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4.0 out of 5 stars
Diary of a Mad Band (Deluxe CD + DVD)
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2010
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Well after 4 years, lol, "Diary Of A Mad Band" finally came out. This double cd/dvd combo has a ton of live stuff from England and the rest of Europe during the year of VI(2006).

I was hoping Down's complete performance at Download Festival 2006 would be on there but, unfortunately, "Bury Me In Smoke" is the only one. You'll get some rare live songs like "The Seed", "Temptation's Wings", and "There's Something On My Side", which is awesome. There's a total of 17 live vids on the dvd. There's also about 10 minutes of shananigans showing the band goofing off:)

NEGATIVES
I'll offend some people by saying this but Phil is definitely not on in these live recordings. It's a shame too because the music is great. He looks/sounds pretty wasted most of the time. You'll hear some of Phil's drunk ramblings in between songs unfortunately. The video quality is nothing special either. Some of the angles remind me of a bootleg. There's also couple of filler tracks I could have lived without: "Lies" and "Learn From This Mistake". I'd rather have some newer live material like "Nothing In Return", "Beneath The Tides", "Mourn" and "On March The Saints" from "Over The Under". But since this is pre-"Over The Under", what can ya do?

For the cheap price, this is definitely a steal. It's great to hear/see Down live besides the bootlegs I have. So Down fans, support your band!

THE BEST LIVE SHOW ON DVD OF DOWN IMO IS DALLAS 9-21-95. Audio/Video A+. Check it out on youtube.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I was super excited about getting this. However, I was kind of disappointed upon getting this.

On the cd, Phil is hard to listen to. Sure, with this kind of music, you're bound to have a few rough notes. But it's bad, IMO. He's not on point with the vocals. He is way off key at times, and other times he's close enough (like some of the stuff from NOLA, where the rough/growl is ok). Jail is especially bad, it's hard to listen to. Perhaps this was during Phil's drug/alcohol abuse period; it certainly sounds like it. He sounded much better on the the studio albums. The music is good, but at times, the guitars are toney-thin. Otherwise, the music is ok.

On the DVD, the sound is a little better, even some of Phil's vocals. However, you get three different video clips during one song. I had hoped that it would be the song at one specific show. Turns out it's not. Still cool to see. I haven't seen the shenanigans part yet.

Don't get me wrong, I love that they FINALLY released it. I love their music, and I'd go to see them when they came to town (or close enough). But is this their best effort? Did they not have better shows to put forth? I wish they had waited and added some Down III stuff, or did some post Phil rehab shows where he actually puts more effort in to singing the vocals.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon October 6, 2010
Format: Audio CD
A first thought I had after listening to this was, does it deserve five stars for what it is, or four for what it isn't? It does seem strange that a few years after their last studio album, they put out a live album from 2006, so obviously you won't hear anything from Down III. Despite having no recent or new material, any Down fan would agree that live Down is awesome. So I'll settle in the middle at four-and-a-half, plus Phil's voice is subpar at times. I think he sounds adequate-to-great on most of the songs, but you get occasional moments like Jail, where he's not so good. In between songs, you get trademark Anselmo goofiness and profanity, which is always amusing. Anyway, listening to old Down songs takes me back in a good way, and the band sounds great on this. Since they chose not to release a definitive live album, with more recent performances mixed in, I'm glad they did a CD/DVD combo, so that you at least get both audio and video of the songs. I'm sure most Down fans will highly enjoy Diary of a Mad Band.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on October 11, 2010
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
This CD was almost insulting, I've been a huge fan of Down since the beginning and this album definitely doesn't cut it. I've read reviews saying "hard core Down fans will love this"...completely untrue. I'm a hard core Down fan, therefore I'm aware that Down is capable of so much more. Phil Anselmo is the best heavy music vocalist...period. But, on this album his vocals weren't just "a little off", it was painful to listen to. The other instruments where "OK" at best. I can honestly say Down is my favorite band, but I would truly be embarrassed to loan this CD to someone who had never heard them and say, "This is my favorite band." Waste of money in my opinion, buy their other three albums and hear the great music they're capable of making.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I consider myself to be a pretty big down fan, and this thing isn't really anything of value. Down's live performance doesn't really translate well to the tv screen, and the video production is not good. Pepper said they were going for an old feel, but it comes across as low budget. The backstage stuff is really what I wanted to see, but the "Tyrades and shenanigans" is very short, and is mostly just phil laying on a couch rambling on about stuff already seen in numerous interviews. For the amount of time that they've been talking about this dvd, and now to see the end result is dissapointing. Save yourself the money, and watch some interviews with the band on youtube, there is more entertainment value in it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 9, 2010
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
I don't often write reviews on here, it's not really my forte.

The content of this collection is superb as is expected, the performances are tight and the music rocks, even though Phil isn't in top form.

This isn't so much a review, as it is my opportunity to ask this question:

Why must this live material be so compressed? When is the industry going to grow out of this trend of bastardizing recordings by totally squashing them, and furthermore, why is it necessary on live material?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 12, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Finally a Down live album and DVD! The DVD is great and is the real treat here. The audio dics are good too. Sure there are flaws, but the band was pretty clear that this was a warts and all documentary of the first tour after a long hiatus. If you love really love DOWN you should be stoked. BURY ME IN SMOKE!

-Okay so I did the review before listening to "Jail". I took off one star (4 instead of 5) because Phil is reallly bad on that one. Lol!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format: Audio CD
I love just about everything Down, and having seen them live before, can honestly say that they are one of the few bands who manage to transfer the energy and power that populates their studio releases to the stage without fail. "Diary of a Mad band" doesn't always display that however, as this set captures the band during their 2006 pre-"Over the Under" European tour. The songs you'd expect to hear are here, such as "Lifer", "Losing All", "Ghosts Along the Mississippi", and "Stone the Crow", but the set list isn't the flaw here. Vocalist Phil Anselmo's voice manages to go from booming one minute to sounding terrible the next. It is obvious during some of Phil's on-stage ramblings that he's a little inebriated, and that all the years of booze, smokes, and drugs may have caught up with his voice. It's sad really, considering that it was his work with Down that really showed-off how talented a singer Phil could be, but other than his failing voice, the band itself sounds great. The included DVD features some cool footage of the band performing, as well as some brief snippets of them fooling around as well. All in all, "Diary of a Mad Band" isn't a bad live album if you can get over what's happened to Phil's voice, and a worthwhile endeavor for die hard fans of the band.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 7, 2010
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
I really wish I could write a better review but I can't. The live CD is horribly mixed and Phil just sounds terrible. There's not much else to say about it. Hardcore Down fans will enjoy it though.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 7, 2010
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
ok the good part is it's a Down DVD and it's about time. there are alot of great songs on here I wish there was more from te 1st CD but it's still cool to have some live concert footage. I've seen Down live a few times and the last show I saw they were great everything sounded perfect and Phil was on point with the vocals. ok now for the bad, the live cd's are ok but not the best sound quality. the dvd could have been a better mix of songs and I think everyone is tired of hearing phil yell at the fans for not moving around enough like on "bury me in smoke" my favorite song and he ruins it with his rantings no one cares dude just sing. and i wish whoever was filming this with the hand held camera would have cleaned the lens you see all the dirt lol but you can tell when it's a handheld shot. not all of it is handheld just a few shots here and there otherwise it's shot well, but all that being said I'm just knit picking in the end it's great to have a Down DVD so if you're a real fan buy it you will def dig it.
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