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Speak a Volcano: Return to Electric Guitar

18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

After 30 years of a splendid career and exploring a variety of styles, Al Di Meola still ranks among the most popular guitar-masters of jazz and jazz-rock. Here, on his first 'electric' DVD, Di Meola shows up with 'Speak A Volcano' in Leverkusen in Novem


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Al Di Meola
  • Directors: Peter Sommer
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: inakustik
  • DVD Release Date: October 30, 2007
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000UX6O0W
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,231 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By red herring on December 20, 2007
I'm not going to belabor the opinion I've expressed in my reviews of Al's other work here, that his fans need to allow him to grow as an artist and understand that you can't play Elegant Gypsy forever, but if that's what you want I would submit that you'd still be very happy with at least 80% of what this disc contains. I believe his versatility is what makes Al so unique, both as an instrumentalist and composer/arranger--he can obviously still rip it better than anybody on pure electric, but the electric/acoustic also featured in this concert creates sonic nuances that need to be seen to be believed. Whatever you think of what Al's been doing the last 15 years, please do yourself a favor and watch this concert--maybe you'll grow as a listener as well.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Harding VINE VOICE on December 20, 2007
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Any Al DiMeola show is a treat. I've seen his shows a half dozen times at various points in his career and I've never left disappointed except that the shows eventually ended. I also own all his other DVDs and was excited to learn that he was going electric on this one. Well, not quite. Speak a Volcano is more like an acoustic sandwich with some great electric fireworks at both ends but with a tasty slice of acoustic wizardry in the middle. I know that annoys some fans who were hoping for the glories of Elegant Gypsy, Casino, and Electric Rendezvous all rolled into one, but the fact is that DiMeola long ago left those days in the past.
The DVD leans heavily on his work of the last two decades with only a slight nod to the glory days of the seventies. Over the course of his career, DiMeola has perfected an otherworldly and almost mystical sound. Whenever you hear him play, you can just kick back and let your mind soar with the music. He has also long indulged his obsession with the music of the late nouveau tango master Astor Piazzolla to whom he pays much homage once again on this DVD.
I've watched Speak A Volcano several times since I received it and find something more to like each time. The light show is great and the shots of DiMeola's seemingly effortless guitar pyrotechnics are thrilling. He is backed by a competent and well-rehearsed band. Long-time fixture, percussionist Gumbi Ortiz, seems almost an extension of DiMeola's talent. The interplay between the two is a joy to behold.
I don't really have any favorites, maybe Milonga del Angel (Milonga misspelled as two words on the DVD housing), Tangata, and the fiery Senor Mouse from way back in his Casino days are the most memorable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Manoj Joshi on July 1, 2009
Once again, Al shows an excellent command over the guitar. Over the years, I have seen his skills and artistic variance have grown. He has increasingly collaborative with diverse musicians around the world, and put his heart on creating the finest compositions.

Among the DVD products he has released so far, this is by far the best in terms of the sound and camera work. His guitar still sounds a bit softer compared to the drums that are on higher volume. I think the pianist has done a great job on this album.

Di Meola takes the stage backed by a foursome of equally impressive musicians; Mario Parmisano (keyboards), Joel Taylor (drums), Mike Pope (bass), and his longtime companion Gumbi Ortiz on percussion.

I highly recommend buying this DVD. You will be glad, and proud you owned it. And you will have a good reason to play it frequently.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Charles W. Smoyer on November 5, 2008
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I first saw Al DiMiola serveral years ago in an relatively small venue, I recently saw him with Return to Forever. He his, to me, a magnificent prefomer who is more dynamic alone than as part of a part of a group. His group that is with him on this DVD are all of the highest standard; as they would have to be to accompany a virtuoso. If you like Al Dimiola, you will love this DVD, if you ever wanted to see him play, you will love this DVD and the extras at the end when he is interviewed. I am very happy with this product.
Wes S.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth Washington on January 24, 2009
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This is an awesome DVD. I would have given it a 5 but I attended the concert live in Albuquerque and sat in row 1 so my expectations were a bit inflated. Nonetheless he brought back great memories of that night where I saw him live. If you're a Dimeola fan and don't have this DVD, you should add it to your collection without hesitation.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful By herb on December 1, 2007
Yes it is great to see him back on electric. The image quality is stunning, really incredible. The camera angles are great on Dimeola (Patient and revealing) but a little weird on some of the band. There are no shots that reveal the keys of the keyboardist and or what type of boards he uses. (The angle is kind of from below) This may not be important to most people but I would have liked a little bit more creativity on the shot selection and angles. Few revealing shots of the bassist and percussionist. There are some good shots of the drummer. (especially the overhead) Wish they had that on the keys! It's weird because there are no guitar amps visible and I wanted to see what amp he had. He's playing a beautiful PRS. The drum set is behind glass which is a little weird but... Clearly this was an effort to get the best sound rather than an approximation of an actual live show.

This is the best Dimeola DVD thus far. His guitar sound is nice but polished..gone are the intense Les Paul and raw amp sounds of his "Wizard" days. Speaking of that how can he not play the "Wizard?".
My only gripe is that he plays too much acoustic when it's billed as the return to the electric. We have had years of hearing and seeing what he can do on the acoustic. Then he also breaks out the classical guitar too..almost feels like he is saying "look what I can do!" We all know he's great and his right hand technique is stunning. I just think the acoustic ruins the pacing of the presentation and is too reminicent of the other dvd's. The bonus material is very good with a lenghty & detailed interview and even some playing tips which are pretty cool. This guy has one of the strongest right hands in the business.
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What is the track list
i know, right !!! that pisses me off so much that no one will say what songs are on the damn thing ! thats like the most important part !
Jan 6, 2009 by John Handley |  See all 2 posts
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