DVDylan ID: D802
Recording type: Mixed
City/Venue: L Knight Center, Miami, Florida plus the Spektrum, Oslo, Norway
Date: Wednesday, 30th November -0001


LONG BEFORE THE KATRINA FLOOD
GENERAL COMMENTS: Good quality audio mostly but unfortunately there are problems with picture quality. For the Oslo concert, the taper's angle is too skewed (mostly) and distance is problematic but is good at certain times. The quality of PROMOS is of course good as it is pro-shot.
HIGHLIGHTS: a beautiful, earthy rendition (and rare at that) of Blackjack Davey plus a wonderful and unusual rendition of I and I.
OSLO:
Overall the concert is in no way bad but in no way special either. Lack of visual appeal detracts from enjoying this concert.
PROMOS:
The version of Like a Rolling Stone by the Rolling Stones (who the song could almost be about or by) is very interesting and the film clip has been created to fit the progress of the lyrics in the song, offering one interesting interpretation of the song, albeit a little TOO literal. When the Night Comes Falling from the Sky - I really like this song - one of my favorite off Empire Burlesque but the less said about the film clip the better - amateurish at best. This song seems to depict another tableau of Armageddon to me but the film looks like a bunch of people (mostly with mullets) on Prozac or something.............very weird.
MIAMI:
This was the main attraction for me of this DVD.
Man in Me: Nice audio & performance although the picture quality is rather grainy and hazy (which happens to stay this way throughout).
Watching the River Flow: Very, very fast finger-on-the-pulse version - so much so that it has almost turned into a rockabilly song - probably Bob's intention.
You're a Big Girl Now: Now what a great song this is and you can hear someone in the crowd say, "Oh my God" at the start of the song, presumably acknowledging his awareness that he's about to witness something rare and special. Dylan hurries and fluffs the lines a little bit but overall very good by ordinary artist standards. (I'm only comparing with what Dylan - the absolute master of vocal delivery period - is actually capable of - sheer magic that is).
Blackjack Davey (Highlight #1): Great traditional song - first heard this one on a Woody Guthrie record (wonder if that's where Dylan first heard it too or not....) - absolutely lovely - pity we cannot see more of Bob here.
Gates of Eden: Lovely, mellow performance - the visual imagery that the lyrics conjure up (if you happen to concentrate on them) is quite vivid and very powerful.
It's all over now Baby Blue: Very impassioned performance - lovely simplistic harmonica towards the end to round it off.
I and I (Highlight #2): Despite the frequent panning in and out with the zoom function, our taper manages to capture a rare version of my favorite song off Infidels. The drums here brilliantly compliment the overall feel of the song and especially what and how Dylan is singing. Overall sheer brilliance - and the crowd know it!
Maggie's Farm: Good, but this is always good. Pretty solid version - the band is on fire here. Overall good but there are so many (countless in fact) awesome versions (version from the Deep Beneath the Waves bootleg for example, just to name one) of this song out there that you could make a semester project just on the topic.
Ballad of a Thin Man: Nice way to close out the disc. Very good vocal from Mr. D.

VERDICT: Doesn't quite cut the mustard. It might be something that I might take another look at again but not at all high on the priority list. This disc is worth checking out if you are interested in seeing Blackjack Davey and I and I as songs - otherwise leave it.

Big thank you to pswets for this one.

Reviewed by Blackburne on 08th January 2009