Texas-Texas, Paris (2001)

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Released 11-Jan-2002

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Menu Animation & Audio
Active Subtitle Track
Music Video-12
Featurette-Interviews/Clips (7)
Music Video-Summer Son Live from Brixton Academy
DVD-ROM Extras
Booklet
Easter Egg-Hidden Videos (3)
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 2001
Running Time 76:50
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Dick Carruthers
Studio
Distributor
Mercury Records
Universal Pictures Home Video
Starring Texas
Case Flexbox
RPI ? Music Texas


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (256Kb/s)
English dts 5.1 (768Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.78:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles Active Subtitle Track Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Texas are a Scottish pop band that have been extremely successful without ever really setting the world on fire. Their very first single, 1989s I Don't Want A Lover, is probably their most well known song, although more recent efforts such as Say What You Want from 1997s White On Blonde and Inner Smile from 2000s Greatest Hits have also made impressions.

    This concert takes a ride through their greatest hits, taking songs both recent and old and presenting them to a crowd of over 17,000 people in Paris. It is always good to see a band that do not concentrate solely on new material, and while Texas have really changed their sound and style over their last two albums, the concert still presents many songs from their more traditional rock days.

    The concert is a large effort, with a band that in addition to lead singer and occasional guitarist Sharleen Spiteri, includes bass and lead guitars, keyboards, drums, two backing singers, and a DJ. The inclusion of the DJ is an interesting move, and the success of which could well be debated. It is obvious his inclusion is in an effort to experiment with a blend of pure pop and hip-hop, but it often comes off with a muddled sound that really does not know what it wants to be. Fortunately, this influence is really only felt on a couple of occasions during the show, and the crowd's enthusiastic reaction is enough to carry the concert through those moments.

    Over all, this is a concert disc that would be well worth checking out for any fan of Texas. Even if, like myself, you own only one of their albums, there is enough here to keep, and even re-kindle, interest.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Track Listing

1. In Demand
2. Black Eyed Boy
3. Halo
4. In Our Lifetime
5. Guitar Song
6. Insane
7. Tired Of Being Alone
8. So In Love With You
9. Prayer For You
10. I Don't Want A Lover
11. When We Are Together
12. Summer Son
13. Inner Smile
14. Suspicious Minds
15. Say What You Want

Transfer Quality

Video

    The video transfer presented here is quite variable, but at best can only be described as merely adequate - it really could have been a lot better.

    Presented at an aspect ratio of 1.78:1, this transfer is 16x9 enhanced.

    In general, the transfer is quite sharp, however there are some angles from which the image is decidedly soft. Grain is, for the most part, kept to a minor role, however there are certain camera angles for which the artistic choice appears to have been for high grain. During the credits, a listing for a "Super 8mm" operator is given, and what I assume is that this camera presents truly horrendous picture quality, displaying extreme levels of grain, and being constantly flecked with film artefacts. Unfortunately, from a technical point of view, the use of this angle really degrades the entire presentation. Shadow detail is quite decent, with the dark and light areas of the stage, as well as the audience, showing a very good amount of contrast, while never really disappearing into the murky black.

    The colours are good enough, but don't quite seem have the vibrancy required for a live show. There is nothing wrong with them as they are, however they really could have been a little better.

    There are no compression artefacts present in this transfer. There are a few instances of aliasing, mostly caused by the usual culprits, such as guitar strings and necks, however the aliasing that occurs on the edge of the keyboard from 30:15 all the way through Tired Of Being Alone is very distracting. For the most part, the transfer is free from film artefacts, but the shots that obviously come from the Super 8 camera are terrible. They look like the film stock was bathed in acid, and dragged through the dirt before being fed through the camera, and as such are a constant mosaic of artefacts. Again, this was obviously an artistic choice, but it does detract from the transfer.

    There are no subtitles present on this disc, so you will have to know the lyrics in order to sing along.

    This is a Dual Layer disc that appears to have the entire concert on one layer, and the extra features on the other, as there was no detectable layer change during the concert.

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

Audio

    Like the video transfer, the audio transfer is somewhat lacklustre. It is not so much that it is a bad transfer, but that the sound is quite "flat", and pales in comparison to many other music DVDs.

    There are three audio tracks present on this disc, being a Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo track, a Dolby Digital 5.1 track, and a DTS 5.1 track. Of the three, the Dolby 2.0 track is the highest quality, with a more complete sound than either 5.1 mix, including a far deeper bass extension. Interestingly enough, the least impressive track is the DTS 5.1 mix, presenting very little bass information, and a very flat sounding mix overall.

    Vocals are always clear and easy to hear. The mix levels are spot on, never masking vocals with music, while the vocals do not overpower the music either. The audio separation for all mixes was very similar, with little use made of the centre channel for the 5.1 mixes, and all were good enough to present a decent live experience.

    For the concert itself, audio sync was never a problem. The same cannot be said of some of the music videos, however they are not the issue here.

    Both 5.1 mixes used the surround channels in the same manner, being mostly for crowd noise, providing a decent feeling of being there are the concert. Unfortunately, this was about the only advantage the 5.1 tracks had over the 2.0 track.

    The subwoofer received very little attention during the concert, only rarely getting above a minor rumble, especially from the 5.1 tracks. The subwoofer received more re-directed bass from the 2.0 soundtrack than from the .1 parts of either 5.1 track.

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

Extras

    There is an extremely impressive collection of extras presented on this disc. I would go so far as to say that this is the best collection of extras that I have seen on a music DVD yet.

Menu

    The menu is 16x9 enhanced, animated, and features images of Paris, and from the concert. It is set to a Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack.

Promotional Videos (47:53)

    This section contains the "promotional videos" (the type of video clip that you would see on Rage on a Saturday morning) for each song in the main concert feature (or at least those that have video clips). The videos are as follows:     All videos are presented at 1.78:1, are 16x9 enhanced, and feature Dolby Digital 2.0 sound. As some of the videos are quite old, they have been "matted" to achieve the widescreen aspect ratio, with the result being heads that disappear off the top of the screen, and other such oddities. Videos filmed in 4:3 should have been presented in 4:3 (although still 16x9 enhanced), however as we are talking about promotional videos for pop songs, the abuse of the original material is not really an enormous issue.

Interactive Sub-title Track

    This is a sub-title track that displays the word "Texas" for a few seconds at the start of each song during the concert that has a corresponding video. This feature, while quite simple, is also very effective, allowing a comparison between the studio recording of the song, and the live performance.

Interview (Sharleen Spiteri) (14:14)

    This interview can either be watched in eight separate sections, or as a whole via a play all option. The content of this interview is quite interesting, especially for a casual fan of the band, as it covers quite a bit of background on both Sharleen Spiteri individually, and Texas as a whole. The entire interview is also subtitled in English, presumably for those who find it difficult to understand Sharleen Spiteri's thick Scottish accent.

Summer Son Live at Brixton Academy (4:58)

    This is an acoustic performance of the song Summer Son, live at Brixton Academy (obviously).

Hidden Videos

    There are three hidden videos on this DVD. The first contains the performances of Guitar Song and Insane from the concert presented with the same Dolby Digital 2.0 sound, but set to back-stage video clips. It can be accessed from the main menu by arrowing right then down from the "Play" option to highlight a "T" - select it to play the videos. The second video is the performance of So In Love With You from the concert, again with the original Dolby Digital 2.0 sound, but set to the video from the Super 8mm camera (hence this video is rather ugly). It can be accessed from the extras menu by arrowing left then up from the "ROM" option to highlight a "T" - select it to play the video. The final extra is a performance of Say What You Want from another concert featuring Texas with a large rapper (I have no idea who), rather successfully destroying the song. It can be accessed from the videos page, by arrowing down then left from the "1-5" selection to highlight a "T" - select it to play the video.

DVD-ROM Content

    Do you want everyone to know you love Texas? Well now you can with a choice of two Texas screensavers.

Booklet

    This is a small four page effort that simply contains the copyright details and running times for each of the tracks presented during the concert, along with the cover art for every Texas CD so far.

R4 vs R1

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

    This DVD is not available in the US (although it is coded for all regions), however the exact same disc is available from Europe (although it would be a lot cheaper to buy it locally).

Summary

    Texas - Paris is a very good DVD that makes good use of the DVD format to present a good concert coupled with the music videos for each of the songs in the concert.

    The video quality is of an adequate standard, however it could easily have been better.

    The audio quality is simply sufficient without being spectacular. Somewhat indicative of this is that the best soundtrack on the disc is the stereo track.

    There is an extensive collection of extras presented on this disc that very much aid in the appreciation of the concert. If only every music DVD came with as many quality extras as this.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Nick Jardine (My bio, it's short - read it anyway)
Monday, March 18, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV-535, using Component output
DisplayLoewe Xelos 5381ZW. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationOnkyo TX-DS787, THX Select
SpeakersAll matching Vifa Drivers: centre 2x6.5" + 1" tweeter (d'appolito); fronts and rears 6.5" + 1" tweeter; centre rear 5" + 1" tweeter; sub 10" (150WRMS)

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