20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
good value but some gaps,
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This review is from: Around The World Live [DVD]  [NTSC] (DVD)
This is a very well put together package which to some extent does what it says on the box, showing Jethro Tull throughout their career playing over the world from the Isle of Wight in 1970 to Switzerland in 2005.
There is some familiar material which is already easily available , e.g. Isle of Wight, Montreux and London 2001 but these are just a few tracks each which i guess is to give continuity and cover certain tracks.
There are , however, quite a few things that have not been released officially before and this is both the strength and , oddly enough , part of my criticism of the set.
I had a bootleg copy of the Tampa 1976 set and, for those of you who have not seen it, it is excellent, showing a youngish, almost clean shaven, confident (arrogant?) Ian Anderson with the classic band just pre their Rock/folky era and still with a foot in the prog/ rock camp displaying an energy and edge which I had not seen before. The bootleg copy, although good quality "bled" colours and gave the impression it was from an old video tape, I looked forward to a cleaned up clearer copy. Sadly, however, there doesn't seem to have been any improvement which with the technolgy today I thought might have been possible. Still it is very watchable and a must for those of you who have not seen it before.
Next up are 10 tracks from Germany in 1980 which I anticipated with great excitement as it was on this tour that I first saw Tull. Again, nothing wrong with the performance but the quality this time , as a previous reviewer wrote is poor bootleg quality and deteriorates throughout.
Following a few available tracks from Germany in '82 and 86 disc 2 concentrates on Chile 1996 which is fascinating. the quality is excellent and showcases the Roots to Branches album plus old favourites. Of their later albums I think it is one of their strongest and to see some of these tracks plus solo Anderson tracks performed live is very enjoyable. Ian Anderson is using a head mic which looks odd and he doesn't look very comfortable with it (I'm not aware of him using since?) Anderson's voice is just about holding up on most tracks and it isn't till the next discs that we sadly see the decline in full throttle.
That is the end of disc 2 and this is my other criticism! This is a 4 disc set and yet by the end of disc 2 we have seen Tull performing from what is (or probably will be ) their last but one studio album. The next two discs cover just six years and the last disc in Switzerland is quite painful at times as Ian Anderson is really struggling with his voice. Again, as a previous reviewer says, his presence and professionalism just about carries it but it can get painful (and for him I guess!) The studio , semi unplugged set from Holland in 1999 is quite nice and it was good to hear "The Secret Language of Birds"
There are huge gaps which I wish could have been covered. Nothing from the period between 1970 and 76? not even a track surviving from an archive? I have seen a 1977 in concert but I guess the BBC own that! I saw a few things from the Catfish Rising tour which looked exciting and could have filled in the 10 year gap between 1986 and 96 on disc 2.
Anyway, maybe I'm just being picky!!!Overall this is a very good package, excellent value and packaged well. There is a lot of good stuff to watch it just has a few gaps and quality issues that stops me giving it 5 stars!