Sade-Live (1994) (NTSC)

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Released 2-Mar-2001

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Music Discography
Rating Rated G
Year Of Production 1994
Running Time 96:00 (Case: 88)
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Programme
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Sophie Muller

Sony Music
Starring Sade
Case Brackley-Trans-No Lip
RPI $24.95 Music Sade

Video (NTSC) Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Linear PCM 48/16 2.0 (1536Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 480i (NTSC)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    It's amazing the things you learn when you start reviewing DVDs and hence start viewing titles you probably wouldn't normally watch. For instance, I had no idea that Sade was my father-in-law's favourite artist - I thought it was Gene Pitney!

    My prior exposure to Sade is via the half a dozen or so FM-friendly songs that regularly get an airing - familiar numbers such as Sweetest Taboo, No Ordinary Love and the very distinctive classic, Smooth Operator.

    Sade-Live was filmed at the San Diego Open Air theatre on 3 October 1993 and has presumably been released on DVD at this time to help promote Sade's first new studio album in some eight years - Lovers Rock.

    Helen Folasade Adu certainly has some talent, and a definite stage presence. Her voice can certainly reach some amazing levels, and yet still maintain a certain sexiness that few female performers can achieve.

    One aspect of this concert that I particularly liked was the lack of inclusion of audience footage. I want to see the performers perform, not the audience enjoying themselves. I don't mind hearing them through all the speakers, but I want to feel like I am in the front row and all the other paying punters are seated behind me.

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Track Listing

1. The Sweetest Taboo
2. Keep Looking
3. Your Love is King
4. Love Is Stronger Than Pride
5. Smooth Operator
6. Red Eye
7. Haunt Me
8. Like a Tattoo
9. Kiss Of Life
10. Nothing Can Come Between Us
11. Cherry Pie
12. Pearls
13. No Ordinary Love
14. Is It a Crime
15. Cherish The Day
16. Paradise
17. Jezebel

Transfer Quality


    The overall quality of the video in this transfer is just above average.

    It is presented full screen (1.33:1) and is therefore not 16x9 Enhanced. Like many of the Sony music titles it is an NTSC disc so I wasn't expecting outstanding video quality.

    The majority of the transfer is reasonably sharp, with nice even colour distribution, though it is let down by some serious oversaturation of red during several of the songs (Smooth Operator at 19:30 and Kiss Of Life at 39:09 are specific examples), that leave the background performers looking like red blobs on legs.

    The shadow detail is somewhat lacking at times, though this may be intentional on the part of the lighting crew as it only involves the support band and not Sade herself. Concert footage can sometimes be difficult to assess, as you need to determine if you should actually be able to see a particular performer, or just hear them!

    I did not notice any MPEG artefacts and there were no aliasing problems.

    There are subtitles for English, French, and Spanish. I turned on the English subtitles for the majority of the disc and did not notice any errors.

Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    There are two audio tracks included, a Dolby Digital 5.1 and a PCM Stereo 2.0 track. I listened to the whole of the Dolby Digital 5.1 track and sampled the PCM track on half a dozen songs. Overall, I thought the quality of both tracks was exceptional and made up for the poorer video quality.

    There are no visible audio sync problems and Sade was always clear and easy to understand.

    The Dolby Digital 5.1 track was actually more of a 3.1 track, as the rear effects were not used at all. This didn't overly detract from the listening experience as the soundstage is spread nicely across the front, and many would argue that the only thing they should hear from the rears is the audience.

    The Dolby Digital 5.1 had the benefit of the centre speaker to create a wider soundstage, but I thought the PCM track handled the brass instruments better, especially in the higher range. Some of the percussion instruments such as bongos were nicely enhanced by the subwoofer in the Dolby Digital Soundtrack.

    The subwoofer received only a moderate workout, though it did enhance several songs quite nicely without drawing undue attention to itself.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use



    Very basic in design. Allows you to navigate through all of Sade's albums in chronological order. Lists all tracks on each album.


    Quite comprehensive, though it is just plain text that is quite small. It details some of the more personal details of Sade in addition to the albums she has released.

R4 vs R1

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

    The Region 1 and Region 4 discs are exactly the same.


  Sade-Live is certainly an enjoyable concert DVD, though it is let down by some poor video quality. The audio is excellent and is worth listening to by itself. Overall, Sade-Live provides alternative versions to some Sade classics that fans will enjoy immensely.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Darren Walters (It's . . . just the vibe . . . of my bio)
Wednesday, April 04, 2001
Review Equipment
DVDToshiba 1200, using S-Video output
DisplayLoewe Calida (84cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationHarmon/Kardon AVR7000.
SpeakersFront - B&W 602S2, Centre - B&W CC6S2, Rear - B&W 601S2, Sub - Energy E:xl S10

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