Artist: Jeff Lynne’s ELO
Title: “Live In Hyde Park”
Label: Eagle Vision
Release Date: 9/11/2015
Historically speaking in the list of groups that I have always wanted to see in my life lies the band Electric Light Orchestra or ELO as I will be referring to them for the rest of this narrative. The band itself came to life in the early 70’s and essentially was many members of The Move who were a very popular British Rock band during the sixties. When ELO took flight in their fantabulous spacecraft the radio waves of every single Rock station was ensnared by their melodies. One could truly not get through an hour of listening time without hearing at least one of their tracks and no one minded because these tunes were so catchy and melodic and just “bigger” and different when it came down to it. One of the foremost plans behind the bands inception was to blend radio friendly Rock with Classical instruments and they did this to success again and again.
This new live DVD finds Jeff Lynne and his longtime ELO collaborator Richard Tandy delivering the musical goods in front of about 50,000 fans at an event for the BBC Radio 2 that is called “Festival In A Day”. Thought I’d never heard of this particular event its clearly popular if you are bringing 50K people into it. The group wastes no time launching into ELO classics and the video truly showcases the wonderful stage setup that they were using with superb clarity and brilliance in color. One begins to feel as if they are in the front row for the close-ups and a little further back for the wider shots. Now when it comes to ELO material I am guilty of being a “hits” guy, and that was based on my growing up along with radio rock and knowing signature tunes like “Evil Woman”, “Livin’ Thing” and “Turn To Stone”; the latter being one of my top tunes in their repertoire. Lynne and Tandy are joined by a bevy of talented musicians and singers for this mega performance and I felt the drumming truly captured the thick sounds of the bands original drummer Bev Bevan when he was hitting the toms. It’s just made it all the more “true” in its delivery at the end of the day for me. Another interesting part of the show is that we get a quick taste of The Travelling Wilbury’s in “Handle With Care” which was the first track the world got from a true super group made up of Lynne, George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty. I felt it was a nice touch. There is truly something for everyone in this very enjoyable live performance and while it comes on both standard edition (the one I am reviewing) and Blu-ray disc, there does not yet seem to be an audio only companion which is a shame. I could easily see myself listening to this one in the car or gathered with friends at some occasion. Maybe in the future.
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