Trey Anastasio-Trey Anastasio (DVD-Audio) (2002) (NTSC)

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Released 20-Jan-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Booklet
Notes-Musicians
Credits
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 2002
Running Time 58:19
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Programme
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Bryce Goggin
Trey Anastasio
Studio
Distributor

Warner Vision
Starring Trey Anastasio
Case DVD-Audio Jewel
RPI $32.95 Music Trey Anastasio


Video (NTSC) Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s)
English MLP 96/24 5.1
English MLP 96/24 2.0
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 480i (NTSC)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    This is Trey Anastasio's self-titled 'solo' debut album.

    Trey was born Ernest Guiseppe Anastasio III in 1964. He founded an improvisatory rock band called Phish initially consisting of himself as guitarist, songwriter and composer, Mike Gordon on bass, Jon Fishman on drums, and Jeff Holdworth on guitars. Phish lasted until 2000 when the band went into a hiatus. Trey then briefly flirted with a trio called Oysterhead, consisting of Trey along with Primus bassist Les Claypool and former Police drummer Stewart Copeland.

    This album features a very long line of musicians, including a core group called "The Band" consisting of:

    In addition, there are 21 other musicians playing a variety of instruments - enough to form a small orchestra. Tony and Russ hail from an earlier live performance with Trey in 1998 from an ad-hoc band called The Eight Foot Fluorescent Tubes. The other members of the band appear to have been added gradually over 2001 prior to the recording of the album.

    It's hard to classify the music on this album. There are a variety of moods and styles, ranging from experimental improvisation to college rock to complex orchestral overtones to Afro-Cuban funk. Many of the songs are instrumentals. Push On 'Til The Day sounds somewhat brassy, Flock Of Words is a ballad, Drifting sounds like a cross between a brass band and an orchestra. Ray Dawn Balloon ends with the sound of dogs barking, and Last Tube ends by the music literally slowing down to a stop.

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Track Listing

1. Alive Again
2. Cayman Review
3. Push On 'Til The Day
4. Night Speaks To A Woman
5. Flock Of Words
6. Money, Love & Change
7. Drifting
8. At The Gazebo
9. Mr. Completely
10. Ray Dawn Balloon
11. Last Tube
12. Ether Sunday

Transfer Quality

Video

    Like most of the Warner DVD-Audio discs released to date, the video content on this disc is in full frame NTSC. We get one photo still per song that includes the song title and composer credits.

Audio

    Altogether, there are four audio tracks on this disc: English MLP 96/24 5.1 and English MLP 96/24 2.0 on the DVD-Audio section; English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s) and English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s) on the DVD-Video section.

    I'm not sure I really like this mix - it sounds somewhat bass heavy, the vocals are somewhat recessed and "wimpy", and the instrument definition is somewhat blurry and soft. Apparently the album was recorded at Trey's own studio at Vermont called "The Barn" - I'm wondering whether this is a real barn, which could account for the blurred and boomy acoustics. The dynamic range of the recording also seems somewhat compressed - I am not sure whether this was intentional (to create a claustrophobic sound) or over-zealousness on the part of the engineer to create a "boom-box" friendly mix.

    Apart from that, the MLP 2.0 track is well transferred and I got the feeling that I was hearing everything, warts and all. The soundstage is neither flat nor overly deep.

    The multi-channel mix on the MLP 5.1 track clears up some of the blurriness and dramatically expands the soundstage into a very enveloping space. The centre channel and subwoofer appeared to be silent, so this is a "pseudo-quadrophonic" mix. The MLP 5.1 mix is also substantially louder in level than the other tracks (by at least +4dB). There is no down-mix available, but that's fine since a dedicated MLP 2.0 track is available.

    Trey's voice appears to be mixed to all channels, although still imaged towards the front. From this observation, and also the fact that the various instruments are not precisely located to the various speakers, I suspect this recording is not close-miked onto a multi-track recorder (as most pop recordings are these days) but actually recorded "live" using omnidirectional microphones.

    Occasionally instruments such as electric guitars are rear-imaged. Brass seems to come mainly from the front speakers. Otherwise, the imaging seems somewhat diffuse. The end result is not unlike what I imagine a band playing in a barn would sound like - lots of reverb and reflections from hard surfaces and boomy bass.

    I heard more detail in the multi-channel mix simply because the additional speakers gave the instruments more "air to breathe" and a wider soundstage allows better recognition of low level information through spatial positioning.

    Those of you who don't have a DVD-Audio player only get Dolby Digital tracks - no Linear PCM, and no dts. Also, the Dolby Digital 2.0 track sounds quite similar to the MLP 2.0 track, except perhaps even duller, blurrier and lacking some of the "presence" of the MLP 2.0 track.

    The Dolby Digital 5.1 track also sounds like a paler version of the MLP 5.1 track.

    For some reason (and this effect is on all audio tracks) the sound becomes very muffled in Money, Love and Change from 1:39-1:57 and also 2:06-2:23 - I am not sure whether this is intentional or a fault in the mastering (or perhaps an extreme case of watermarking gone horribly wrong?). In any case, the muffling does not sound very pleasant. The corresponding timings on DVD-V on the Dolby Digital audio tracks are around 26:50-27:08 and 27:18-27:35 into the title.

    This is a single sided, dual layered disc. However, I was not able to determine where the layer change is, since the DVD-Video content resides entirely on Layer 1. I suspect the MLP 5.1 track is on Layer 0 and the MLP 2.0 track is on Layer 1.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    The extras are pretty minimal and duplicated across both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video sections of the disc.

Booklet

    This is an eight page colour booklet that includes colour photographs, track listing, and musician/production credits.

Notes-Musicians

    This is a set of three stills listing musician credits.

Credits

    This is a set of four stills listing the album production and DVD Audio authoring team.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This disc appears to be identically featured across all regions.

Summary

    Trey Anastasio is a self-titled solo album containing a mixture of styles from Trey Anastasio and a rather large band and accompanying musicians.

    This disc includes MLP 96/24 5.1 and 2.0 on the DVD Audio portion, plus Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 on the DVD-Video portion. The audio is rather blurry and bass-heavy and the soundstage imaging is somewhat diffuse.

    Extras are minimal.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Christine Tham (read my biography)
Thursday, May 15, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDPanasonic DVD-RP82, using Component output
DisplaySony VPL-VW11HT LCD Projector, ScreenTechnics 16x9 matte white screen (254cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials/Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationDenon AVC-A1SE (upgraded)
SpeakersFront and surrounds: B&W CDM7NT, front centre: B&W CDMCNT, surround backs: B&W DM601S2, subwoofer: B&W ASW2500

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