavy rock and prog rock into an imaginative, accessible and provocative whole. The side-long, seven-part, 20+-minute title track by Peart (lyrics), Lee and Lifeson (music) featured an overture, a finale, and a conceptual sci-fi thread inspired at least in part by the writing of Ayn Rand. The band’s story of a lone man with a guitar against the backdrop of a society oppressed by a galactic war proved irresistible to listeners. The album’s second side consisted of five more traditional songs. Virtually every aspect of the album influenced the band’s future path, including its artwork; the starman emblem (or “Man in the Star”) logo made repeat appearances on future Rush albums.
What will you find on the upcoming editions? Hit the jump! Read the rest of this entry »
In 2010, Shout! Factory and Frank Sinatra Enterprises (FSE) released an impressive DVD box set collecting 7 discs and over 14 hours’ worth of Frank Sinatra’s television performances from the 1950s through the 1980s. On November 13, one of those discs from The Concert Collection will be available as a standalone DVD following similar releases of other DVDs from the set. Primetime includes three programs from 1968, 1969 and 1977, respectively, in which Sinatra welcomes a bevy of guests.
In 1968’s Francis Albert Sinatra Does His Thing, the legendary entertainer welcomes Diahann Carroll and the 5th Dimension, celebrating the impact of black music on America. Carroll joins Sinatra for a heartfelt medley of spirituals, and Sinatra also takes the stage with Marilyn McCoo, Billy Davis, Jr., Florence LaRue, Ron Townson and Lamonte McLemore for a groovy version of Laura Nyro’s “Sweet Blindness” (“Please don’t tell my mother/I’m a saloon and a moonshine lover!”).
1969’s Sinatra teamed Frank with frequent arranger Don Costa and his orchestra, and features an early performance of “My Way,” with its English lyrics penned for Sinatra by his friend Paul Anka. 1977’s Sinatra and Friends featured a true all-star roster spanning various genres. This time, Sinatra shared the screen with Natalie Cole, Tony Bennett, Loretta Lynn, John Denver and his longtime pally Dean Martin. The entire cast returns for the closing performance of Paul Anka’s “Everybody Ought to Be in Love.”
If you don’t already own The Concert Collection, you can check out Primetime on November 13. Here’s a pre-order link!
After the jump: we meet Macca and head to a famed New York cabaret with Christine Andreas! Read the rest of this entry »
“Paul said ‘Look I’ve got this idea’ and we said ‘great!’ and all he had was this circle and a little dot on the top – that’s where we started,” Ringo Starr recalls in one of the special features included on Apple’s new DVD and Blu-ray of The Beatles’ 1967 BBC television film Magical Mystery Tour. That McCartney-drawn circle, later transformed into a pie chart, is included in the accompanying booklet. It epitomizes the loose, freewheeling nature of this largely improvised musical journey directed by Macca and his bandmates. The new video releases are among the most lavish accorded any Beatles film, eclipsing even the fine Yellow Submarine from earlier this year, with over an hour of bonus material and a film-length Director’s Commentary from Paul McCartney.
The loopy musical travelogue Magical Mystery Tour found the Fab Four joined by a motley crew of performers including Ivor Cutler, Victor Spinetti, Jessie Robins, Nat Jackley, Derek Royle, and the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, not to mention a bus full of fans-turned-extras. The film’s nominal plot follows Ringo and his recently widowed Auntie Jessie (Jessie Robins) on a British tour bus headed for the English countryside. Ringo and Auntie Jesse are joined by tour director Jolly Jimmy Johnson (Derek Royle), hostess Miss Wendy Winters (Mandy Weet), conductor Buster Bloodvessel (Ivor Cutler), and of course, the other Beatles, who portray whimsical wizards alongside pal and road manager Mal Evans. (Remember Where’s Waldo? Watching Magical Mystery Tour, you could play Where’s Mal?) Spinetti, who also appeared in A Hard Day’s Night and Help! with the Fabs, portrays an unintelligible army drill sergeant in one amusing vignette, reprising an off-the-wall character from Joan Littlewood’s stage play Oh, What a Lovely War! (1963).
Of course, the film frequently seems as little more than excuse on which to hang music videos for Beatle songs, long before that term existed. John, Paul and George’s songs all get a turn in the spotlight, with extended sequences for “I Am the Walrus,” “The Fool on the Hill,” and “Blue Jay Way” among the fun. “Fool on the Hill” is quite literal, with Paul actually spinning round and round on a hill, while “I Am the Walrus” memorably has the boys in their most groovy finery, transforming into the Egg Man, the Walrus, etc. There was a method to their madness, as McCartney remembers in his genial commentary: who was the walrus? The Beatles didn’t want to give a definitive answer. “Blue Jay Way,” appropriately, stars George in a swirling, psychedelic haze.
During the ride, passengers on the bus appear and disappear, and scenes and locales shift at the drop of a hat. McCartney warmly recalls the chaotic spirit of fun that characterized the film’s making. He frequently laughs at the absurdity of it all, while fondly remembering the band’s desire to disregard most conventions of filmmaking. Much of Magical Mystery Tour was shot not at a film studio, but at an RAF airfield and hangar! He also reveals some secrets: who knew that the footage seen during group song “Flying” was actually outtake material from Stanley Kubrick’s 1964 Dr. Strangelove, enhanced with color filters? McCartney naturally mentions the anarchic influence of Spike Milligan and the Goons, always a Beatle favorite. When Ringo asks “Where’s the bus?” in a zany laboratory sequence, you might find yourself echoing the question! Ringo has an easy presence onscreen, but the other Fabs acquit themselves well, too, particularly John Lennon as a waiter who wields a shovel in case of any food-related accidents that might occur…
Hit the jump to continue the Tour! Read the rest of this entry »
A Bigger (and Bigger) Bang: Rolling Stones Deliver Limited “Brussels” Boxes and Vinyl “Some Girls” Concert, Release Vintage Documentary [UPDATED WITH TRACK LISTING]
If you feel like you’ve been caught in a crossfire hurricane…you’re not alone.
A rolling stone gathers no moss, and neither do The Rolling Stones. After making headlines throughout 2012 for not celebrating their 50th anniversary with a massive tour, retrospective box set or something of the sort, the World’s Greatest Rock and Roll Band can’t seem to keep out of the headlines lately with a bevy of upcoming projects, including rumored performances in New York and London, two distinct documentaries, another repackaging of 2011′s Live in Texas: On Tour 1978, and three limited edition vinyl box sets of live “official bootleg” The Brussels Affair that makes the phrase “super deluxe edition” seem woefully inadequate.
Crossfire Hurricane is the title of the documentary coming from director Brett Morgen (The Kid Stays in the Picture). With a limited theatrical release planned as well as airings on HBO and the BBC, Crossfire Hurricane promises to trace the Stones’ “nearly mythical journey from outsiders to rock and roll royalty, according to the director. But it’s not the only documentary on the band’s radar. Charlie Is My Darling – Ireland 1965 premieres at the New York Film Festival on September 29, and arrives on DVD and Blu-ray on November 6 in standard editions and…a super deluxe box set!
Charlie is My Darling was the very first documentary to chronicle the Rolling Stones, long before they achieved mythic status. It was filmed on a brief tour of Ireland in the aftermath of breakthrough single “(I Can’t Get No Satisfaction)” hitting No. 1. Though it featured professionally filmed concert performances as well as behind-the-scenes segments of the group on the road, Charlie has only trickled out in brief segments over the years, some not properly synched. Directed by Peter Whitehead (Tonite Let’s All Make Love in London) and produced by the legendary impresario (and the Stones’ manager from 1963 to 1967) Andrew Loog Oldham, the movie includes “candid, off-the-cuff interviews…juxtaposed with revealing, comical scenes of the band goofing on one another as well as unsuspecting outsiders,” according to ABKCO. It “offers an unmatched look inside the day-to-day life of the Stones.”
Released by ABKCO Films, the new Charlie is My Darling adds previously unseen footage by director Mick Gochanour and producer Robin Klein, the Grammy-Award winning team that brought the classic The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus film to the screen in 1996. Following the premiere at the New York Film Festival on September 29 and an encore screening on October 3 at the Walter Reade Theatre, the documentary will be broadcast on television and issued on DVD, BD and a special DVD/BD super deluxe box. The latter will include the film on both DVD and BD, plus two CDs (Live in England 1965 and the film soundtrack) and a vinyl LP. You can pre-order all versions here!
After the jump: the Rolling Stones revisit The Brussels Affair, but it’s not what you might be expecting! Plus: the complete track listing to the Charlie is My Darling box set! Read the rest of this entry »
Though Jim Morrison died more than 41 years ago, the fire of The Doors continues to burn bright. The past year, once christened The Year of the Doors, has brought a number of projects to light, such as the DVDs, CDs and LPs pertaining to the 40th anniversary of the seminal L.A. Woman album, and the campaign from Analogue Productions that will eventually encompass both 45 RPM LP and multichannel SACD reissues of the core catalogue.
On October 23, The Doors’ July 5, 1968 performance at the Hollywood Bowl will receive the deluxe treatment in a variety of formats. Live at the Bowl ’68 will be released by Eagle Rock Entertainment as a Blu-Ray, DVD and digital video, while Rhino will handle the CD, digital audio and double-LP versions. The concert, long a fan favorite, has been restored from the original camera negatives, while the audio has been remixed and mastered from original multi-tracks by engineer Bruce Botnick.
Live at the Bowl ’68 also will include three previously unreleased performances from the concert. “Hello, I Love You,” “The WASP (Texas Radio and the Big Beat)” and “Spanish Caravan” have all finally been restored to the line-up. The DVD, Blu-Ray and digital video each feature a 16×9 high-definition digital transfer with stereo and 5.1 audio soundtracks. In addition, over one hour of bonus material will be included. “Echoes from the Bowl” and “You Had To Be There” look back at the performance, while “Reworking The Doors” explores the concert’s restoration for this release. Three bonus songs have also been unearthed: “Wild Child” from a 1968 episode of The Smothers Brothers Show, “Light My Fire” from The Jonathan Winters Show in December 1967, and a version of Van Morrison’s “Gloria” with specially created visuals. Ray Manzarek, who took the stage that July night with bandmates Jim Morrison, Robby Krieger and John Densmore, has commented of the new release: “You can hear it as if you were at the Hollywood Bowl, on stage with us.”
Doors manager Jeff Jampol, also a producer of the film, stated, “The Doors’ live performances were a shamanistic journey into dark rock and roll psychedelic theater – a swirling mixture of rock ‘n’ roll heat, poetry, danger, drama and unbridled musical virtuosity. Captured at the height of The Doors’ magical powers, in one of the world’s greatest venues, this brand new restoration, edit and mix, corny as it may sound, made me fall in love a hundred times, all over again.” Geoff Kempin, executive producer for Eagle Rock Entertainment, added, “The Doors were one of THE most incredible live bands ever – we wanted to apply the top technology so that everyone can fully appreciate the phenomenon of The Doors captured at their height on July 5, 1968.”
Hit the jump for more, including pre-order links and the track listing! Read the rest of this entry »