Dio-Evil or Divine (2002)

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Released 4-Dec-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Main Menu Audio & Animation
Interviews-Cast-Ronnie James Dio
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Music Video-Push (Featuring Tenacious D)
Gallery-Photo
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 2002
Running Time 138:57 (Case: 100)
RSDL / Flipper RSDL (72:24) Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Ken Botelho
Studio
Distributor
Spitfire
Warner Vision
Starring Ronnie James Dio
Jimmy Bain
Simon Wright
Doug Aldrich
Scott Warren
Case ?
RPI $34.95 Music None Given


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English dts 5.1 (768Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
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

    Ronnie James Dio is a name that has been synonymous with hard rock and heavy metal for almost thirty years. His catalogue of highly influential material is unparalleled, with tenures as vocalist in such legendary bands as Rainbow and Black Sabbath, as well as his renowned solo career which has ensured him legendary status among many loyal fans and fellow musicians.

    This live concert was recorded at the Roseland Ballroom in New York on December 13th, 2002 and manages to cover most stages of Dio's extensive career. The set opens with the title track from Dio's latest album, Killing The Dragon and features several other new songs scattered throughout the performance, which also includes some classic Black Sabbath and Rainbow material.

    As you would expect, the line-up of musicians on stage is exemplary and their musicianship is second to none. This is in fact the same group that recorded the recent Killing The Dragon album and their prowess on stage matches their studio effort. Among the musicians is former Rainbow bassist Jimmy Bain and guitarist extraordinaire Doug Aldrich, who pulls off some incredible fretwork throughout the gig.

    Evil Or Divine is an excellent live performance that showcases an incredible vocalist and hard rock legend in action.

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Track Listing

1. Killing The Dragon
2. Egypt / Children Of The Sea
3. Push
4. Drum Solo - Simon Wright
5. Stand Up And Shout
6. Rock And Roll
7. Don't Talk To Strangers
8. Man On The Silver Mountain
9. Guitar Solo - Doug Aldrich
10. Long Live Rock And Roll
11. Lord Of The Last Day
12. Fever Dreams
13. Holy Diver
14. Heaven And Hell
15. The Last In Line
16. Rainbow In The Dark
17. We Rock

Transfer Quality

Video

    I wish I could speak as highly of this DVD as I can of the man himself. The video transfer is far from perfect and deserved much more attention than it has obviously received.

    The video transfer is presented in 1.33:1 full frame and is obviously not 16x9 enhanced.

    There are few examples of sharpness in this transfer, which looks very much like it was sourced from videotape to me. Black levels are particularly ordinary on shots of the crowd and exhibit poor shadow detail. There are many instances of low level noise in the transfer, usually on the coloured backdrops.

    Colours appeared intense and oversaturated, with most brightly lit objects taking on a halo effect. This effect was particularly eye-catching and irritating.

    There are no film artefacts to be found, however there are many cases of MPEG over-compression and aliasing throughout the feature that are too numerous to mention.

    There are no subtitles available on this disc.

    This disc is dual-layered, and contains one of the most jaw-droppingly neglectful layer transitions I can recall. What could be more ridiculous than placing a layer change in the middle of a song? This abomination is located at 72:24 during the track Heaven And Hell and made me laugh with disbelief initially, but now just irritates me no end.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    There are three audio options, including Dolby Digital 5.1 and dts, as well as the default Dolby Digital 2.0.

    Brilliant vocal delivery is what Dio is renowned for, and that is what we get here. The vocals are always prominent in the mix and are enunciated perfectly throughout the performance. I had no problems whatsoever understanding the lyrics, but bear in mind that after listening to most of these songs for many years I know them back-to-front.

    There is a disturbing audio sync issue with this disc that affects all three of the audio options. The video content of the DVD is consistently ahead of the audio, which I find is most irritating on images of drummer Simon Wright because his snare and cymbal hits don't nearly match what is heard. Altogether this is a most disappointing effort.

    The Dolby Digital 5.1 and dts mixes are identical, with very little surround activity apart from some minor spill to the rears now and then. These soundtracks are almost completely frontal, with most instruments panned to the front left and right channels, while the vocals and snare drum are placed in the centre. The Dolby Digital 2.0 effort is very similar, but is considerably louder than the other two options. My preferred track of the three was certainly the dts, which contained much more depth and presence, as well as crisper tones from the cymbals and hi-hats.

    The subwoofer gave a few isolated thuds on occasion, but did not sound as though it was receiving any dedicated usage. Again, I expected better.

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

Extras

Menu

    The main menu is heavily compressed and looks pretty poor. A frame in the centre of the screen loops several highlights from the feature with audio accompaniment. The menu is not 16x9 enhanced.

Interview (11:22)

    This is a brief but enlightening interview with the man himself, covering a range of subjects from his relationship with New York and September 11, to his thoughts on religion and the philosophies behind his songwriting. Altogether this is a revealing and interesting interview that left me wanting more. The footage is presented at 1.78:1 without 16x9 enhancement.

Behind The Scenes (4:27)

    This is simply some home video footage taken by Wendy Dio while roadies are unloading gear and the band are warming up for the gig. One hilarious aspect of this intimate footage is that we get to hear the wife of one of the most revered singers in metal calling her husband Ronald. The footage is presented in 1.33:1, full frame.

Music Video - Push (5:26)

    This is a great music video with plenty of action, made even greater by the appearance of none other than The Greatest Band in the World, Tenacious D - who open the video with their own twisted rendition of the classic Black Sabbath song Heaven and Hell. The track Push is taken from Dio's latest album, Killing The Dragon. The video is presented in 1.78:1, without 16x9 enhancement, and contains Dolby Digital 2.0 audio.

Photo Gallery

    There are 48 pages of enlargeable thumbnails, all of which are snapshots of various band members with an assortment of fans.

R4 vs R1

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

    Both the Region 1 and Region 4 releases contain identical extras and menus, however the features are very different indeed. I'm lucky enough to have the Region 1 NTSC release on hand for this comparison, and the news is not good. It seems that neither release is perfect. In fact, I am hesitant to recommend either of them. The transfers differ greatly, and I hope that with the following details you'll be able to make an informed purchasing decision of your own.

    Firstly, it is worth noting that the Region 1 release is coded for all regions, contrary to the packaging.

    As I have already stated, our Region 4 release has irritating audio sync issues associated with each soundtrack, placing the image ahead of the audio. We also have an unbelievably neglectful layer transition, placed during the track Heaven and Hell which interrupts the song considerably. This pause may be less of an issue on players that have a large playback buffer, however the fact remains that it is there, and it could be better.

    Both video transfers have an average video bitrate of 7Mb/s and suffer from similar colour bleeding problems, which stem from the video source and not its transfer to DVD.

    The Region 1 release has entirely different issues, mostly concerned with video quality.

    So there you have it, you can choose either the butchered, over-compressed video transfer of the Region 1 release or the out-of-sync Region 4 with a terrible layer transition.

    It's a hard call, but I'm going to favour the Region 1 NTSC release on this occasion because despite its poor video quality at least some effort has been made to make the layer change pause less disruptive, and of course the audio is perfectly in sync with the video.

Summary

    Dio is a legendary performer and renowned pioneer of hard rock who is arguably the father of heavy metal as we know it today. The quality of musicianship in this performance is excellent and the set-list reads like a hard rock history lesson. Play this one loud.

    The video transfer is far from perfect, with many colour and audio sync issues.

    The audio transfer features a dts mix that is relatively frontal but is spread well across the front soundstage.

    There are a couple of interesting extras included to round off the package.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Rob Giles (readen de bio, bork, bork, bork.)
Tuesday, December 09, 2003
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-525, using Component output
DisplayPanasonic TX76PW10A 76cm Widescreen 100Hz. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationDenon AVR-2802 Dolby EX/DTS ES Discrete
SpeakersOrpheus Aurora lll Mains (bi-wired), Rears, Centre Rear. Orpheus Centaurus .5 Front Centre. Mirage 10 inch sub.

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Comments (Add)
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