DVDylan ID: D1073.su
Recording type: Audience
City/Venue: London, England, UK/Hammersmith Apollo
Date: Tuesday, 9th February 1993

This DVD is enhanced in no small measure by the sterling sound upgrade source, a recently unearthed primary video source, and two secondary video sources used to fill the two missing songs and a few clip and cuts. The primary video source is shot from center balcony and is mostly focused on Dylan from about the knees up. We see plenty of drummer Winston Watkins due to the focus on Dylan with the drum set directly behind him, but the camera pans over to lead guitarist J.J. Johnson often enough to allow the viewer to watch him perform his tasty licks. We see less of bassist Tony Garnier and slide player Bucky Baxter, but their presence is captured by some nice stills from the secondary video sources.

This is one of those interesting February 1993 performances where Dylan plays mostly his Martin D-28 acoustic guitar using a rather unique finger-picking thumb-strumming style more suitable for acoustic numbers. That he pulls it off is due in part to the excellent back-up work of J.J. and B.B., but his contribution is clearly heard even on the hard rockers, where he also foregoes the flat pick. As for the acoustic numbers, the four-song set is memorable. "Jim Jones" is, of course, a treat that was performed live 31 times in 1993, but not before or since. It made this viewer pine for the days when Dylan was playing acoustic guitar in concert in a more traditional folk style and in a singing style that more closely approximated the original versions. The audience response to this song makes it clear that they were thrilled by and appreciative of the performance of a traditional Australian folk ballad about an English convict condemned to sail from England to Botany Bay.

The concert is further enhanced by the appearance of Dave Stewart on "Highway 61 Revisited," and we're very fortunate that a secondary source was available to fill the shaky and obstructed start to the primary source. We are treated to some extreme close-ups afforded by a camera position from the left balcony, with some adroit panning and zooming by the camera man.

While there are a few nits one might pick, e.g., over-saturated video when the lights are bright, some shaky spots, and left-right sound channel issues at the start of the show, 5 Stars are well-deserved for a memorable performance and first-rate stealth sources.

Reviewed by yassou on 14th January 2013