80s DVD Jukebox (2003)

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Released 20-Nov-2003

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Menu Audio
Notes-The 80'S Fact File
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 2003
Running Time 77:24
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Robert Garofalo
Studio
Distributor
Stomp Visual Starring Frankie Goes To Hollywood
Duran Duran
Spandau Ballet
Talk Talk
Depeche Mode
OMD
Marianne Faithfull
Madness
Pretenders
Rod Stewart
Police
A Flock Of Seagulls
Robert Palmer
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI ? Music Various


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame 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

    I was a little taken aback when this disc arrived for review. I thought I was getting a compilation of 24 music videos. Two things grabbed my attention immediately. Firstly, the disc features fully remastered Dolby Digital and dts 5.1 soundtracks. Also, across the top of the front cover, it proudly proclaims itself to be a compilation of 24 Original TV recordings. TV recordings? My curiosity was suitably piqued. Just what was going on here and what on earth could this be if it wasn't music videos?

    What 80s DVD Jukebox is is a collection of some of the biggest acts of the early 80s, including one-hit wonders and bona-fide super-groups, all performing on the same small stage and filmed for a television show (like Countdown or Top Of The Pops). From what I can gather it was for a German television show called Musik Laden. There is a small stage, a few dodgy and cheap looking props, and an incredibly uninspiring audience. The acts are all miming, with some more obvious than others. Bob Geldof from The Boomtown Rats in particular seemed to forget he was supposed to be making it look like he wasn't miming. He cavorts around the stage with the microphone moving in all manner of directions except towards his mouth and yet we can still hear him!

    All up there are 24 tracks from 22 different artists (Rod Stewart and Frankie Goes To Hollywood score two tracks each). We get to see the likes of Duran Duran with Wild Boys, new romantic kings Spandau Ballet with Only When You Leave, Depeche Mode with Master and Servant, classic one-hit wonders A Flock Of Seagulls and their smash hit I Ran, The Police featuring a very young looking Sting and Stewart Copeland with De Do Do Do, De Da Da  Da, and the man with the best hairdo of the 1980s, Howard Jones, with his breakthrough single New Song.

    Probably the best thing about this disc (in addition to the excellent audio soundtracks) is the ability to see these artists (and some of them were pretty big name acts in their day) performing in a completely different surrounding and all at what is basically around the time their careers really started or just as they took off. There are no flash sets or stylistic videos here, and even though the performance are all mimed it is still heaps of fun.

    The following tracks appear on this 70 minute disc:

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Track Listing

1. Relax
2. Wild Boys
3. Only When You Leave
4. Such A Shame
5. Master And Servant
6. Talking Loud And Clear
7. Broken English
8. One Step Beyond
9. Brass In Pocket
10. Baby Jane
11. De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da
12. Looking For Clues
13. I Ran
14. Really Saying Something
15. A Message To You, Rudy
16. I Am The Beat
17. (She's) Sexy And 17
18. New Song
19. Two Tribes
20. Young Guns (Go For It)
21. There'sAGuyWorksDownTheChipShop
22. Banana Republic
23. What Am I Gonna Do
24. Do You Really Want To Hurt Me

Transfer Quality

Video

    As mentioned above, this video has been sourced from a German television show from the early 1980s. One would have thought the quality might have suffered significantly given the age, but truth be told, this is actually a fairly decent transfer.

    The aspect ratio is all 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.

    The level of sharpness and detail is average at times, and bordering on quite good at others. There are no issues with shadow detail since the television studio lights take care of most of the lighting. There is no grain at all and only a hint of low level noise on some of the black areas behind the acts.

    Colours are fairly common for the early 80s. Plenty of fluorescent colours and pastels that, whilst not being all that vibrant, are at least rendered well and are artefact free.

    No compression artefacts were detected. Video artefacts were also surprisingly absent.

    There are no subtitles.

    This is a single layered disc only so there is no layer change to navigate.

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

Audio

    Unlike many music compilation discs, 80s DVD Jukebox features a dts 5.1 soundtrack. It is joined by a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack. The dts track is encoded at the lower bitrate of 768kb/s. I listened to both 5.1 soundtracks in total and all the following comments apply pretty much to both since they are very similar.

    Both tracks have been remastered to make full use of 5.1 surround capabilities. This can often sound a little artificial, but these have been done quite well, with vocals anchored across the front speakers and other instruments and the like making use of the surrounds. They both come across as being pretty solid and spacious with virtually no distortion or noise. The only problem I detected was a mild background hiss on the Bananarama track. Otherwise, the audio is certainly the strong point of this disc which, given its title of DVD Jukebox, is just as well. The vocals are excellent, but don't expect too much in the way of decent audio sync here. Originally mimed and with the tracks being remastered, some of the sync is dreadful, some woeful, and some barely adequate.

    The subwoofer is tied in nicely with the overall soundtrack and really does shine on several of the tracks.



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

Extras

Menu Audio

Notes

    Fairly basic one-to-two page career summaries for all the acts featured.

R4 vs R1

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

    I can't find any reference to this disc in Region 1. From what I can gather the Region 2 disc is identical to this one.

Summary

    80s DVD Jukebox is a collection of some of the biggest acts of the early 80s, including one-hit wonders and bona-fide super-groups, all performing on the same small stage for a German television show called Musik Laden. From a nostalgia point of view the vision is a real treat, with many acts such as The Police, Wham, and Spandau Ballet very much in their early days of performing.

    The video is actually quite good given the age and the fact that it is television based.

    The remastered dts and Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack show the audio has been spruced up and they really shine quite brightly.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Darren Walters (It's . . . just the vibe . . . of my bio)
Sunday, February 01, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDLoewe Xemix 5106DO, using RGB output
DisplayLoewe Calida (84cm). Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).
AmplificationHarmon/Kardon AVR7000.
SpeakersFront - B&W 602S2, Centre - B&W CC6S2, Rear - B&W 601S2, Sub - Energy E:xl S10

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
a good value offering from Musik Laden, can't wait to taste it - gRANT (Read my bio, mmm... uncompressed surround audio)