Wow, this CD/DVD package is probably the best piece of Metallica merchandise that’s ever been released.
Before we get into the nitty gritty, let’s look back and take stock of exactly what we’ve got here. Many years ago my pal got his hands on a very exciting box full of goodies. It had Metallica videos and CDs in it (Metallica playing live – awesome!), it had a stencil and a mag (if I recall correctly). I borrowed the videos dozens of times. This was the height of my Metallica fanaticism. Nothing was better than the Live Sh*t: Binge and Purge box set my mate had.
Now, many years later, I find that it has been released on DVD, and oh how excited I was to get it through the post! Now neatly packed in a double-CD-sized case, it’s still the Binge and Purge box-set, but brought right up-to-date. The live CDs are here in all their glory, the Mexico City gig spread over 3 CDs, there’s the stencil and Snakepit pass, but the best stuff is on the 2 DVDs. These are region 1 however I’m guessing they’ll be available on R2 as well.
DVD1 is the gig from San Diego during the tour for the Black album in the early ‘90s. It’s an enormous slog through an amazing set of tunes, but standouts include The Unforgiven (what a solo) and The Four Horsemen (Lars does his dash across the stage during this one). That’s not to say any of the others are less amazing though. How often do you get to see them play Through the Never?
Then there’s the Seattle gig from 1989, on DVD2. This is pre-Black album and in my opinion captures Metallica at their greatest. It just doesn’t get better than hearing them open with Blackened, and the version of One from this gig remains my all-time favourite ‘live performance music video’ (thank you, Headbangers Ball). Because this is a little older, it’s a little more special than the San Diego gig. Plus they look kinda funny, being a little younger.
This is a beautifully presented package, small and neat, and very nostalgic. No more fast-forwarding to a particular song, just jump straight to it via the easy navigation system. The best part of the video for me was seeing the camera pan across the crowd just before they played Battery – now I can jump straight to it without searching through the damn tape! (If you’re like me and jam along to Metallica tunes, the Seattle set is one of those gigs you can play along with all the way through – but it’s a tad difficult, especially because they played a lot faster then than they do know. That Battery riff is a tad tricky to play along with on these DVDs! Orch, the ache!).
This is vintage Metallica – miss it, and miss out big time.