With Chickenfoot only formed in 2008 some would argue that 2010 is far too soon for such a recently conceived band to release a live concert DVD, but we're not talking any 'normal' band here. Although the band is new (for they are a 'band' who plan to be around for a while as they've publically renounced the 'supergroup' tag and concomitant ephemeral implications of such a label), its constituent members are all veterans of the scene. For those who are unaware (where ya been the past few months?!) the eccentrically named Chickenfoot are Joe Satriani; Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony (both ex-Van Halen), and Red Hot Chilli Peppers' Chad Smith. Rather than treading any new musical ground, they've combined each of their talents to hone a refined classic hard rock/metal sound chock full of Satch's virtuosic fretboard widdlings. So original, no, but what they do is executed to perfection, both recorded and in a live context. I'm able to make such an observation from first hand experience (Rockweekend Festival in Sweden last summer), but here we have a live show on DVD; actually, make that multiple live shows from 2009 as both footage and audio, according to the press sheet accompanying this review copy, have been captured utilising "16 state-of-the-art hi-definition cameras over three sold out concerts". And we're talking 16 cameras that have been used well as the band have been filmed from every conceivable angle you would want to be viewing them, and from afar, up close, and sweeping across the sold out audience(s). I've often considered the live concert DVD a strange beast. After all, there's no direct replacement for the experience of physically attending a show and having your ear drums blasted by booming PA speakers that allow you to actually 'feel' the music as your body vibrates to sounds emanating from the bass bins but, for those who missed Chickenfoot on tour last year, this release will act as a fine substitute and, beyond that, it also serves as a 'memento' for those who did attend one of their shows. With only one Chickenfoot album to date, the setlist is unsurprisingly somewhat predictable with all songs bar 'Runnin' Out' making an appearance (even bonus track 'Bitten by the Wolf' from the Deluxe Limited Edition reissue is performed), together with encore covers of Montrose's 'Bad Motor Scooter' and The Who's 'My Generation'. At the climax of the latter, Hagar boldly states "that's the way rock 'n' roll is supposed to be played", and I doubt anyone would be disagree with such a statement. Spec-wise, the concert's presented in the 16:9 screen format, and there's a choice of three audio tracks - 5.1 DTS; 5.1 Dolby; and 2.0 Stereo, each of which offer fully resonant sonics and a well balanced mix, particularly impressive being the two surround sound options. Bonus features on the DVD are a streaming photo gallery (just short of two minutes long) and a fifty minute documentary (the cover states 52 mins but I guess two are lost through the NTSC to PAL conversion). Amusingly the documentary opens with Chad Smith walking around the streets with a photo of the band, enquiring with random strangers if they've heard of Chickenfoot or recognise anyone in the picture. The majority don't and one guy even thinks he identifies Jimmy Page (to which Smith falsely declares "yes, excellent...wow, you're good!"). The documentary is an insightful, often comical, look behind the rock star personas of band members that will undoubtedly delight fans of these four men, with interviews, behind the scenes and performance footage, along with a whole load of other random stuff such as when Hagar visits his friend Bob Weir of Grateful Dead fame. Overall, a neat package that comes highly recommended.
Chickenfoot: Get Your Buzz On “Live” is released on DVD & Blu-ray in the USA by EMI America (April 20th), and in the UK by Eagle Rock Entertainment (April 26th). Further info: www.chickenfoot.us
Eagle Rock Entertainment
GET YOUR BUZZ ON "LIVE"
Review by Mark Holmes
97 mins (concert)
26th April 2010
1) Avenida Revolution; 2) Sexy Little Thing; 3) Soap on a Rope; 4) My Kinda Girl; 5) Down the Drain; 6) Bitten by the Wolf; 7) Oh Yeah; 8) Learnin' to Fall; 9) Get it Up; 10) Turnin' Left; 11) Future in the Past; 12) Bad Motor Scooter; 13) My Generation
(+ photo gallery & 50 min documentary)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
"...there's no direct replacement for the experience of physically attending a show and having your ear drums blasted by booming PA speakers that allow you to actually 'feel' the music as your body vibrates to sounds emanating from the bass bins but, for those who missed Chickenfoot on tour last year, this release will act as a fine substitute and, beyond that, it also serves as a 'memento' for those who did attend one of their shows."