The Beach Boys-Good Vibrations Tour (1976)

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Released 15-Mar-2004

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Main Menu Audio & Animation
Scene Selection Anim & Audio
Rating Rated E
Year Of Production 1976
Running Time 49:36 (Case: 120)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Gary Weis
Studio
Distributor

Warner Vision
Starring Brian Wilson
Carl Wilson
Dennis Wilson
Mike Love
Al Jardine
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $34.95 Music The Beach Boys


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English dts 5.1 (768Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.29:1
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles Dutch
French
German
Italian
Portuguese
Spanish
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 the third Beach Boys DVD I have reviewed for Michael D's. The Beach Boys - Good Vibrations Tour is probably the poorest in terms of overall video quality, and despite the dts and 5.1 audio tracks on offer is not particularly impressive in the audio department. Luckily, the interspersed interview clips make up for the pretty poor concert footage. Another saving grace is that it contains several songs I had never seen the Beach Boys perform live before.

    Shot at Anaheim Stadium after the Beach Boys re-formed in 1976, this DVD features a number of classic favourites from these sons of the surf, but it is the quirky and rare interview footage that makes this worth a watch. Van Dyke Parks talks about how the Beach Boys compare to The Beatles, whilst the obese Brian Wilson spends the entire time of his interview in bed. The outfits will bring a sick feeling to the pit of the stomach of anyone who remembers living in the early seventies - glittery tops for Mike Love, one-piece belted cat suits for Carl Wilson...ouch! Denis Wilson of course looks as cool - and spaced out - as ever.

    The "arrest" of Brian by Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi is hilarious, as is the pained expression on Dennis' face as he judges a cringe-inducing local beauty pageant. Despite the limitations there is some fun to be had for die-hard fans, but for anyone else this DVD is only worth a rental.

    This film is not really just a concert tape - in fact it was a made for NBC documentary, originally called The Beach Boys - It's OK when first broadcast in the USA in 1976. From a purely concert perspective, this DVD is not as accomplished as The Beach Boys - Live In Concert: Knebworth, 1980, but as a fun means for fans to relive the "vibe" of the Beach Boys circa 1976 it will still be of some value. It should be noted that (despite the fact that the case states a running time of 120 minutes) this is a very short DVD, with a running time of less than fifty minutes in total - this may affect the price even die-hard fans are prepared to pay.

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Track Listing

1. Fun, Fun, Fun
2. Be True To Your School
3. I'm Bugged At My Ol' Man
4. God Only Knows
5. I Get Around
6. You Are So Beautiful
7. That Same Song
8. Good Vibrations
9. Sloop John B
10. Surfin' USA
11. California Girls
12. Help Me Rhonda
13. It's OK
14. Rock 'n' Roll Music
15. Wouldn't It Be Nice

Transfer Quality

Video

    The overall video quality of this disc is rather mediocre - but perhaps almost forgivable for almost thirty year old source materials.

    The footage is presented full frame at 1.29:1 which is likely to be very close to the original broadcast aspect ratio. It is not therefore 16x9 enhanced.

    The transfer is generally very grainy and sharpness suffers because of this. Focus is not the best at times and this doesn't help in the sharpness stakes either. Shadow detail is fairly poor and black levels, although quite deep, do suffer from low-level noise at times. There is some flare present on chrome - microphone stands for instance. Colours are washed out and insipid but still suffer from some colour bleeding at times. I suspect this is more about the limitations and age of the source footage than the transfer to DVD per se.

    The transfer is reasonably free from MPEG artefacts during the concert footage, but some of the supporting materials - surfing scenes in particular - do bear the scars of compression artefacts, with macro blocking and pixelisation quite noticeable. Film-to-video artefacts appear in the form of occasional aliasing and in a much more significant way as edge enhancement. There is some significant ghosting present around microphone stands in particular. The titles suffer from dot crawl

    There is a constant torrent of film artefacts throughout the DVD. Black specks, white specks, hairs, horizontal and vertical scratches are almost omnipresent.

    There are no English subtitles available.

    This is a single-sided single-layer disc (DVD 5) and it does not have a layer change.

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

Audio

    The overall audio quality of this disc is pretty mediocre, and sounds like it was recorded on a hand-held cassette recorder for the most part, despite the impressive range of audio formats on offer.

    The audio menu allows you to select either a dts 5.1 mix encoded at 768 kbps or a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 kbps. There is also a "lesser" Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo track (encoded at 192 kbps) available for those without surround capability. The two surround tracks are very similar to be honest.

    The sound is generally rather muddy with a very limited dynamic range. Much of the music simply sounds blended and rather mushy with very little clarity or delineation between the various instruments. Most tracks suffer from some appreciable distortion and clipping. The vocals are often muddy and this recording certainly does no justice to the majestic harmonies of the singers. An overall harsh and indistinct transfer I'm afraid, with no major drop-outs but a little hiss present. Feedback is minimal, cropping up only a couple of times. Audio sync was fine and the interview sections allow you to hear the spoken dialogue well enough.

    The insipid audio transfer is below modern CD quality. As with the video, I suspect that this is really inherent in the ageing source material rather than the transfer per se. Whilst the surrounds and subwoofer do see use throughout, they provide a fairly simple surround presence and no really significant bass presence. The crowd sounds appear from the effects speakers...but little else, and not very dramatically at that. There is little in the way of localised sound or separation and overall the audio mix feels pretty frontal in nature - this is not a great surround mix by any stretch of the imagination. The stereo track does just as well as the surround mixes, and may even be preferable for some fans.

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

Extras

    There are no extras on this disc.

Menu

    The menu is animated and accompanied by a loop of Good Vibrations allowing the selection of audio track, individual song access and the activation of Dutch, French, German, Italian, Portuguese or Spanish subtitles.

R4 vs R1

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

    This DVD does not appear to be available in Region 1. In Region 2 it appears to be the same as our own version. Buy whichever is cheaper.

Summary

    The Beach Boys - Good Vibrations Tour is not much of a concert DVD. The audio and video are decidedly mediocre, however the interview footage makes this of some value for serious fans of the band. The very short running time, however, makes the price you are prepared to pay for this DVD an important consideration.

    The video quality is mediocre.

    The audio quality is mediocre.

    There are no extra features.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel O'Donoghue (You think my bio is funny? Funny how?)
Saturday, September 18, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDMomitsu V880 upconverting DVI player, using DVI output
DisplaySanyo PLV-Z2 WXGA projector. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 720p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials/Digital Video Essentials.
AmplificationOnkyo TX-SR600 with DD-EX and DTS-ES
SpeakersJensenSPX-9 fronts, Jensen SPX-13 Centre, Jensen SPX-5 surrounds, Jensen SPX-17 subwoofer

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