"Gary Moore & Friends: One Night in Dublin" Blu-ray Review
April 15, 2009 by Zach Demeter
Members of the band Thin Lizzy reunited in various combinations on August 19th, 2005 to perform a show in honor of band founder Phil Lynott on what would be his 56th birthday. The resulting concert was a huge treat for Lizzy fans around the world, as the various members of the band paired up with Gary Moore to play some of the bands most famous and favorite songs. Now, those who were unable to attend the stunning concert can experience it on Blu-ray in full high-definition video and audio. And once fans are done with the concert, they can check out a collection of interviews conducted for the concert, as well as check out the included booklet with the set.
On August 19th, 2005, on what would have been the eve of his 56th birthday, a statue of Phil Lynott was unveiled I Dublin’s Grafton Street by his mother. There to witness the vent were members of Thin Lizzy from throughout the band’s career. The following evening they joined forces under the leadership of Gary Moore for a concert that paid tribute to Phil Lynott’s memory. The core band of Moore, Jethro Tull bass player Jonathan Noyce and Thin Lizzy’s one and only drummer Brian Downey were joined by the stellar guitar talents of Brian Robertson, Scott Gorham and Eric Bell for a set of Lizy and Gary Moore classics that includes “Jailbreak,” “Don’t Believe a Word,” Still In Love With You,” “Black Rose,” “Whiskey in the Jar,” “Parisienne Walkways” and their anthem “The Boys are Back in Town.”
Even if you know the name but can’t recall their songs, chances are you’ve heard Thin Lizzy at some point, even if you aren’t big into classic rock. Their defining song, “The Boys are Back in Town” isn’t played until nearly the end of the concert, but every song that precedes it is just as forceful and exciting as it was back when they were originally released decades ago. For me, I knew little about Thin Lizzy aside from a few of their songs and, in fact, I didn’t even realize who Gary Moore was until I checked the track list out and saw “Whiskey in the Jar” on the back (of which I heard Metallica’s version prior to Thin Lizzy’s) and then smacked my forehead in realization that this was the Thin Lizzy “reunion” concert of sorts from a few years back.
Delving into the concert itself, it’s a really great collection of songs, though the result is a bit disappointing since there’s barely an hour and a half of music—you’d think such a defining event as a Lizzy reunion would require at least two hours, but when you see some of the members come back up on the stage, you can kind of see why they wouldn’t play for long—they’re….well, they’re pretty old. Not that it stops them from wailing on the guitars and drums any less, of course, but by the end of the first two songs, Gary Moore’s black shirt was already showing much darker shades than it did when they first took the stage.
But that’s not really a surprise—you’ll see that with any musical act, but Moore did look to get a bit winded by the end of the performance. What’s fantastic about all of it, however, is that while he may be sweating buckets and looking a bit winded, he remained enthusiastic from beginning to end and the fans that filled the audience were clearly enjoying the hell out of the concert.
The track list for the concert is as follows:
1. Walking By Myself
3. Don’t Believe a Word
5. Still in Love With You
6. Black Rose
7. Cowboy Song
8. The Boys are Back in Town
9. Whiskey in the Jar
10. Old Town (excerpt)
11. Parisienne Walkways
As you can see, it’s not a huge track list, but really a great representation of the bands best. Strictly speaking, however, this concert is for fans only and I doubt it’ll convert any new fans to Thin Lizzy; I enjoyed watching it, but none of the songs really stood out to me as something that must be heard from this collection. Though I will say that “Whiskey” sounded quite awesome. Recommended for fans, a Rental for everyone else.
Eagle Rock Entertainment unleashes the 2005 concert in HD form in this Blu-ray release, which arrives in a standard Elite case with double sided insert (reverse shows a wide-shot of Gary Moore in front of the massive sea of fans). Also inside is a two page booklet that features band photos and an introduction by “Classic Rock” and “Metal Hammer” writer Dave Ling.
The concert itself arrives in the form of an AVC encoded 1080i transfer. The transfer is a curious one, as while there’s plenty of definition in the clothing, hair, etc. of the men on the stage, the faces of them all look very waxy, almost as if detail was washed away on their faces only. The sweeping crowd shots also showed a few hints of compression, but overall it’s a fair transfer, although the audio is really where you’ll focus your time anyway. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix takes priority over the LPCM 2.0 and DD5.1 tracks (obviously) and has some very solid separation from beginning to end on this concert.
Extras include…well, only one extra here, really. It’s a set of Interviews (25:18, SD) with the performers and, again, worth checking out for the Thin Lizzy fans as there’s plenty of reminiscing about the great Phil Lynott.
Overall a decent package, but, again, one that’s really Recommended for fans than anything.
Gary Moore & Friends: One Night in Dublin arrives on Blu-ray on April 21st.