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'OMD - Live Architecture & Morality & More'
(OMD / DVD / NR / (2007) 2008 / Eagle Rock)

Overview: Synth-pop outfit Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, perform live in London's Hammersmith Apollo as part of their 2007 tour of Europe. The group return to their 1981 hit ARCHITECTURE AND MORALITY with a complete performance of the album, then dedicate the second half of the concert to the greatest hits from the rest of their critically acclaimed career.

DVD Verdict: For me you can keep the second half, but oh, the first! Architecture & Morality is a fine, fine album, beautifully, soulfully and sublimely brought to life by a band that recognises the value of that which they had. Desolate, melancholic soundscapes sweep out, augmented by clever imagery clearly chosen to dovetail with the music.

Is the video editing trite? Yes. And the sound could be better. And what is with those bored looking audience members? (Possibly something to do with the 40+ demographic of the average OMD fan?)

As for the pictures one can get a strong flavor of the great stage set and the band's commanding of it. The visuals on the large screens look spectacular and compliment the music perfectly (would loved to have had a fixed wide shot in the DVD extras "angle" function). Frontman Andy McCluskey's driving gusto and enthusiasm easily shine through.

Given the constraints of budget and venue the camera work is generally good and the direction fine. My understanding is that the footage was filmed over two nights on a tight budget. Given that fact the final cut is remarkable. My only other gripe is that there are some poor and unimaginative hand-held shots of the audience (as already mentioned above) and the band onstage.

But in the end this is a great DVD. The passion and clear enjoyment of the band is infectious, the performances near perfect and a time warp back to 1982 when a 14 year old kid heard the music for the first time and knew exactly what they meant. This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.77:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:

Alternate Edits of: "Joan of Arc (Maid of Orleans)" and "The New Stone Age"
Interview with Hambi Haralambous, the man behind the graphics (5 mins).
Individual Interviews of each band member (20 mins).