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Abba - In Concert 1979
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I've been professionally involved in the concert business for three decades, I've seen everyone pretty much, and though my personal tastes run more towards The Beatles, The Cramps and Garbage, I rank ABBA as one of the best live bands I've EVER seen on a stage. The vocals were spot on, the band rocked and were very tight, the energy level was through the roof. The group, especially Frida and Agnetha, were very lively, generous and vivacious with the audience, and the songs were just great. Frankly, it was an incredible, indescribable rush to see them live, especially if you'd waited five years for it.
For ages ABBA have been a guilty pleasure for those of us supposedly hip rockers, but unless you're a frigid snob you'll have to admit upon viewing this show that ABBA weren't a corny plastic disco machine - they absolutely delivered the goods. A totally legitimate act with nothing to apologize for. What's also great is that ABBA were based not just on unforgettable hook-laden songs and astounding voices, but there was a genuinely warm and mature sexuality exuding from that stage. Agnetha and Frida were women, not little girls.Read more ›
What is this DVD? It is a re-release of a documentary film done about the group's 1979 tour of the US and UK. When reviewing it, you must take it for what it is. It was done before even vcr's. The documentary producers didn't film every minute of the concerts from five different cameras. They captured what they wanted to make a compelling documentary. And they succeeded wonderfully. It is important, though, to remember that 1979 music video style was very different than today. The filmmakers could never have dreamed of 5.1 audio...they produced for 2" mono speaker in the average 1980 tv set.
The first third or so shows the group traveling, hanging out, eating meals, and warming up before a show. Abba songs are the soundtrack, but they are not shown as full concert pieces. The behind the scenes part is great watching of the late 70's lifestyle. The rest of the disk is concert footage, and although it would have been nice to have two hours of a full concert, history has left us with about 7 or 8 songs. Extras include additional songs captured on film but not included in the original documentary.Read more ›
As my review title states, they did a great job with the picture quality, but really screwed up badly with the sound. It's a little less noticeable in mono, but in stereo it is very irritating. It does indeed sound like someone is constantly fooling around with the volume control. The original VHS sound was fine. How they screwed up the sound and released it this way,
is beyond my comprehension. I would've given this DVD 3 1/2 stars if it wasn't for the poor sound quality. Hopefully, one day they will re-release this with the audio problem fixed.
And yes, it is not a "complete" concert. You only get about half the songs ABBA performed onstage during this tour. The first 30 minutes of the DVD in mainly a lot of behind-the-scenes type stuff with a few snippets of concert footage. It is not until the get around to their performance at Wembley do you get to the true concert footage, but as stated before, it's only about half the show.
Fans who recommend "ABBA: The Movie" over this, forget that it too also does not show a complete concert either. It also has songs cut off, and even during some of the complete songs, it often cuts away from the stage performance to the idiotic subplot of the dj trying to get and interview with ABBA.
What is so frustrating is that is that we know complete concerts of ABBA were filmed for both of these, but the extra footage is problem long gone or lost in a vast vault somewhere. I doubt if we will ever see a complete ABBA concert on DVD.
I'm just happy that what little there is of ABBA in concert is available on this DVD and ABBA - The Movie (which hopefully will be released on DVD soon). They are both enjoyable despite their flaws and are "must-haves" for any true ABBA fan.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
would like to have seen more than one venue. DVD was OK as far as it went. would have liked more info on each member of the group.Published 9 days ago by R. J. Schwieterman
Not bad for a supposed In Concert dvd. My partner got a thrill out seeing them again.Published 13 days ago by Steven Goetz
Alfio never disappoints his audience, great voice, great entertainerPublished 2 months ago by LYDIA SALZANO
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