Unplugged [DVD] review by Pearl Jam

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  • Released: Mar 24, 2009
  • Sound: 8
  • Content: 9
  • Production Quality: 7
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 10 (10 votes)
Pearl Jam: Unplugged [DVD]
5

Sound — 8
Pearl Jam's Ten was a musical masterpiece, a real breakthrough for Pearl Jam and an album that took the angst and energy of the 90's to the masses. On Unplugged (Available through the Deluxe Remastering) Pearl Jam takes a new look at their first album, playing through it Unplugged and in a live setting before real fans. Songs like Alive, Oceans, and Even Flow which utilized distortion so heavily on the original album are beautifully rewritten to work in an acoustic setting. Eddie really comes into his own during the show, singing with real emotion and obviously enjoying the up close feel of the audience and his band. Unfortunately for the sound, Stone's guitar is very quiet, taking away from the effect of Alive's and Even Flow's solos. Rhythms and riffs are still masterfully done, Black and Porch are real highlights of the show. The drums, however, were played with real sticks instead of the brush sticks favored in most acoustic settings, and they often overpower the rest of the band.

Content — 9
The content is straight forward and simple; a live audience concert, featuring a song selection in the menu and seven acoustic tracks. The setlist contains mostly favorites from the Ten album, with State of Love and Trust from the Singles soundtrack as an added bonus. The band choose their songs well, throwing in the singles (Alive, Even Flow, Jeremy) as well as some of the other adaptable tracks (Porch, Oceans, Black), and obviously the Singles song State of Love and Trust. The content is simple and straight forward, the song order working perfectly and showing the different styles of the early Pearl Jam work at it's finest.

Production Quality — 7
The concert was not over produced to be put onto DVD, a treat for some and quite possibly a turn off for others. This DVD features the songs Unplugged and simple, without all the flash and trendy features offered on other live DVD's. The greatness of the songs lie in the simple production of the album and it's songs. The quality of the entire DVD is excellent, though as mentioned earlier, something should have been done to enhance the sound of Stone's guitar and take away the impact of the drums.

Overall Impression — 9
Overall, the DVD is an excellent buy and well worth the money spent on it. Though it's not as long or "worked on" as the other Unplugged albums by similar artists (most notably Nirvana's), Pearl Jam's Unplugged concert is an excellent demonstration of the band's live prowess and ability. Eddie Vedder is the real star on the DVD, his emotion and ability comes across crystal clear with the more subdued instruments and the smaller audience. Stone's remodeled solos (when audible) are also a great listen, and lend to the DVD being more than just a live play through of the album. Even with the sometimes poor sound and lack of flash, the Unplugged DVD is an excellent add to even the most moderate Pearl Jam fan's collection.

15 comments sorted by best / new / date

    gtrfreak182
    LukkaJovicVp wrote: I prefer downloading to buying ??>
    it's not like it's a shit band dude, it's pearl jam. support them, they deserve it
    LukkaJovicVp
    it's not like it's a shit band dude, it's pearl jam. support them, they deserve it
    LOL ... They probably have enough money to buy the Africa continent.
    Pearl Jamison
    Love it!! Arghh i want it on dvd soo bad i have it on my computer and its amazing but i can finally get it legit lol. . .
    dp2007
    oceans didn't have any distortion on the original record dude
    TheDissident
    dp2007 wrote: oceans didn't have any distortion on the original record dude
    you're absolutely right, I mean to say the chorus like effect the guitar part has on that song. Stupid mistake, shoulda proof read closer. Sorry
    FlyingPirahna
    redeyedbluesman wrote: fairly sure his went out on BBC 2 in about 1993?
    Yes, but it was never officially released on VHS or DVD. The only version floating around was a low-gen VHS transfer with a timecode at the bottom.
    passingFable
    State as an added bonus? Isn't that supposed to be oceans as the added bonus, in the tv show oceans and rocking in the free world are cut out. And you must be confusing Mike Mcready with Stone Gossard. Bottom line, almost poor review, excelent unplugged raw and pure.
    TheDissident
    passingFable wrote: State as an added bonus? Isn't that supposed to be oceans as the added bonus, in the tv show oceans and rocking in the free world are cut out. And you must be confusing Mike Mcready with Stone Gossard. Bottom line, almost poor review, excelent unplugged raw and pure.
    Wow. Absolutely incorrect. State I said was a bonus because Unplugged was a play through of the Ten album. Ocean's was not played on the live showing of the show, but I meant in context with the rest of the songs. And in no way am I confusing Stone with Mike, I know who WROTE solos and who didn't. After reading Five Against One: Pearl Jam biography, excellent read, Stone stated that for the Unplugged show HE rewrote most of the solos to make them work, allowing Mike to play them. Stone also did the main riffs in the Unplugged. Sorry that I over researched the review enough to confuse you, but I thought informing was the point
    passingFable
    My appolegies for the misinterpretation of the 'play through' part, im not from an english speaking country so i stand corrected. But where do i misinterpet "Stone's guitar is very quiet, taking away from the effect of Alive's and Even Flow's solos" he may have rewritten them but he's not playng them, if he is i'll eat my dvd.