Search This Blog

Thursday, January 19, 2012

BCC – Live Over Europe DVD review

BCC – Live Over Europe DVD review
Released on: J&R Adventures. Release Date: Available now

The titles open against a sound like the factory operations that dominated the midlands area known as the Black Country!

Black Country Communion, what a killer band!
Glenn Hughes (Deep Purple, Trapeze, Hughes / Thrall), Joe Bonamassa, Jason Bonham (Airrace, Foreigner, UFO, Led Zeppelin) and Derek Sherinian (Dream Theater), what else need be said about these guys except for the fact that they are all experts in their own trades.

Two phenomenal voices in Glenn Hughes and Joe Bonamassa, great harmony vocals from Bonham, funk rock bass from Hughes, hard rocking blues guitar from Bonamassa and keyboard wizardry like no other from Sherinian.
The sound they create, will never be copied, it captures so much uniqueness, but with many elements from their individual 'previous lives' shall we say, to create a fantastic sound.

The intro piece is a snippet of the band in a live setting, with ‘Revolution of the Machine’ before the bands rips through their theme song, ‘Black Country,’ then it’s the excellent ‘One Lost Soul’ – My favourite from 'BCC 2' – which is as good in a live setting as it is in the studio and Glenn Hughes is clearly so into the whole event, it’s great!

The sound mix could be a little better, especially if it’s direct board stuff rather than just mic’d, but ‘Hey,’ it is live and most of these shows come across as being outdoor events, which helps even less.
I must say I think Joe Bonamassa’s guitar playing just goes from strength to strength! He’s incredible!

‘Crossfire’ is up next and it leads you into a kind of false sense of security, as it starts gently and just grows!
It still has its soulful, funky elements that are just so Glenn Hughes about it, which speaks volumes. 
Up to this point it’s all Glenn handling the lead vocals, Jason Bonham and Joe helping out on backup vocals.

What’s perhaps a little funny - as in strange - is that when Derek Sherinian does get to flex his keyboard muscles with a solo, the camera doesn’t always focus on him it stays with Glenn and Joe.

‘Save Me’ starts soulfully before then getting into a (Led) Zeppelin like groove, but then Bonamassa’s solo is perhaps more akin to something say Ritchie Blackmore would’ve played back in his rock days, which is no bad thing by me!

The film footage then jumps onto following the tour bus, taking the band to the next city on the road and now Joe Bonamassa gets to flex his lead vocal talents on ‘Battle For Hadrian’s Wall.’ I really love this song and it also gives Jason Bonham a chance to showcase some fills that are excellent!
LOL! The camera seems to catch Derek Sherinian looking bored at times or maybe that’s just a focused look!
In fairness to the guy, his keyboards sound pretty low in the mix for the most part of much of the footage here, than say that of Hughes or Bonamassa.

‘Beggarman’ is next and it’s one of those songs that for the most part is great, but there’s a little melody line in it, where the last note always sounds off to me?

Then Glenn Hughes is caught in a brief backstage interview moment, explaining that BCC is not trying to change the world, ‘We’re simply, just a rock and roll band!’

‘Faithless’ is the next track on display here at a different show along the way and yes …, this one is another favourite of mine. It’s class!

Then it’s Joe’s turn to talk to the camera before it’s back to the band and ‘Song of Yesterday.’
It’s a song that grows into epic proportions, starting slow and laid back and then grows and grows, at times reminding me a little of Bad Company. Glenn Hughes joins in the second half of the song, but it’s right out of the Bonamassa songbook basically.

We get a little funky next which of course is Glenn Hughes territory, with the groove of ‘I Can See Your Spirit.’ I really love Joe’s solo here, then Derek gets in on the act too, before Jason shows what he’s very capable of!

Glenn then introduces ‘Cold’ as a song they wrote about the many friends that they’ve all lost over the years and dealing with acceptance of loss to move on. Deep stuff …
It’s seriously beautifully, soulful! I love it!
Glenn’s voice here is stunning, while kudos are in order to Jason for his harmonizing.

 Joe next take vocal duties for the bluesy rocker, ‘Ballad of John Henry.’
It must be said that this band is just so impressive, with the two very different lead vocalists. Joe’s style is not unlike Paul Rodgers, but smoother if you ask me! Glenn Hughes is …, well, Glenn Hughes! I don’t think there’s anyone even close to sounding how he does!

Jason is then caught on camera, speaking of just how lucky he is, to have the job he does! Explaining that the hardest part is all the travelling, but then they hit the stage and its all clear as to why they do what they do.

 ‘The Outsider’ from the second album is certainly one of the strongest tracks – for me! – they’ve even done! It just totally rocks out!
I especially love how Joe and Derek are playing solos off each other, killer!

The band then dip back to the first album for ‘The Great Divide,’ that Glenn introduces as one of ‘our own favourites!’

Producer Kevin Shirley speaks next briefly before the band next play ‘Sista Jane,’ which they even throw a little cover snippet of ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again,’ before Derek speaks briefly and then it’s right into ‘Man In The Middle.’

It’s a Glenn Hughes history lesson next, to see who can remember next track, Deep Purple's ‘Burn?!’
Great job, love Joe’s guitar work here, that Flying V sounds great!

This disc then wraps up playing out to images alongside credits, to the sound of ‘Smokestack Woman.’

The second disc of course is bonus material, including more interview time, explaining ‘The Forging of Black Country Communion,’ with Glenn meeting up with Joe backstage at a James Brown show … Brilliant stuff!
There’s a load more on the second disc, including promo videos too, it’s a really good set.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Official website:

No comments:

Post a Comment