Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert
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Eagle Vision's new SD Blu-ray range presents upscaled standard definition original material with uncompressed stereo and DTS-HD surround sound for the best possible quality.
On April 20th 1992, Roger Taylor, Brian May and John Deacon, the surviving members of Queen, took to the stage at Wembley Stadium for the start of one of the biggest events in rock history, which the band had organized to pay tribute to their former colleague the incomparable Freddie Mercury. Queen was joined by some of the greatest musical talent in the world to celebrate Freddie's life and work and to increase public awareness of AIDS, the disease that had prematurely ended his life the previous year. As well as being great entertainment, the concert raised a huge and still growing sum of money for the Mercury Phoenix Trust, a charity formed at the time whose charter is the relief of suffering from AIDS throughout the world. Now for the first time both halves of the concert are being made available on SD-Blu-ray along with additional bonus material in this special edition release.
60 minute documentary, rehearsal footage, photo galleries
1) Intro 2) Brian May / Roger Taylor / John Deacon Introduction 3) Metallica Enter Sandman 4) Metallica Sad But True 5) Metallica Nothing Else Matters 6) Freddie Montage (Insert) 7) Extreme Queen Medley 8) Freddie Montage (Insert) 9) Def Leppard & Brian May Now I'm Here 10) Queen I'm Going Slightly Mad video (Insert) 11) Bob Geldof Too Late God 12) Guns n' Roses Paradise City 13) Guns n' Roses Knocking On Heavens Door 14) Elizabeth Taylor Speech
MAIN QUEEN SET
1) Joe Elliot, Slash & Queen Tie Your Mother Down 2) Roger Daltrey, Tony Iommi & Queen I Want It All 3) Zucchero & Queen Las Palabras De Amor 4) Gary Cherone, Tony Iommi & Queen Hammer To Fall 5) James Hetfield, Tony Iommi & Queen Stone Cold Crazy 6) Robert Plant & Queen Crazy Little Thing Called Love 7) Brian May Too Much Love Will Kill You 8) Paul Young & Queen Radio Ga Ga 9) Seal & Queen Who Wants To Live Forever 10) Lisa Stansfield & Queen I Want To Break Free 11) David Bowie, Annie Lennox & Queen Under Pressure 12) Ian Hunter, David Bowie, Mick Ronson & Queen All The Young Dudes 13) David Bowie, Mick Ronson & Queen Heroes 14) George Michael & Queen Year Of 39 15) George Michael, Lisa Stansfield & Queen These Are The Days Of Our Lives 16) George Michael, London Gospel Choir & Queen Somebody To Love 17) Elton John, Axl Rose & Queen Bohemian Rhapsody 18) Elton John, Tony Iommi & Queen The Show Must Go On 19) Axl Rose & Queen We Will Rock You 20) Liza Minelli & Ensemble We Are The Champions
1) Rehearsal Footage 2) Documentary 3) Photo Galleries 4) Facts
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If you've already got one of the Laserdisc editions(particularly the Japanese or British Laserdisc releases) and you've transferred them to DVD-R, your homemade discs will suffice. I'm one of only a few hundred people in North America that has the equipment to play British Laserdiscs, and I long ago transferred this Laserdisc release to DVD-R, and those of you who have the Japanese Laserdisc release would be advised that your homemade DVD-R copies will suffice.
UPDATE: I cancelled my order for the endlessly postponed U.S.A. release, and I've ordered the UK Blu-Ray disc. I'll give you an update on its quality(or lack thereof) when it arrives. Eagle Rock Entertainment can't seem to get its act together. And I won't be surprised if Eagle Rock's upcoming Doors Blu-Ray disc also ends up being released only overseas.
LATEST UPDATE: I bought the UK Blu-Ray release from Amazon's British affiliate. The disc is indeed U.S.A. compatible(1080i all regions). The disc is 4:3 ratio(Non-widescreen) upconverted to 1080i. The surround audio is an upmix from the original stereo, and is presented in the "DTS-HD High Resolution" format(a lossy variant on the lossless DTS-HD Master Audio system). You might as well play the lossless 48Khz/16 bit lossless PCM soundtrack, and create your own simulated surround sound with your surround sound receiver or preamplifier.The musical contents are the same as on the original UK & Japan Laserdisc & VHS releases(still not the complete show), with the addition of 3 rehearsal performances and a one hour documentary. As for the picture quality of the concert, it is passable, though, for unknown reasons, the 3 rehearsal performances have much better resolution. In one respect, watching standard definition materials from DVD is better: in upconversion to high definition, the program's frame per second rate must be reduced to Blu-Ray's 24 frames per second(versus the 25 frames per second of Uk DVD or the 30 frames per second of U.S.A. DVD).
The American release VHS and laser disc releases had most (but not all) of the concert. The 2-disc DVD release in 2002 had LESS of the concert than the VHS and LaserDisc had (the DVD did not include the Extreme medley, the GNR set, or the Metallica set, for example) BUT it included bonus backstage and rehearsal footage that was not available on the Laserdisc or VHS as well as the Zucchero performance.
This new Blu-ray, if we are to believe what we're being told, fills in the holes. We get all the footage from the Laserdisc and VHS that didn't make it onto the DVD, and all the other DVD content that was never released on Laserdisc or VHS. The best of both worlds. Plus, it includes the Bob Geldof appearance that was not on the laserdisc or the VHS.
I'm told there was some additional concert footage that was released on Japanese versions of the tape and/or laserdisc that still isn't included here. But we weren't gonna get that stuff anyway.
Yes, the concert was shot in Standard Definition. It was more than 20 years ago, for crying out loud. But you can count on the Blu-ray image to be upscaled and still look a bit sharper and cleaner, even if only slightly, than any previous U.S. releases.
So what's to complain about? Nothing, really. There is more footage in this single Blu-ray release than was available on any previous single release -- in any format -- in the U.S. Everything in one place instead of spread out over different formats.
Received my Blu-ray on 10/23/13. Played the documentary feature first and was very, very pleased with how the concert footage looked in that documentary. Sharp, clear, bright. It was great.
Then I started playing the main feature. It looked terrible! Much worse than the laserdisc, VHS, and DVD copies I have watched numerous times in the past. I only made it as far as Extreme's set before I turned it off in frustration.
Where the picture quality was vibrant in the other releases, it looks dull and flat on the Blu-ray. As a result the show looks "less intimate", if that makes any sense. It doesn't have that "live" feel. Night and day difference, like the difference between digital film and videotape.
Anyone else encounter this issue?
Maybe the other parts of the concert look better, but I just couldn't make it that far into the show this time.
Disappointing transfer. Very disappointing. I feel I've been made a fool of for buying this.
I've watched the concert live in 1992, and owned the NTSC laserdisc version as well as the 2002 DVD.
They improved the video quality of the concert and cleaned it up a lot. The picture may look a bit pixelated
since you are up-scaling from video to blu-ray, however, it always looked way saturated (especially the reds)
and now it just looks cleaner. Presented in full screen 4:3 does justice to it, since the 2002 DVD was cropped
to make it fill the screen therefore giving us less.
It will always be my favorite concert, and bring me to a time when the whole world will sit down and watch
something together. Well, at least all of Europe. The sound quality is good, not a day and night improvement
over the other versions I mentioned, even though it DTS-HD. There's only so much you can do with a video source
meant for TV from 20 years ago.
As far as content? It's still not the full version with Spinal Tap, all of Extreme's set, Def Leppard's set
and Robert Plant butchering "Innuendo" but, we have do everything else. Nothing beats George Michael's "Somebody to Love."
If you're a fan of Queen, or of any of the major acts participating, and you want to see a lot of rock legends on one stage, Buy it.