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The Velvet Underground - Velvet Redux: Live MCMXCIII

3.9 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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(Jan 24, 2006)
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Editorial Reviews

The Velvet Underground decided to call it quits in 1970, and the last thing anyone expected was to hear from them again. When the Velvets announced plans for a reunion tour in Europe, opening for U2 on select dates there, expectations of a U.S. tour rose to a fever pitch. Tragically the Velvets broke up once again before reaching the states. The Velvet Underground reunion may never have reached America, but as live DVDs go, Live MCMXCIII stands as a fitting tribute to both Morrison and the legacy of The Velvet Underground.

Track Listings:
Venus in Furs
White Light/White Heat
Beginning to See the Light
Some Kinda Love
Femme Fatale
Hey Mr. Rain
I'm Sticking With You
I Heard Her Call My Name
I'll Be Your Mirror
Rock N'Roll
Sweet Jane
I'm Waiting for the Man
Heroin
Pale Blue Eyes
Coyote


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: The Velvet Underground
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (PCM)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Strat. Mkt.
  • DVD Release Date: January 24, 2006
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000765IAO
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,937 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

It's hard to figure out the correct way to view this video document. The Velvet Underground were so far ahead of their times and subsequently so influential that I feel it does them a disservice to view this concert recording as a reunion of a band that has ceased to exist 35 years ago. Then again, how good are you at reading Roman Numerals? If you know the system, then you know that this footage is taken from a reunion tour that occurred over a decade ago, in 1993. So, already we have a conundrum; it's a 10-year old reunion show of a band that still retains a strong foothold on the sound of modern music. Therefore, the show featured in MCMXCVIII is contemporary in one (or more) sense(s), and obsolete in another.

The first thing that I sensed while watching the first few songs unfold is the lack of rapport between the four members. Lou Reed, John Cale, Sterling Morrison and Moe Tucker don't interact much, and this makes it hard to shrug off the impression that these folks just don't like playing together all that much. Perhaps by design, this adds tension to the proceedings, which is an essential ingredient of the Velvet Underground's music, and probably one significant reason why their music retains its relevance. Regardless of impressions, the fact is that the band sounds really GOOD throughout this show. Lou Reed's deadpan vocals never strain (of course they don't), and his guitar playing continually manages to convey control and power, despite some technical ineptitude. With his multi-instrumental abilities, strong vocals, and engaging stage presence, John Cale brings panache to the proceedings, covering all bases without any sign of strain.
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1 Comment 29 of 35 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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This is pretty much a straight from VHS adaptation of the VU's 1993 reunion show. I don't know if video footage exists of the rest of the show (The audio does. See the double CD version), but in an age where some of us get the DVD version strictly for the bonus material, I feel gypped as I imagine many others do, if we didn't already what with John and Lou not being able to keep it together to get the show to America, esp. since Sterling died not long thereafter. Give us some commentary from John, Mo or Lou or even Sterling's widow Martha.

The camera spends most of its time on Lou and John, ignoring Dr. Morrison and Mo, who were just as much contributors to the Velvets' sound as Lou's voice/songwriting and John's sinewave drone on the viola. I had a bit of a problem with that. No one plays/played drums like Mo Tucker and Sterling and Lou both did great guitar lines on the VU's songs.

If you are a fan of the Velvets, yeah, you need this. You probably already had it in VHS form and are just updating your library. Still, it's hard not to feel that, like the Velvets themselves in their short lifetime, the disc doesn't really get its due.

Signed

epsteinsmutha
Comment 8 of 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Let's look at it this way: the adulation they got after 1985's VU, paved the way for this concert series to occur and for the box set to enlighten a whole new generation of fans in the 1990's. Lou Reed is one of my heroes. As a writer, he spoke to the darkest shadows in my inner-self. As a twenty something in the early 1980's, Lou's voice spoke to the phase I was going through in learning how to see the light. This is a mature performance, though somewhat pedestrian; it is still stellar. Great talent doesn't just die it sweetens like a fine wine. They will never be the way they were in the 1960's, no one can sustain youth, but they can emulate it foor a shining moment....this is one of those times. Enjoy!
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Verified Purchase
This is absolutely TIMELESS music, and a stunning musical and performance document. Five stars. I have cherished this on VHS and CD for the 10 years+ its been available, and can't wait to get my hands, eyes and ears on the DVD. I was also unbelievably lucky to be in the Netherlands at the time, and to have seen this show in Rotterdam. The music and performances are phenomenally powerful. This IS the Velvet Underground, but each player has 30+ years of life and musicianship under his or her belt since the Velvets broke up, and it shows. Sterl is stoic but creates a whole texture and context for Lou that no one else could do. Mo Tucker is the mother of modern percussion. Cale is a master renaissance man, playing bass, viola, keyboards - and you have to dig his performance of The Gift. And Lou. Lou. The ring leader, grand wizard and master alchemist. With all due respect to the other reviewers, don't be looking here for jolly onstage chemistry. This is the VELVETS man! The chemistry is IN the MUSIC. From the definitive versions of "hits" like Sweet Jane, Rock 'n Roll and Pale Blue Eyes, to the synchopated intravenous speedballs of Some Kinda Love, Beginning to See the Light and I Can't Stand It, to the way-out-there weirdness of Hey Mr. Rain and Black Angel's Death Song, this music and performance stands apart from anything else in rock and demands your attention. Do it, and don't miss it.
Comment 8 of 10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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