David Gray-Live in Slow Motion (2006)
Featurette-Making Of-Life In Slow Motion
Music Video-The One I Love, Hospital Food, Alibi
|Year Of Production||2006|
|Running Time||119:36 (Case: 139)|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (65:54)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||Hamish Hamilton|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Linear PCM 48/16 2.0 (1536Kb/s)
English dts 5.1 (768Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
2006 proved a landmark year for me when it came to attending concerts. Quite miraculously, within the space of seven months I managed to see all three of my all-time favourite artists as they toured Australia. What made this even more remarkable was that one of them had to reform after many years in order for me to see them in June (Split Enz), another had to come out of a lengthy touring retirement for his November show (Billy Joel) and the third had never visited my home town before, preferring to stick to the east coast of the country.
But thankfully this last artist decided to come to town in April and it was this show that had me the most excited. That artist was of course David Gray and his show at Burswood Theatre on April 26 proved to be among my most memorable highlights of the year. It was the sort of show that had me humming a dozen or so of his songs constantly for weeks afterwards and listening to at least one of his seven albums non-stop in the car and at home. Finally getting to see such gems as This Year's Love and Babylon performed live with a crowd of fellow David Gray devotees soaking up every single moment made me realise just how good it can be in an audience filled with fans who know every word. For me, a live performance did not get any better and it even surpassed the fact I was in the front row of the Billy Joel show later in the year.
The concert I saw and the one featured on this DVD were both in support of Gray's 2005 release Life In Slow Motion. This DVD concert was recorded at London's Hammersmith in early December 2005. A good portion of the show features songs from the Slow Motion album and includes the radio friendly first single The One I Love, the cheeky Hospital Food, and the achingly poignant duo Alibi and Ain't No Love. Songs from throughout Gray's career featured, though obviously his 1998 mega-selling breakthrough album White Ladder dominates, with songs such as My Oh My, Sail Away, Please Forgive Me, Nightblindness, Silver Lining, This Year's Love and of course the big hit Babylon performed. 2002's follow-up to White Ladder, A New Day At Midnight contributes just one song in Freedom, while earlier album offerings include the ever-popular sing-along (with obligatory hand gestures) Shine from Gray's debut A Century Ends. The show (both the DVD one and the one I saw) were rounded out with a rousing cover of The Cure's Friday I'm In Love.
Gray is a songwriter of rare emotion. There's little cliché or gushy sentiment on display and sure he writes about relationships, bittersweet love, lost love and the like, just like all the rest. But, he does it somehow differently. He wears his heart of his sleeve and tells a story with an open and vulnerable honesty that is both captivating and heartbreaking. Songs like the funky groove of Please Forgive Me, the wistful Sail Away, the uplifting joy of Shine, the poignancy of Ain't No Love and the sheer passion from the sing-along hit Babylon prove this is a class show all the way.
A great support band, led with flair, passion and a hint of manic energy by drummer Clune, rarely missed a beat. The only negative - much like the show I attended there is little of David Gray's personality on show other than the songs. He doesn't feel the need to interact with the audience as much as some artists and so there is very little banter between him and the punters. A small gripe, and with the quality of the music on display one I can ignore.
Fans will need little encouragement to get a hold of this disc. If you've not been exposed to the delights of this highly talented Englishman, get a hold of this and have a listen. You will not be disappointed.
2. The One I Love
3. Nos Da Cariad
4. My Oh My
5. Sail Away
6. Disappearing World
8. Please Forgive Me
10. Ain't No Love
|11. Hospital Food|
13. Now And Always
14. Silver Lining
17. This Year's Love
19. Friday I'm In Love
This is a very, very nice video transfer that is nearly perfect.
It is displayed in the aspect ratio of 1.78:1, it is also 16x9 enhanced.
It is just about as sharp as you can expect from a modern digital recording. There are no problems with any form of edge enhancement and shadow detail is never compromised despite Gray having a liking for performing some of his songs in near darkness. There is no grain at all and no low level noise. The colours are excellent, with none of the usual concert problems such as oversaturation or flaring. Skin tones are perfect and the varied coloured shirts of the band members are beautifully saturated, none more so than drummer Clune with his Hawaiian shirt and glowing brushes and sticks.
There are no compression or other artefacts of any sort anywhere.
There are no subtitles.
A dual layered disc with the layer change at 65:54 between Baltimore and Hospital Food. It is well placed.
There are three audio soundtracks on this disc, including a lovely 768Kb/s dts soundtrack. It is joined by a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at the bitrate of 448Kb/s and a PCM stereo offering encoded at 1536 Kb/s. In short, these soundtracks are superb with basically nothing to fault. There is substantial and very well handled instrument separation across the front channels with vocals placed over all three front speakers. Each instrument is beautifully reproduced here.
The vocals are prominent throughout. Their delivery is as clear and fresh as can be. These are quality soundtracks and it is the vocal quality that really shines. It is also here that the dts soundtrack marginally nudges the Dolby Digital soundtrack for quality. They are just a little bit more clearer and natural sounding on the dts soundtrack. There are no audio sync problems.
There is constant and consistent surround channel use. It is mostly used for the audience sounds and becomes most notable during the breaks between songs or when the audience sings solo during Please Forgive Me. There is a little instrument separation to the rear channels, but when it does happen it doesn't sound unnatural or forced.
The subwoofer is seamlessly integrated.
|Surround Channel Use|
A pretty brief making of (runs for just 9:47), but gives a quick insight into some of the changes David Gray made from his previous album when recording Life In Slow Motion including moving to an old converted church as his new studio. The influence of drummer Clune is also obvious from this featurette as he seems to pop up everywhere.
Three videos for the songs from Life In Slow Motion. We get a very thought-provoking and intimate video for Alibi (4:34), plus Hospital Food (4:03) and a very classy The One I Love (3:32).
The Region 1 and UK Region 2 discs are identical to the Region 4 offering.
David Gray - Live In Slow Motion is a superb concert from a talented and inspiring singer/songwriter. It is a perfect companion disc to the previously released Live At The Point in Dublin DVD. Live In Slow Motion is about as good as it will get for fans of David Gray, with a confident artist at his peak. This is a concert that will be replayed many times in my house as I fondly remember the fantastic year for live shows that was 2006.
The video and audio quality are excellent while the making of extra is a nice bonus.
|DVD||Denon DVD-3910, using RGB output|
|Display||Loewe Calida (84cm). Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL).|
|Speakers||Front - B&W 602S2, Centre - B&W CC6S2, Rear - B&W 601S2, Sub - Energy E:xl S10|