Stevie Wonder: Live at Last
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Stevie Wonder performs live at London's O2 Arena in October 2008 as part of his 'Wonder Summer Nights' European tour. Songs include classics from all stages of his career including 'My Cherie Amour', 'Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)', 'Superstition', 'Higher Ground', 'Living for the City' and 'You Are the Sunshine of My Life'. Stevie's daughter, Aisha Morris, joins him on the stage as a backing singer.
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Only one small gripe: The A/V team failed to do this Blu-ray full justice. To my knowledge this is Stevie's only HD production. As such, I expected them to do a better job with the A/V editing. The background vocals were only marginally mixed into the DTS audio track, but fortunately Stevie is so amazing that he carried the day. The video and camera work was also marginal. With a better job on the production end, this could have been classic.
That said, Stevie was AWESOME. If you are a fan, you will most definitely want this Blu-ray.
But it is Stevie Wonder's songs that are so striking in this video. From "My Cherie Amour" and "Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)," which date from the late 1960s, to tunes from his latest CD "A Time 2 Love," this is an astonishing repertory--and one the audience knew well, as they responded to Stevie's frequent requests to sing along. (The predominantly white audience--well, this *was* England--was gently needled by Stevie when they sang about being "nappy headed boys" on "I Wish.") Two hours hardly seemed enough time to sample it. The tunes are presented not in "greatest hits" medleys, but given full-length performances, often with new arrangements to accommodate the band. I can't recommend a better overview of the work of an astonishing American composer.
I could quibble with song selection; I thought the set list in Baltimore was even better. And it was blast in DC when he went all the way back to the 60s in the set. But let's face it: He has such a huge catalog; he can't possibly do all of the ones you want to hear. But without a doubt, this concert is a definitive set of Stevie Wonder at his best. And the band is ON FIRE! The musicianship is second to none and he is in fine voice throughout. It is a joy to see such talent up close and personal like this. No interviews; no background segments; just 2+ hours of the Genius and his band doing what they do.
The picture in HD is shockingly colorful; almost 3D in some places with the effects and lighting on the stage. The sound quality in HD Master Audio is astounding! It is amazing that even on the uptempo cuts every instrument in the band has presence. And the director did an awesome job of capturing the excitement of the crowd.
So, this is the best. It's like going to a Stevie Wonder concert with even better sound than you'd hear in the building and you can play it over and over again in the comfort of your home theater.
Life is sweet!