Blondie: Live By Request [DVD] 
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Live by Request contains superb footage taken from the American TV special of the same name, plus four previously unseen songs, which were recorded at the same time but not broadcast. The performances are intersected with exclusive interview footage with band members, Debbie Harry and Chris Stein.
In 1974 Blondie was formed by art student guitarist Chris Stein and Playboy Bunny and platinum-haired beauty Debbie Harry. Blondie defied categorisation because they produced the music they loved, scoring the first major reggae, rock/disco and hip-hop hits, writing great rock hooks and brilliant ironic lyrics. They wore the hippest fashions and with Debbie's striking looks it wasn't long before she and the band were commanding the front covers of the biggest and trendiest magazines. Their thirty year career has included a staggering six UK No. 1's and many huge international smash hits including "Heart of Glass", "Call Me", "Maria" and "The Tide Is High"--all of which are featured on this DVD.
Originally performed and broadcast for A&E on May 7, 2004 from Manhattan's John Jay College, Blondie: Live by Request finds New York City's cherished punk-popsters older, rounder, and still in possession--if not always in complete control--of the fire needed for credible performances of classics like "Dreaming," "Rapture," "Call Me," and "Heart of Glass." The 2004 Blondie includes founders Deborah Harry, Chris Stein, and Clem Burke solidly backed by Paul Carbonara (guitar), Kevin Topping (keyboards), and Leigh Foxx (bass). The disc's 17 tracks comprise Blondie's biggest hits, with "Atomic" notably absent and four cuts from 2003's Curse of Blondie (including a touching tribute to Joey Ramone) holding their own against the tried and true. Harry remains her flamboyant self, compensating for a diminishing vocal range with fresh phrasings and boundless pizzazz. Lead guitarist Stein seems lost at times, while drummer Burke plays tighter than ever, cementing the songs with a mix of disco sass and punk fervor. Keep your remote handy: caller requests and the show's vapid emcee get old fast.
DVD sound is timbrally on target but dynamically compressed to within an inch of its life, but the mix breathes better in surround (Dolby or DTS) and it's easier on the ears in DTS. --Michael Mikesell
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Top Customer Reviews
A superbly packaged dvd also features the video of Good Boys (directed nonetheless that the man who directed Madonna's Ray of Light video!). One slight error as made by amazon is that the DVD does NOT include Maria which was only a minor hit in America. It does however include a stunning acoustic version of the Dream's Lost on Me and their ode to Joey Ramone, Hello Joe.
All in all, a worthy collection to any dvd collection and a must for Blondie Fans. Also worth buying the CD version of this DVD only available through Import!
The format of people phoning or e-mailing in to request their favourite track holds up the show and slows the pace so that whenever a real atmosphere starts it stops with a quick chat to a fan. I would have preferred a straight forward concert.
Debbie does well, although her vocal range has deteriorated since their heyday and she struggles to hit some of the higher notes, particularly on 'Heart of Glass' and 'Union City Blue'. Stein on guitar seems uninterested and you hardly hear him, whilst Clem on drums wants to show the world what a great drummer he is and indoing so ruins some of the great intro riffs that so many Blondie songs have.
There are some great songs, particularly 'Rip Her to Shreds' and 'Hangin' on the Telephone'. Notable by their absence though are 'Atomic', 'Maria' and 'Denis', which are three of my faves.
I guess you can't have it all, and on their worst day Blondie are still way above most of the rubbish that fills our charts nowadays!