Counting Crows – August and Everything After – Live at Town Hall, Blu-ray (2011)
Studio: Eagle Vision Entertainment EVB 333859 [8/30/11]
Video: 16:9 1980i HD color
Audio: DTS HD Master, Dolby Digital 5.1, PCM Stereo
Length: 119 minutes
Extras: “In Depth” with Adam Buritz and Charley Gillingham
Rating: Sound **** Video **½
Counting Crows was formed in 1991 in San Francisco, CA. I must admit that I had only heard a couple of their tunes on the radio before I listened to this album. I would describe their sound as modern blues-influenced pop rock. It contains the two hits “Mr. Jones” and “Around Here”. The concert was filmed in 2011 at Town Hall in NYC. The group is driven by the vocals and song writing of Adam Buritz. For this concert the songs from the original 2007 album were reworked and expanded.
Soundwise this album is completely different from the Sheryl Crow Blu-ray from the same label. The sound this time is very good. The vocals are clear and have good sense of presence. You can hear the impact on the drums, and the other instruments are clear and fairly life-like. The balance between instruments is good. The sound clearly conveys the angst and feeling of the lyrics. This disc is very successful at capturing a live rock concert and is one of the best rock concert discs I have heard. The only improvements I would like the see on this disc are slightly more bass impact and a little more cymbal clarity.
The picture suffers from the usual rock concert problems. There is lots of artificial smoke and strong back-lighting. Most of the strong lighting is from the back or sides. When they give you close ups, you can see the quality of the high definition picture. The excellent sound makes this a worthwhile disc to have. The video is probably about what you would see at the live concert, without the close-ups of course.
TrackList: Round Here/Raining in Baltimore, Omaha, Mr. Jones, Perfect Blues Buildings, Anna Begins, Time and Time Again, Rain King, Sullivan Street, Ghost Town, A Murder of One.
If any of the manufactures are reading this review, I would like to request three other concerts for Blu-ray release: Paul McCartney – Live in NY; Tom Petty – Live at Gatorville; Brandi Carlile – Live at Benaroya. All are great concerts.
If any recording is essential to the genre, this is it.