|Year Released||1988||Commentary Tracks||None|
|Running Time||89:28 minutes||Other Extras||None|
Warner Vision Australia
Ladysmith Black Mambazo
|Case||Super Jewel Case|
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||MPEG||None|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None||Dolby Digital||None|
|16x9 Enhancement||No||Soundtrack Languages||English (Linear PCM 48/16,1536 Kb/s)|
|Theatrical Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||
English for the Hearing Impaired
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
This is a recording of a concert given at Rufaro Stadium, in Harare, Zimbabwe in 1987 in front of a large and enthusiastic crowd. At the time this was about as close as Paul Simon, Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masekela could get to South Africa for various reasons (Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masekela were political exiles), and it is interesting to speculate as to how much of a contribution these artists made to the dismantling of Apartheid in that country. The concert covers the entire Graceland album, with a few additional tracks from the guest performers. Looking at it now, it is not an especially great concert, but for its time it had a lot of meaning, and therefore the DVD makes a nice historical document.
This is obviously a transfer hamstrung by the quality of the source material, which is simply not the best. There is noticeable lack of focus at times, and the overall affect of the transfer is a flattish image with no real depth to it. It looks decidedly two dimensional at times. It is not at all sharp and the rather diffuse image at times I found tiring to watch. Overall, the transfer lacks a little in definition.
The colours are slightly muted and there is no hint of oversaturation at all - indeed there appeared to be a consistent undersaturation here. This is not a vibrant transfer at all, which is a pity as some of the gear worn by the performers looked very colourful. Funnily enough this contrasts with the impression I got from the Classic Albums issue, which contained a number of excerpts from this concert.
There did not appear to be any MPEG artefacts in the transfer, nor were film-to-video artefacts a problem. There did not appear to be any film artefacts present in the transfer, reflecting perhaps a video source for the material.
There is only the one audio track on the DVD, an English Linear PCM 48/16 soundtrack. This is CD quality sound.
The music and vocals are very clear and understandable in the soundtrack.
Audio sync did not appear to be a problem with the soundtrack.
The soundtrack does not make much use of the surround channels and completely ignores the bass channel. This is not a concern per se, as the resultant sound is very good and nicely detailed, and cranking up the volume really gets this little gem rocking along most enjoyably.
A decidedly average video transfer.
A good audio transfer.
But no extras.
© Ian Morris
13th January 2000
|DVD||Pioneer DV-515; S-video output|
|Display||Sony Trinitron Wega 84cm. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in|
|Amplification||Yamaha RXV-795. Calibrated with the NTSC DVD version of Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Energy Speakers: centre EXLC; left and right EXLR; and subwoofer ES-12XL|