Every Rolling Stones Fan Should Own Live At The Tokyo Dome

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment/Universal Music Group

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Universal Music Group

The Rolling Stones is the greatest rock band in the world. Period. That might be something of a subjective statement from this critic. But it is this critic’s own view. The band has spent the better part of half a century and then some proving its greatness. It has done so through the release of nearly thirty albums, at least thirteen live albums, and countless live performances throughout its life. One of those live recordings–Live at The Tokyo Dome–was released late last month as part of the band’s “From The Vault” series of recordings. This recording is one of the most important in the band’s extensive catalogue of live recordings. The main reason for this is the span of time that had passed between this show and the band’s most recent tour at the time, which had ended in Leeds in 1982. That is a span of seven years. While the band’s show at the Tokyo Dome wasn’t the lead off for the band’s Steel Wheels Tour, it still remains an important piece of the band’s history considering that span of time. Staying in that pattern of thought, the band’s stage presence throughout the course of the roughly two-hour performance lies at the center of the recording. That will be discussed shortly. In the same vein, the show’s featured set list is just as important to the presented concert as the band’s performance. Audiences will be interested to learn that of the concert’s twenty-four song set, the majority of its songs were lifted from the band’s older, more familiar albums than the band’s then latest album Steel Wheels. That will be discussed later as it plays its own important role in the whole of this recording. Last but hardly least of note in Live at The Tokyo Dome’s overall presentation is the presentation’s collective production values. The concert’s audio mix is surprisingly impressive. The video portion is just as interesting. That is because it shows just how far video recording technology has come since the concert’s recording. It is one more reason that this concert recording proves to be so important to the band’s history. Together with the band’s performance and its featured set list, the concert in whole shows in the end to be yet another great addition to The Rolling Stones’ “From The Vault” series.

The latest addition to The Rolling Stones’ “From The Vault” series, Live at The Tokyo Dome is one of the most important pieces of the band’s history to be released in recent history. That is because the concert presented here is part of a tour (The “Steel Wheels Tour”) that was the first for the band in seven years at the time. Before the band embarked on the “Steel Wheels Tour” in August 1989, its members had not been out on the road together since having performed in Leeds in 1982. That concert will be released by Eagle Rock Entertainment later this month. Now having noted this, the band’s stage presence in its Valentines Day 1990 concert is the concert’s most important element to note. Core members Mick Jagger and Keith Richards performed like they had never been away from the road. Mick strutted and danced all over the stage from start to finish, giving his all. Just as interesting (if not more so) to note of Jagger’s performance is his interaction with the audience. He spent a fair share of time talking to the audience and even going out into the audience at one point in the show. That’s just one part of what makes his interaction with the audience so intriguing. Most intriguing is that he seemed to speak to the audience in Japanese in more than just a couple of sentences. He really came across as being fluent in the language considering just how much he spoke in the audience’s home language. This is key to note because of just how many performers are trained in just a couple of phrases here in there for their respective foreign audiences even today. Jagger didn’t go that route. He really came across as being quite familiar with the language. It’s refreshing to hear. Moving on, lead guitarist Keith Richards was just as entertaining both as the band’s lead guitarist and in his time on the mic. That’s right. Richards even got his own time on the mic as he had written a pair of songs–‘Can’t Be Seen’ and ‘Happy’–for Steel Wheels. By comparison, bassist Bill Wyman showed nearly no emotion at all throughout the evening’s performance. Of course after the tour wrapped up later that year in Europe, Wyman and the band parted ways. Considering the well publicized issues among the band during its time away from the road prior to the “Steel Wheels Tour,” one becomes less surprised by Wyman’s apparent lack of interest and energy throughout the show. By comparison drummer Charlie Watts looked right at home behind the drum kit from beginning to end. He played his part like it was old hat yet still presented an air of truly enjoying being on stage again. One could also go into the performance provided by the band’s backup singers and musicians. But it goes without saying that their energy was just as positive, leading in turn to a show that audiences watching the show at home today will enjoy just as much as those audiences that were in attendance at the original performance. That is because the band in whole (including the backup performers) performed here as if it had never been away from the road. It’s just one part of the concert’s presentation that makes the recording so enjoyable. The show’s set list is just as important to the recording as the band’s performance.

The Rolling Stones’ stage presence (and that of the band’s backing performers) is central to the overall presentation of Live at The Tokyo Dome. It showed a group of performers that had obviously not lost a step in all of its years off the road and despite its own internal issues. While the musicians’ stage presence is important to the recording’s presentation in its own right, it is only one part of the presentation that should be noted. The show’s featured set list is just as important to the whole of the concert as the band’s stage presence. This is especially the case considering that while the band was touring in support of its then new album Steel Wheels, only five of the show’s twenty-four songs were pulled from that album. The other nineteen songs were older, more familiar tunes. It reaches all the way back to the band’s 1967 album Their Satanic Majesties Request. That album is represented through the song ‘2000 Light Years From Home.’ Beggar’s Banquet, Let It Bleed, Sticky Fingers (which was just recently re-issued), Exile on Main Street, It’s Only Rock ‘N Roll, Tattoo You, and Dirty Work are all represented in the show’s set list. The U.S. release of Between The Buttons is represented, too thanks to the inclusion of ‘Ruby Tuesday.’ Simply put the band included songs from a pretty wide swath of its catalogue up to that point in this show’s set list. This is important to note be cause it shows the band had taken into direct consideration the fact that so much time had passed since it had last toured. So those older songs were likely what audiences really wanted to hear since it’s what those audiences knew. It shows a deep respect for the audience. Considering this, it had to have made audiences respect the band even more in turn. That mutual respect between the band and audience ultimately makes the concert’s set list that much more important of an element in the whole of Live at The Tokyo Dome. And together with the band’s stage presence throughout each song, the two elements together show even more why Live at The Tokyo Dome such an important piece of The Rolling Stones’ history.

The Rolling Stones’ stage presence in Live at The Tokyo Dome and the concert’s set list are both of equal importance to the concert’s overall presentation. While both elements are important in their own right to the whole of this recording, they would be of no consequence without mention of the recording’s collective production values, or its audio and video. Audiences must go into this recording understanding that the concert was recorded in 1990. That was well before the advent of high-definition capabilities. That being the case, the audio mix at least proves to be relatively impressive. That is especially considering the size of the Tokyo Dome. Audiences will note in watching the performance just how open the concert hall is inside. It has very high ceilings and is just as open from wall to wall. That means an increased ability of the sound to echo throughout the hall. Luckily, all involved both at the concert and in preparing this recording handled their duties with the utmost precision. The result is a concert that sounds just as good on Blu-ray (and CD) as it did in the original performance if not better. The video quality is just as interesting. While some of the shots are clear others are at the opposite end of that spectrum. More specifically, there are some shots that are not quite in focus despite the best efforts of those behind the cameras. But they are luckily not enough to really ruin the concert’s overall viewing experience. If anything the combination of those shots and the concert’s re-mastered audio serves to show just how far recording technology has come since this concert was recorded. In its own way it actually makes the overall experience of this concert that much more enjoyable. Because it does, it makes the band’s performance that much more engaging and the show’s set list just as impressive. All things considered, Live at The Tokyo Dome shows in the end to be another welcome addition to The Rolling Stones’ ongoing “From The Vault” series.

The Rolling Stones’ Live at The Tokyo Dome is yet another welcome addition to the band’s ongoing “From The Vault” series. The band’s stage presence exhibits a band in general that had not lost a step despite having been off the road for roughly seven years before it embarked on its “Steel Wheels Tour.” The set list shows a certain amount of respect for fans considering that most of the show’s twenty-four-song set list was pulled from the band’s already extensive catalogue of albums at the time. And the recording’s overall production values show just how far recording technology has come since the concert’s original presentation even as impressive as those values are in their own right. One would be remiss to ignore the recording’s companion booklet and double gatefold packaging. The companion booklet adds even more enjoyment to the overall experience as it presents extra tidbits such as the revelation that the band’s stage setup was so big that it took eighty (yes, eighty) trucks to haul it from venue to venue. The crew required to assemble and break down the set was just as expansive, according to Richard Havers’ notes. It’s tough to figure out conversion rates, but the revelation of tickets to the Tokyo Dome show costing 10,000 Yen is just as eye-opening. These are just a couple of interesting extras that are noted in the companion booklet. And while it might be more bulky than the standard multi-disc setup, the double gatefold packaging of the SD Blu-ray/2-CD combo pack actually protects the discs more than that standard slim packaging. Whether for that packaging, the bonuses added by the companion booklet or for any of the centrally noted elements, it can be said of Live at The Tokyo Dome that the recording in whole is, again, one of the most important pieces of the band’s history and one that any Rolling Stones fan will want to have in his or her own music (and Rolling Stones) library. It is available now in stores and online. More information on this and other titles from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online now at:

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ABKCO Announces New Trio Of “Clearly Classic” Re-Issues

Courtesy:  ABKCO

Courtesy: ABKCO

ABKCO has announced that it will release three more classic Rolling Stones records to its “Clearly Classic” vinyl series this year.

ABKCO’s “Clearly Classic” started in 2013.It has added to that series of releases Get Yer Ya-Yas Out!: The Rolling Stones in Concert, 12X5, and Through The Past, Darkly (Big Hits Volume 2).The new re-issues join ABKCO’s previously released Rolling Stones “Clearly Classic” re-issues Beggars Banquet, Let it Bleed, and Hot Rocks:1964 1971.
Get Yer Ya-Yas Out!The Rolling Stones in Concert has the honor of being the first live album by any artist to have reached #1 on the UK charts.The concert on this re-issue was recorded at New York’s Madison Square Garden over the course of November 27thand 28th, 1969 and was the first to feature guitarist Mick Taylor.It is considered the best of the Rolling Stones’ live releases to date.The most notable performance on this recording is the band’s nine-plus minute rendition of ‘Midnight Rambler.’This record can be pre-ordered now online at http://smarturl.it/YaYasLP.
12X5 was the Stones’ second full length U.S. release.This album, released in October 1964, combines the band’s EP Five By Five and its singles ‘It’s All Over Now’ and ‘Time Is On My Side’ as well as their B-sides.The record also features three more tracks that would go on to be included in the Stones’second UK full length album The Rolling Stones No. 2.The upcoming “Clearly Classic” re-issue of this album is based on the original mono mix of the album.It can be pre-ordered now online at http://smarturl.it/12x5LP.
Through The Past, Darkly (Big Hits Volume 2) is the second of The Rolling Stones’ compilation albums.It was originally released in September 1969.The first of the Stones’compilations was titled Big Hits (High Tide and Green Grass).Through The Past, Darkly (Big Hits Volume 2) reached #2 both in the U.S. and UK upon its original release.It includes a number of the Rolling Stones’greatest and most beloved songs including: ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash’,Let’s Spend the Night Together’ and ‘Honky Tonk Woman.’Fans will appreciate that even in its re-issue, ABKCO has maintained the original album’s octagonal packaging.Inside the packaging, audiences will find a poem penned by Brian Jones who would pass away only two months before the original release of this album.Jones’ poem is below.This re-issue can be pre-ordered now online at http://smarturl.it/TTPDVinyl.
When this you see, remember me,
and bear me in your mind.
Let all the world say what they may,
speak of me as you find.
The track listing for each of the three upcoming “Clearly Classic” Rolling Stones re-issues is listed below.
Track Listings:
Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out! The Rolling Stones in Concert
Side 1
Jumpin’ Jack Flash
Stray Cat Blues
Love in Vain
Midnight Rambler
Side 2
Sympathy For the Devil
Live With Me
Little Queenie
Honky Tonk Women
Street Fighting Man
12 X 5
Side 1
Around and Around
Confessin’ the Blues
Empty Heart
Time Is on My Side
Good Times, Bad Times
It’s All Over Now
Side 2
2120 South Michigan Avenue
Under the Boardwalk
Grown Up Wrong
If You Need Me
Susie Q
Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2)
Side 1
Ruby Tuesday
She’s A Rainbow
Jumpin’ Jack Flash
Mother’s Little Helper
Let’s Spend the Night Together
Side 2
Honky Tonk Women
2000 Light Years from Home
Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing In The Shadow?
Street Fighting Man

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Sweet Summer Sun Is A Sweet Treat For Any Rolling Stones Fan

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

Eagle Rock Entertainment has done it yet again.  Somehow some way, Eagle Rock Entertainment has raised the bar yet again for live recordings.  Eagle Rock has raised the bar yet again with its new live Rolling Stones recording, Sweet Summer Sun: Hyde Park Live.  This concert recording is one for the ages.  And it’s one for viewers of all ages.  As viewers will see, the audience in attendance numbered more than one hundred thousand, according to the notes in the recording’s bonus booklet.  That hundred thousand plus number was comprised of fans from every background and every age.  This is a big statement, and it’s just one part of what makes this recording an absolute must have for any Rolling Stones fan.  The show’s cinematography has been a point of contention among viewers.  The reality of the cinematography is that there is nothing wrong with this aspect at all.  As a matter of fact, it is another part of the whole that makes this presentation such a joy to watch.  The bonus booklet included with the recording is the final touch to the package.  It is an excellent companion to the video presentation, as audiences will see in watching what is a concert film in every sense.  It provides an in-depth backstory on the band’s history at Hyde Park, as well as highlights of the show contained in the current recording.  Together with the cinematography and the concert itself, it makes for one of the best live concert recordings overall in a very long time.

The Rolling Stones’ Hyde Park performance from its “50 and Counting” tour is one for the ages and one for all ages.  Viewers that purchase this recording will see that among the one hundred thousand plus in attendance were concert goers of all ages.  There were people in their forties, fifties, and potentially older.  There were people in their twenties and thirties, too.  At one point, viewers will even see a young man that could not have been more than perhaps thirteen years old.  How many bands today can command an audience of over one hundred thousand?  How many can say that they command an audiences of such size and of such a wide age range at the same time?  This speaks loudly to just how popular and respected Mick Jagger and company are, even half a century after they first broke through and hit it big.  The songs and the performance of the band only make this hit even harder.  The audience in attendance was treated to rather wide array of songs from throughout the band’s career, starting fittingly with “Start Me Up.”  “Honky Tonk Women”, “Midnight Rambler”, and “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” are all there too along with plenty more songs to which even home audiences will find themselves ancing and singing.  The ironic thing of this show is that the band closes out the main concert feature with a performance of “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.”  It’s pretty obvious that the band got plenty of satisfaction, as did the audience in attendance.  The same can be said of those that watch the concert both on DVD and Blu-ray.

The band’s performance and the vast size and age range of the audience at the Stones’ Hyde Park concert is in itself a big statement.  Making that statement even bolder is the concert’s cinematography.  There are those that have criticized this recording for its cinematography.  The biggest complaints are that the shots are too quick and that there aren’t enough close up shots of the band.  But those that complain obviously haven’t taken the full extent of the cinematography into account.  It’s that same cinematography that captures the full immensity of the audience in attendance.  The aerial angles used throughout the concert show the contrast of that massive crowd against the band on stage.  Those shots taken from behind the band are just as powerful.  They drive home the sheer size of the audience.  It makes even more incredible the fact that the band could command such an immense audience.  And then there are the “crowd shots.”  These shots are taken more from the angle of the crowd.  The shots taken from higher up show the massive size of the stage setup.  The wider the angle of those shots, the more it hits home to viewers just how large the stage set really was.

The cinematography and the overall immensity of the show truly make Sweet Summer Sun: Hyde Park Live a once in a lifetime concert in every sense of the term.  There’s still something else to consider that puts this latest live recording over the top.  That last aspect is the recording’s bonus booklet.  The booklet that comes with the recording gives viewers an in-depth look at the band’s history at Hyde Park.  It includes a full rundown of the concert contained on the new presentation’s disc.  That introduction helps to set up the recording in question.  There is also a handful of pictures peppered throughout the booklet that were taken during the newer of the band’s Hyde Park performances.  The history and the pictures make the booklet an invaluable addition to the overall presentation of this new release.  It is one more part of the whole that makes this release an absolute must have for any Rolling Stones fan.  The DVD, Blu-ray, and CD presentation of Sweet Summer Sun: Hyde Park Live are all available now in stores and online.  More information on this and other releases from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online at http://www.eaglerockent.com and http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

New Vinyl Re-Issues Three More Reasons To Love The Stones

Courtesy:  ABKCO

Courtesy: ABKCO

The Rolling Stones have been celebrating a mark that very few bands and artists can claim.  The British blues rock based band has been celebrating half a century together this year.  As part of the ongoing celebration, a number of the band’s works have been reissued in recent months.  Among them have been the likes of Charlie is my Darling and a new greatest hits compilation (at least the third hits compilation from the band).  Earlier this summer, three more Stones works were re-issued in celebration of the band’s anniversary.  Those albums were Let It Bleed, Hot Rocks 1964 – 1971, and Beggar’s Banquet.  The albums in question weren’t re-issued on CD.  Rather, they were re-issued on vinyl, as a gift to all of the band’s long-time fans.  Sure, it’s nice to have the technology that is available today for music.  But it’s just as wonderful to have these classic releases re-issued on vinyl.

All three re-issues are such a joy first and foremost because of the sound quality on each set’s transfer.  Many people listen to vinyls because of the static on the records.  While the audio has been cleaned up on these re-issues, there’s still a certain feeling of hearing the original masters on a vinyl yet crystal clear.  It appeases both younger audiences and those with more knowledge of the band’s catalogue.  Hot Rocks 1964 – 1971 is presented in a double gatefold packaging.  Instead of the old school dark vinyl, this set’s discs are presented in clear 180 gram vinyl, just as with the other two vinyl re-issues of Beggar’s Banquet and Let It Bleed.  Both discs are safely packed inside their own sleeve so as to protect them just as with old any old school vinyl.  Inside the double-gatefold packaging, fans will find a collage of classic Rolling Stones photos complete with liner notes. This adds even more to the feeling of nostalgia that will be felt from simply holding the clear vinyl discs.

Courtesy:  ABKCO

Courtesy: ABKCO

The second of the new vinyl re-issues from ABKCO and the Rolling Stones, Let It Bleed is one of the greatest of the greatest albums released from Mick and the gang.  This vinyl is presented just as the original album was presented.  It comes complete with hits such as ‘Gimme Shelter’, ‘Midnight Rambler’ and what is one of the band’s biggest hits of all time, ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ among many other hits.  This album was re-issued on 180-gram clear vinyl just as with Hot Rocks 1964 – 1971.  It should be noted here that the third in the set, Beggar’s Banquet was also released on 180-gram clear vinyl.  It was all part of ABKCO’s clear vinyl project.  These releases are just part of the larger program by ABKCO to release a number of artists’ classic albums on clear vinyl.  It is a wise marketing move in that it is much more appealing to the eye than old school vinyls.  And again, with the advances in technology, the audio is crystal clear.  That combined with the original artwork gives fans the best of both worlds yet again. 

Much the same already noted of Hot Rocks 1964 – 1971 and Let it Bleed can be noted of Beggar’s Banquet, too.  It would be redundant to bring about the same notes one more time that have already been stated.  What can be said in closing about not just Beggar’s Banquet, but of all three re-issues in this set is that this trio of albums from ABKCO and The Rolling Stones make a wonderful gift to fans from what is one of the greatest bands in the history of rock music.  As impressive as all three vinyl re-issues turn out to be, one can only wonder if ABKCO and the Rolling Stones will re-issue any other of the band’s classic LPs as it winds down its fiftieth anniversary, or beyond.  While fans wait for an answer to that question, audiences have quite a way to pass the wait with these records.  And audiences with more knowledge of the Stones’ history have quite the start on a trip down memory lane.  All three vinyl re-issues are available in stores and online now.  All three records can be ordered online direct from the ABKCO store at http://www.abkco.com/index.php/store/.

Courtesy:  ABKCO

Courtesy: ABKCO

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Fans Get Quite An Anniversary Gift From The Rolling Stones In New Documentary

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Records/Eagle Vision

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Records/Eagle Vision

The latest release in the ongoing celebration of The Rolling Stones’ 50th anniversary is another welcome addition to the library of any fan of this legendary veteran rock act.  The new DVD and Blu-ray release covers the band’s formative years during the 1960s and 70s.  There are those that have criticized this new release, comparing it to the likes of The Beatles’ Anthology.  But let’s be realistic, considering the price of that set and the price of the Stones’ previous box set, Charlie is my Darling, this latest release is just as good.  Would it be nice to see the importance of the band throughout its care, considering that the world is celebrating its 50th anniversary?  Yes, it would.  And hopefully Eagle Rock will follow up this release with one that follows the second half of the band’s storied career.  But in the meantime, this volume will do just fine.

Crossfire Hurricane is such an impressive work because it in fact does cover a specific portion of the band’s career.  It covered the band’s career during what was one of the most turbulent times in the modern history of the world.  Mick, Charlie, Keith, and the late Brian Jones are all presented here in their highs (both metaphorically and literally) and their lows.  From dealing with public perception versus the perfectly proper “Fab Four” to becoming the voice of a disenchanted youth to dealing with the loss of a brother, it’s all here.  Audiences see the band’s meteoric rise to fame, and hear direct from the fans and the band itself what made the band so important even in its infancy.    Viewers even get to hear what the band had to say about working with one another, too, which leads to another positive in the presentation.

Audiences get so much out of the history presented behind the band in Crossfire Hurricane.  Directly related to the band’s history is the video footage presented in this release.  Fans that bought the recently released DVD, Blu-ray or complete box set presentation of Charlie is my Darling will recognize some of the footage included in this presentation.  There is far more footage included here that wasn’t included in that presented in that set, too.  Together, the final product will take fans of all ages back in time to the band’s younger days.  While Mick’s look hasn’t changed much since the band’s initial performances, drummer Charlie Watts is almost unrecognizable.  Parents should be warned that among the footage, there is some nudity throughout the expertly re-mastered footage.  So parents who perhaps want to introduce their kids to one of rock’s greatest bands should take this into note before watching it with younger viewers in the room.  That aside, it is still an impressive look back on what are some of the most important years in the history of The Rolling Stones.

If the history lesson on The Rolling Stones’ early years isn’t enough for viewers, then maybe the bonus live performances included will entertain audiences.  After all, Eagle Rock continuously proves itself to be a leader among companies putting out live releases.  Just as the footage compiled for the documentary will take viewers on a nostalgic trip down memory lane, so will the bonus live performances.  The earliest of the performances included in this release date as far back as 1964.  Considering that nearly half a century has passed since these performances were recorded, the footage has stood the test of time quite well.  Both the audio and video sound quite impressive.  They sound just as good as any of today’s recordings.  As good as they sound and as much of a resurgence as vinyl has had today, it would be even more amazing for nostalgia’s sake to see Eagle Rock release those performances on a complete vinyl release, too.

So much more could be noted of this new release.  But it goes without saying that as already noted, it is one more impressive way for fans to celebrate the career of a band that is simply put, rock royalty.  Who knows, maybe Eagle Rock will even follow up this presentation with another celebration of the band’s career with a feature on the second half of the band’s career.  Fans can be the first to find out when they “Like” the Eagle Rock Entertainment Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt.  The DVD and Blu-ray are both available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct via the Eagle Rock Entertainment website at http://www.eagle-rock.com.

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New Stones Vinyl Re-Issue An Excellent Addition To Band’s Anniversary Celebration

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision/Eagle Records

On July 18th, 1978, The Rolling Stones made a stop at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth, Texas as part of its tour in support of its album, Some Girls.  Over three decades have passed since that iconic performance.  Last year, Eagle Rock Entertainment, Eagle Vision, and Eagle Records released that performance on CD, DVD and Blu-ray.  Now, the companies have followed up the success of those releases with a double disc vinyl/DVD combo pack for true hardcore Stones fans.  This new set includes the entire performance of that show on two double sided vinyl discs along with a full length performance of the show on DVD.  It goes without saying that this is another outstanding performance from an outstanding band that helps to celebrate the band’s fiftieth anniversary.

The first thing that will hit audiences in taking in this performance is the quality of the recording.  Nearly thirty-five years have passed since this performance was originally recorded.  But as evidenced both on the DVD and the vinyl release, the recording has stood the test of time.  The audio portion on the vinyl will impress any audiophile.  The companion DVD is just as impressive.  Considering the technology that was available in 1978, the quality of the video footage is outstanding.  It’s obvious painstaking efforts were taken to preserve this concert.  And those responsible for maintaining and restoring it for its latest release are to be commended for their efforts.  Those efforts paid off in a large way.  It’s great to be able to see the band’s performance not just from the stage, but also from the vantage point of the audience.  The wide shots of the show from the back of the auditorium give an even more incredible view of the audience numbers and the audience’s reaction to the band from one song to the next.  There’s no let up from either the band or its fans throughout the concert.

The audio and video go a long way towards making Some Girls Live in Texas ’78 enjoyable for any Rolling Stones fan.  They’re just part of the overall experience, though.  The set list has its own hand in the success of this release.  Presented here are standout performance of hits including:  ‘Star Star’, ‘Honky Tonk Women’, ‘Beast of Burden’, ‘Brown Sugar’, and ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash.’  Long time audiences that haven’t gotten to see last year’s DVD and BD release of this show will be taken aback by the band’s you and energy here.  There’s hardly a wrinkle to be seen on any of the band members.  Though, Mick Jagger has that signature swagger that has made him such a rock icon throughout the Stones’ career together.  And the guitar solos courtesy of Keith Richards and Ron Wood will get even the newest Stones’ fans moving in their own living rooms, bedrooms, etc.  Drummer Charlie Watts keeps the whole band together behind his kit, adding his own flair where necessary, too.  The band’s performance and the equally impressive recording come together to make a release that is a fitting addition to any Stones’ fan’s celebration of the band’s anniversary.  Some Girls Live in Texas ’78 is available now in stores and online.  It can be ordered online at http://www.eagle-rock.com

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Eagle Rock sets the bar again with Muddy Waters, Rolling Stones archived live show

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

Rock and roll shares a very special relationship with the blues.  If not for the blues, there would likely be no rock and roll.  Any music historian would agree with that sentiment.  Now, thanks to the good people at Eagle Rock Entertainment and Eagle Vision, music lovers everywhere get to experience what is arguably one of the greatest moments in the history of both genres in the new DVD and DVD?CD release of “Muddy Waters & The Rolling Stones Live at the Checkerboard Lounge.”

Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, Junior Wells, Lefty Bizz and the Rolling Stones all came together in an impromptu show at the famed Checkerboard Club on November 22nd, 1981.  The weather outside may have been cold.  But as it was documented in this new release, the energy of this one off mega show warmed the house and everyone in attendance.  The vibe is set from the very first notes of the piano led, ‘Sweet Little Angel.’  Pianist Lovie Lee shines not only on the keys, but vocally, too.  His talent shows through on ‘Flip Flop and Fly’, as well.  Muddy keeps the positive vibe set by Lee coming when he enters on ‘You Don’t Have to Go.’  And his chops on the guitar are unlike anything that any other guitarist did then or does today.   Things really get moving when Muddy coaxes Mick Jagger and his band mates Keith Richards and Ron Wood to come up and join in.  This is just one of many impromptu moments that make this show such fun.  Audiences will thrill at seeing Mick Jagger in his trademark “Chicken man” stance, hands on his hips, head stuck out.  He, Wood, and Richards show their love and respect for the blues while they play.  It’s proof of what makes the Rolling Stones one of the world’s most beloved bands.

Even when Muddy and Mick take a break, the energy is maintained by fellow bluesmen Buddy Guy, Junior Wells and Lefty Dizz.  The trio take over on ‘Got My Mojo Workin’ ‘, ‘Next Time You See Me’ and ‘One Eyed Woman’ before Muddy comes back up on ‘Clouds in My Heart.’

Audiences get one amazing show from the vault in this newly released concert.  It’s only made that much better with the addition of an audio portion in the bonus CD included in the double disc DVD/CD set.  This inclusion will allow audiences to listen to the show anywhere they go.  The audio transfer from the master tapes was seamless.  In short, the experience is just as grand on CD as it is on DVD.  All involved in bringing this show back to life on CD are to be commended.  The same should be said of those who dusted off the original video tapes of the show, and brought it back to life for DVD presentation.

Eagle Rock Entertainment and Eagle Vision have once more set the bar for live recordings with this latest release.  And while Muddy Waters and the Rolling Stones take top billing, it’s obvious that this performance is less about either one, and more about celebrating the power of music.  It joined two members of the same musical family for one special night.  What’s more it has given eagle Rock and Eagle Vision one more of the year’s very best live recordings. 

The single disc DVD and double disc DVD/CD set are both available in stores and online now.  Fans can order it online at http://www.eagle-rock.com.  There will also be a triple disc DVD/ 2-LP Vinyl release on September 11th

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