On March 14th, 2009 Journey performed a landmark concert in Manila before thousands of fans. The concert was a landmark for the band because it marked a homecoming for the band’s then new front man Arnel Pineda. It marked the first time that Pineda had performed in front of his fellow countrymen since joining the band two years prior in 2007. Though, not the first time that Pineda had performed with the band since he replaced former front man Steve Augeri—who left the band in 2006—it was still a very special performance both for Pineda and for his band mates. It ended up being recorded for DVD and released on DVD the same month. Now seven years following its original release, that same concert will be re-issued by Eagle Rock Entertainment on separate DVD + 2CD combo pack, Blu-ray + 2CD combo pack, and digital platforms. The concert will be released this Friday in stores and online. For fans that were not lucky enough to get their hands on the concert’s original presentation, this upcoming re-issue offers plenty to appreciate beginning with its set list. That will be discussed later. The band’s stage presence throughout the concert is another positive to the concert. Last but definitely not least of note in to the new re-issue’s presentation is its companion booklet. Each element presents its own importance to the recording’s overall presentation. All things considered, they make Journey: Live in Manila yet another clear example of what makes Eagle Rock Entertainment the leading name in live entertainment and why Journey remains today one of the most respected bands in the rock community.
Journey: Live in Manila is yet another example of what makes Eagle Rock Entertainment the leading name in live recordings and why Journey remains today one of the most respected bands in the rock community. That is due in part to the concert’s extensive set list. The twenty-six song set list spans two CDs and almost every era of the veteran band’s life. Fans will especially appreciate in examining the recording that every song featured in the recording’s CD presentation is also included in its DVD and Blu-ray presentation, too. On the surface that might not seem like much to some audiences. But the reality of the matter is that there are many live recordings out there that feature set lists which vary between their CD presentations and DVD/BD presentations. That includes not only their sequencing but also in the very omission of songs in one format or the other. They are not rare but they are not overly prominent either. That being the case, the fact that the set list presented in this concert is exactly the same both in terms of its featured songs and its sequencing is a major positive to note. The fact that it reaches through so much of Journey’s catalogue makes the show’s set list even more notable. The set list is, of course, just one of the concert’s most notable elements. The band’s stage presence throughout the course of the extensive two hour plus concert is just as important to note in its presentation as the shows set list.
The extensive set list that is presented in Journey: Live in Manila is a hugely important part of the concert’s presentation. That is because it reaches through so much of the band’s catalogue. It is also important to note because even now in the concert’s re-issue the show’s set list remains the same on CD, DVD and Blu-ray. It stays the same both in terms of its makeup and its sequencing. It is just one part of what makes the concert’s presentation so enjoyable for fans in this new re-issue. The band’s stage presence throughout the course of the concert is just as important to note as the featured set list. Whether in its CD presentation or in its DVD/BD presentation, the band’s stage presence is incredible from beginning to end. Pineda proves at every point that the band made the right choice bringing him in as its new front man. From his vocal prowess to his very charisma and energy, Pineda keeps the throngs completely engaged in his homecoming. Pineda’s band mates are just as impressive in their performances, too. Between the powerhouse riffs provided by guitarist Neil Schon, the creative and impeccable time keeping of drummer Deen Castronovo, Jonathan Cain’s keyboard lines, and bassist Ross Valory’s bass line, every member of the band brings his own special touch to the band’s overall stage presence. Altogether, the energy exuded by the band puts the show over the top. That is especially the case when the band’s presence is coupled with the set list itself. When both elements are set against one another, the reasons for Journey fans to own this collection become even clearer. They are not the only elements that are worth noting in the recording’s presentation, though. As with so many Eagle Rock recordings, the recording’s companion booklet plays its own important part here believe it or not.
The set list that is featured in Journey: Live in Manila and the band’s performance thereof are both key elements to the recording’s overall presentation. That is because of their ability to entertain home audiences just as much as the audiences that were in attendance for the original concert. Both elements succeed entirely. They are not the only key elements to consider in this recording, however. Believe it or not, the concert’s companion booklet plays a part in the concert’s presentation that is just as important as the concert’s set list and the band’s stage presence. That is because the booklet sets up the concert contained in the various platforms. It shows once again why there will always be a place for physical copies of any recording even in a digital age. The companion booklet sets up the concert by presenting a written background on how Arnel Pineda came to be Journeys then new front man and the importance of his performance with the band in his home country only a couple of years after he first joined the band. Even being in written form, that brief but concise history paints a rich picture of the band’s rebirth and its triumphant “return” of sorts upon that rebirth. It is a picture that is so rich that it is easy to see everything unfold in one’s own mind. It shows why the booklet, as simple as it might be, is just as important to the concert’s presentation and experience as are the shows featured set list and the band’s performance thereof. What’s even more interesting is that it still is not the last element that could be noted. The top notch audio and video mix could be noted just as much as the concert’s packaging, too. But those are elements for another discussion. All things considered, Journey: Live in Manila shows in the end once more why Eagle Rock Entertainment remains today the leading name in live recordings and why Journey remains to this day one of the most respected bands in the rock community.
Journey: Live in Manila is a must have recording for any true fan of the veteran rock outfit. It is one more clear example of why Eagle Rock Entertainment remains today the leading name in live recordings. It is just as much an example of why Journey remains today one of the most respected acts in the rock community. That is evidenced through the set list featured in this recording, the band’s performance thereof, and companion booklet that comes with the recording’s new re-issue. One could also cite the recording’s packaging as a positive and its top notch production values, too. Each element is important in its own right. That goes without saying. All in all this re re-issue shows itself to be a welcome addition to any Journey fan’s music library. It will be available tomorrow, September 9th in stores and online. More information on Journey: Live in Manila is available online now at:
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