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Image Entertainment presents
Tribute to Burt Bacharach and Hal David (2001)

"What the world needs now is love, sweet love/It's the only thing that there's just too little of/What the world needs now is love, sweet love/No, not just for some, but for everyone"
- Dionne Warwick and ensemble

Review By: Jeff Ulmer   
Published: February 18, 2002

Stars: Burt Bacharach, Dionne Warwick, Elvis Costello, Leo Sayer, Paul Carrack, Petula Clark
Other Stars: Kenny Lynch, Lucie Silvas, Lynden David Hall, Brian Kennedy, Yazz, Shola Ama, Sacha Distel, Sumudu Jayatilaka, Brian Kennedy, Brian Conley, Teish O'Day, Edwin Starr, Linda Lewis, Hal David
Director: Toru Hemara

Manufacturer: IFPI
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 01h:48m:01s
Release Date: February 19, 2002
UPC: 014381111828
Genre: pop


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ B+AA D-

DVD Review

Through the 1960s and '70s, the songwriting team of composer Burt Bacharach and lyricist Hal David was a dominant and inimitable force in popular music. Featuring unmistakable melodies, complex arrangements, odd time signatures, and a stylish romanticism, their work defined an era in music history. The pair were introduced through David's brother Mack, who had co-written the theme for The Blob with Bacharach. Marty Robbins' 1957 rendition of The Story of My Life became their first hit together, but it would be a few years before the pair began writing together exclusively. Their compositions gave dozens of artists career vehicles, most notably Dionne Warwick, who scored 15 top ten hits, including Walk on By, I Say a Little Prayer, Message to Michael, Do You Know the Way to San Jose? and Anyone Who Had a Heart. Their music wasn't simply successful on the pop charts. They received Oscar® nods for their theme songs for Woody Allen's What' New Pussycat (a hit for Tom Jones), Michael Caine's breakout film, Alfie, and The Look of Love from James Bond spoof, Casino Royale. They finally took the Oscar® for best song, and a number one hit for B.J. Thomas with Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, which would also earn Bacharach an Oscar® for the score. Gene Pitney (The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence, Only Love Can Break Your Heart), The Carpenters (They Long To Be) Close to You), and Dusty Springfield (Wishin' and Hopin', The Look of Love) were among those securing hits with Bacharach/David material. The pair dissolved in the late 1970s, and their music fell out of fashion for a time, but as evidenced here, their contribution to the Golden Age of Popular Music was paid tribute in this June 2000 performance at London's Royal Albert Hall. The concert was a benefit for the Nordoff-Robbins Foundation, who aid the handicapped through music therapy. Backed by an orchestra, and hosted by Johnnie Walker, the performance contains renditions of Bacharach/David hits by a number of established and upcoming artists, opening with an instrumental medley by saxophonist Lou Greene, comprised of Close to You, Alfie, Do You Know the Way to San Jose?, and Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head. Kenny Lynch follows with Wives and Lovers after which Lucie Silvas gives a nice rendition of the Fifth Dimension hit, One Less Bell to Answer. Lynden David Hall covers Dionne Warwick's first hit, Don't Make Me Over, then Irishman Brian Kennedy sings Reach Out for Me. Do You Know the Way to San Jose? (Yazz), You'll Never Get to Heaven (Shola Ama), and Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head (Sacha Distel) follow, with Paul Carrack's This Guy's in Love With You and Petula Clark doing a medley of A House as Not a Home, Wishin' and Hopin' and Close to You closing the first half of the evening.The second half is highlighted by the appearance of Bacharach himself, who accompanies Elvis Costello on Make it Easy on Yourself and then Dionne Warwick in a medley of songs she made famous. Linda Lewis does a great version of The Look of Love, as does newcomer Teish O'Day on I Just Have to Breathe. Surprisingly, Hal David is not even introduced when he appears on stage during the chorus rendition of What the World Needs Now is Love, which closes the show. Much of the enjoyment of this concert will depend on which of the numerous arrangements of these songs one is most fond of. While I very much enjoyed Brian Conley's rendition of What's New Pussycat (giving Tom Jones a run for his money) and Twenty Four Hours From Tulsa, I was less enthusiastic about others, including Brian Kennedy's ballad version of I'll Never Fall in Love Again or Leo Sayer's (There's) Always Something There to Remind Me. These few personal tastes aside, the quality of the performances was generally quite high, in spite of the difficulty the artists had coming on stage cold, and tackling the challenging material Bacharach and David are famous for. The production values are excellent, making this a must own for fans of contemporary pop music.Complete track list:Instrumental medley (Lou Green):1. Close to You2. Alfie3. Do You Know the Way to San Jose?4. Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My HeadIndividual performances:5. Wives & Lovers (Kenny Lynch)6. One Less Bell to Answer (Lucie Silvas)7. Don't Make Me Over (Lynden David Hall)8. Reach Out For Me (Brian Kennedy)9. Do You Know the Way to San Jose? (Yazz)10. You'll Never Get to Heaven (Shola Ama)11. Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head (Sacha Distel)12. This Guy's in Love With You (Paul Carrack)Petula Clark medley:13. A House is Not a Home14. Wishin' and Hopin'15. Close to You16. (There's) Always Something There to Remind Me (Leo Sayer)17. Alfie (Sumudu Jayatilaka)18. I'll Never Fall in Love Again (Brian Kennedy)19. What's New Pussycat? (Brian Conley)20. 24 Hours From Tulsa (Brian Conley)21. I Just Have to Breathe (Teish O'Day)22. Make it Easy on Yourself (Edwin Starr)23. The Look Of Love (Lind Lewis)24. I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself (Elvis Costello/Burt Bacharach)Medley with Dionne Warwick and Burt Bacharach:25. Walk on By26. I Say a Little Prayer for You27. Do You Know the Way to San Jose?28. Anyone Who Had a HeartEnsemble:29. What the World Needs Now is Love

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.78:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The anamorphic 1.78:1 transfer here is nearly flawless. The image is sharp, colors are vibrant, and black levels as well as shadow detail are excellent. Compression issues are very minor and limited to the backgrounds. I did notice one spot during Edwin Starr's Make it Easy on Yourself performance where the lip sync didn't match. This looks great otherwise.

Image Transfer Grade: A

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: Audio is available in a discreet Dolby Digital 5.1 mix and a stereo Prologic version. The 5.1 track is near perfect sonically, though it doesn't utilize the surrounds for much more than ambience and audience applause. When the host speaks, there are some abrupt perspective changes with the cut due to the change of microphones, but otherwise I was quite impressed with the clarity, definition and separation presented here. The Prologic track is less enveloping, and has a narrower stereo field, and is also more forward focussed. It maintains most of the tonal properties of the discrete mix, with a little less projection in the upper frequencies. Very good overall.

Audio Transfer Grade: A

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Music/Song Access with 24 cues and remote access
Packaging: EastPack
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: I'm never gonna stop the rain by complainin'/Because I'm free no extras worryin' me....

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

Oh, how can I forget you?/When there is always something there to remind meThe music of Burt Bacharach and Hal David defined an era, and in honor of their accomplishments, this tribute concert showcases their considerable talent. An enjoyable and well produced event, the show features a wide range of artists performing some of the world's most recognizable hits. The presentation is great, and very few personal preferences aside, the renditions wonderful. I do feel Hal David should have been recognized (perhaps he was, and it was edited out?), but this snub aside, some great music from one of the music industry's greatest songwriting duos. Recommended.

 


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