PictureThe picture is shocking. If you look at the picture of the crowd, you can see some luminance bloom at the top. It's a bit like those Tom Baker Dr Who episodes where the camera passes a light and a comet like trail smears across the screen as a result. Also, if people move too fast, like a drummer's hands for example, then they develop slight smeary trails, too. There isn't any grain or noise, but the picture is so soft such anomalies would be absorbed into the picture anyway. If the camera is stationary, however, then some form of detail is evident albeit with sepian NTSC pallor. Overall, though the picture is not good.
SoundSound is paramount on a music DVD, and Shadows and Light does have okay sound. There is an uncompressed LPCM and DD 5.1 track, but whether you like either is a matter of personal choice - the DD track has more bite, but the LPCM one provides more midband warmth and marginal detail gains. However there is a slight shut in feel to the disc, especially in the higher frequencies. I found myself turning up the volume to extract some dynamism from either track. This isn't to say the sound is poor as there are some good qualities. Joni's voice is always clear with the lyrics easily intelligible and some aspects, like sax, seem to be fine. Whatever good qualities this disc has can't redeem an otherwise average sounding disc.
ExtrasLet's have a collective, virtual, “hands up” here: All those who like a slideshow raise your hands! No? No one like to come back from the pub and settle down for a nice slideshow? Didn't think so and there is no reason to think putting a slideshow of Joni Mitchell onto a DVD is going to make the pastime any more agreeable.
VerdictI didn't like this disc. I thought it was a dull, plain, prosaic experience with precious few plus points. But then, I don't like this kind of music - at all.
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