Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

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Andie
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#271 Post by Andie »

le petit corbusier wrote: Fri 30 Apr 2021, 11:42 am
Andie wrote:Looks great canveyboy ImageImage Mine's on its way from the OS. Can't wait to watch it. It's the only concert of theirs that I saw live.
Oh, in what country? Did you experience the same level of energy as in the concert recorded? Do you remember any song not present in this set list? : D
I saw it here in Melbourne. Tuesday November 8th, at the tennis centre as it was called then. Now it’s Rod Laver arena!
The level of energy was great, but the Rio show looked livelier when I watched it on YouTube, that could just be editing of course!
I honestly don’t remember the full set list, but I can still remember the huge beach balls when they did Go West! I loved the Melbourne concert 8) :dance:
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Andie
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#272 Post by Andie »

canveyboy wrote: Fri 30 Apr 2021, 12:03 pm
Andie wrote: Fri 30 Apr 2021, 11:35 am Looks great canveyboy 😎😀 Mine's on its way from the OS. Can't wait to watch it. It's the only concert of theirs that I saw live.
Oh wow! You’re so lucky to have seen this concert! Where did you see it?
Here in Melbourne at the Tennis centre as it was then known. I think Neil mentioned the name in Literally, it amused him I think! It’s now called Rod Laver arena!
Don’t be scared, for only the dark can show you the stars

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oakey
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#273 Post by oakey »

Watching Discovery now. I guess it's great that Parlophone still release items like this, but I would say it's for diehard fans only.

Some comments (watched it on a 65" OLED TV with Denon 5.1 amplifier, JBL speakers and Sony 4K UHD player):
- picture quality is poor; only close ups of Neil look sharpish, the rest is muddy VHS-like unsharp, ie all the full stage shots.
- The colours are oversaturated (especially blue and red, of which there are a lot because of the stage lighting)
- The soundtrack is not great either; it would have benefited from a remix. A 5.1 mix would have been nice, but it's not just the PCM stereo aspect that is a bit of a let down. Neil's vocals are (again) way too low in the mix. It's not ad bad as with the Savoy Somewhere DVD but I must say it is only marginally better. Sounds like Neil's vocals are recorded from the audience, including a bit of echo, rather than directly from his microphone. Makes it sound a bit like audience recorded YT movies
- The digipack packaging is of the kind where the discs are difficult to get out without firmly touching the data side of the disc.
- The CDs seem to sound a bit clearer than the DVD soundtrack, with slightly better audible vocals, but that may also be a false impression because of the lack of visuals (in theory PCM has a slightly higher bitrate than CD audio but doubt this would be audible)

One comment was made regarding a 5.1 mix ("maybe it wasn't recorded in 5.1"). Of course nothing is recorded in surround sound, that is done at the mixing stage. But maybe the original multitracks have vanished and they only have the mastertapes of the stereo mix available. Or a remix would have been to costly.

All in all a fine release but don't think I will watch it very often (or play the CDs).

It's a pity that from the early 80s to the late 90s analogue video was "the thing", seen as an improvement over costly 16mm or 32mm film. Because of that we ended up with poor concert videos from that period as most were recorded on analogue video for the home video market (never with the intention to exceed the then-current TV specs), while film-recorded live shows from the 70s look perfect on current HD or even 4K TVs because of the much higher resolution than the PAL or NTSC specs from analogue video.
(Just check out Supertramp live in Paris from the 70s on bluray or INXS Live Baby Live from early 90s -an exception- on 4K UHD)

Because of that, no HD concert videos exist of David Bowie. Such a shame...

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Drico One
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#274 Post by Drico One »

Maybe it was because I didn't buy the VHS when it came out back in the nineties, but this DVD release really has taken me back to my student days. The interview provides documentary evidence of the reinvention they seemed to undergo at this point in their story. Chris mentions that "this show reflects how we have changed. We are more liberated. I think we are more liberated as people." To which Neil replies, both touchingly and hilariously: "Is that meant seriously? It's quite nice it if is, actually."

Having rabidly consumed Literally over the years, I can't recall a more bizarre passage of Neil's diary than that which is reproduced here. It's almost a self-parody, a neurotic stream of consciousness riddled with anxiety, self-doubt, entitlement, and insecurity. There were moments here when, for the first time, I wondered if somebody had slipped this out just after quality control had knocked off for the night. We might smirk that what happens in South America stays in South America, but that principle wasn't applied to what was going on in Neil's head in Australia. Which makes it all a great read.

People wondered why they didn't tour Very in Europe. I think this diary explains why. That said, the show itself was enjoyable in a knockabout way. The frenzied crowd provides the perfect backdrop to the gaudy on-stage shenanigans. This is basically Pet Shop Boys going off reservation, and it's a lot of fun, capturing them at an experimental phase of their transmogrification from studied studio band to international touring behemoth: pop pupae in chrysalis form.

It's possibly telling that the most thrilling musical moments of the show are the ecstatic segues into Mr Vain and The Rhythm of the Night. Only Can You Forgive Her? and Go West really seemed to live with those. If the Pet Shop Boys we knew might have seemed out of place in a Brazilian burlesque, their commercial touch was also out of time. Mid-90s europop found literate songwriting superfluous. No wonder Neil, in particular, seemed to undergo an out-of-body experience.

Discovery is a really interesting documentary of this less explored but critical period in their history. The shackles are coming off with all the liberating freedom and excess that this entails. It's arguable that this process finds its logical denouement by the end of the decade on Nightlife, but in some ways they only really find the next truly successful - and comfortable - version of themselves two decades later by way of Es Devlin and Stuart Price.

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oakey
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#275 Post by oakey »

Nice read Drico. I owned the VHS (still have it) and have watched the lasterdisc DVD torrent several times that had been floating around the internet for years so I was less surprised by the content.

But agree with your analysis. It is almost a bit too much OTT even for the Pet Shop Boys. Still fun to watch and listen to, but I think I prefer Montage which was the first concert I attended or even their latest tours Stuart Price in which the music is more central.
Last edited by oakey on Sat 01 May 2021, 6:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

ScruffyStorms
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#276 Post by ScruffyStorms »

Just watched the DVD and loved it. This tour was a massive thing in my music fan life not just because it was my first Pet Shop Boys concert, but it was also the first time I got to see one of my all time favourite bands live. I saw them in Perth and the show was a bit different to the one on the DVD - we got "To Face The Truth" instead of "Suburbia" in the acoustic bit, and they also played "Do I Have To" and "Where The Streets Have No Name" (though with the latter I wonder if it was played but left off the DVD due to copyright reasons?)

My full blog post about the Perth show is here if you'd like to read it!
Scruffy Storms - All the music of my life

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Drico One
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#277 Post by Drico One »

oakey wrote: Sat 01 May 2021, 12:42 pm Nice read Drico. I owned the VHS (still have it) and have watched the lasterdisc DVD torrent several times that had been floating around the internet for years so I was less surprised by the content.

But agree with your analysis. It almost a but too much OTT even for the Pet Shop Boys. Still fun to watch and listen to, but I think I prefer Montage which was the first concert I attended or even their latest tours Stuart Price in which the music is more central.
Oh, I've seen the show - I recorded it off the TV one night in 1996, I think. As a student at the time, I went through a phase of not buying their videos (Discovery or Various) despite being an obsessive. A case of "money's short and time is tight." But the whole thing reproduced here with the very revealing interview and diary is a throwback.

I must watch Montage again some time. I don't think I've watched it in nearly 20 years because I found the "effects" intolerable. It didn't do the show justice.

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herts101
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#278 Post by herts101 »

Really enjoyed seeing this for this for the first time in a while. Yes, the picture quality is crap and the sound could be so much better, but weirdly I found that part of the charm.

And due partly to that, to the 90s songs and to the sheer fun of it all, I found myself full of nostalgia, reflecting on just how amazing it has been to be a fan of this band for such a long time, and how lucky I have been to have had Neil and Chris’s soundtrack for all these years.

Just wish I could have been in that audience - British crowds are never anywhere near as enthusiastic!!


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Drico One
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#279 Post by Drico One »

herts101 wrote: Sat 01 May 2021, 2:32 pm And due partly to that, to the 90s songs and to the sheer fun of it all, I found myself full of nostalgia, reflecting on...
Yup, it really takes you back to a happier time when Corona went viral for ecstatic non-immunological reasons.

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telys
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#280 Post by telys »

oakey wrote: Sat 01 May 2021, 11:42 am Watching Discovery now. I guess it's great that Parlophone still release items like this, but I would say it's for diehard fans only.

Some comments (watched it on a 65" OLED TV with Denon 5.1 amplifier, JBL speakers and Sony 4K UHD player):
- picture quality is poor; only close ups of Neil look sharpish, the rest is muddy VHS-like unsharp, ie all the full stage shots.
- The colours are oversaturated (especially blue and red, of which there are a lot because of the stage lighting)
- The soundtrack is not great either; it would have benefited from a remix. A 5.1 mix would have been nice, but it's not just the PCM stereo aspect that is a bit of a let down. Neil's vocals are (again) way too low in the mix. It's not ad bad as with the Savoy Somewhere DVD but I must say it is only marginally better. Sounds like Neil's vocals are recorded from the audience, including a bit of echo, rather than directly from his microphone. Makes it sound a bit like audience recorded YT movies
- The digipack packaging is of the kind where the discs are difficult to get out without firmly touching the data side of the disc.
- The CDs seem to sound a bit clearer than the DVD soundtrack, with slightly better audible vocals, but that may also be a false impression because of the lack of visuals (in theory PCM has a slightly higher bitrate than CD audio but doubt this would be audible)

One comment was made regarding a 5.1 mix ("maybe it wasn't recorded in 5.1"). Of course nothing is recorded in surround sound, that is done at the mixing stage. But maybe the original multitracks have vanished and they only have the mastertapes of the stereo mix available. Or a remix would have been to costly.

All in all a fine release but don't think I will watch it very often (or play the CDs).

It's a pity that from the early 80s to the late 90s analogue video was "the thing", seen as an improvement over costly 16mm or 32mm film. Because of that we ended up with poor concert videos from that period as most were recorded on analogue video for the home video market (never with the intention to exceed the then-current TV specs), while film-recorded live shows from the 70s look perfect on current HD or even 4K TVs because of the much higher resolution than the PAL or NTSC specs from analogue video.
(Just check out Supertramp live in Paris from the 70s on bluray or INXS Live Baby Live from early 90s -an exception- on 4K UHD)

Because of that, no HD concert videos exist of David Bowie. Such a shame...
You are absolutely right. I was disappointed when pressed the play button on the CD... I also miss the intro on the CD (The man who has everything intro).
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Greendrake
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#281 Post by Greendrake »

ScruffyStorms wrote: Sat 01 May 2021, 12:51 pm I saw them in Perth and the show was a bit different to the one on the DVD - we got "To Face The Truth"
You lucky duckies! Such a shame no recordings of that exist (or do they?) and also that they have never played the song live again.

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minimal
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#282 Post by minimal »

Chances are if video material of the omitted songs had existed they surely would have included it as some sort of bonus on the current DVD release? Clearly that's what I'm missing most.

m+

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telys
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#283 Post by telys »

minimal wrote: Sun 02 May 2021, 7:17 am Chances are if video material of the omitted songs had existed they surely would have included it as some sort of bonus on the current DVD release? Clearly that's what I'm missing most.

m+
Neil's feelings of screwing up on the guitar on To Face The Truth would suggest they don't want any of it released.
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telys
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#284 Post by telys »

They were thinking of playing The Theatre and Violence but removed them from the setlist at the last minute. Pity. Would've loved to hear them although they perhaps don't fit the party mood of the concert.
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Re: Discovery 1994 - DVD/CD-Release

#285 Post by Patrick Bateman »

telys wrote: Sun 02 May 2021, 9:13 am They were thinking of playing The Theatre and Violence but removed them from the setlist at the last minute. Pity. Would've loved to hear them although they perhaps don't fit the party mood of the concert.
I don't see why not. To Speak is a Sin and King's Cross are hardly Agadoo.

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