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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Sammy Hagar & Waboritas: Cabo Wabo Birthday Bash Tour (2 DVD)
Sammy Hagar & Waboritas: Cabo Wabo Birthday Bash Tour (2 DVD)
Image // Unrated // July 1, 2001
List Price: $24.99 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted August 7, 2001 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie:

Songs: The Real Deal, Ten 13, Shaka Doobie (The Limit), Three Lock Box, Red, There's Only One Way to Rock, Serious Juju, Top of the World, Rock Candy, High and Dry Again, Deeper Kinda Love, A Little Bit More, Eagles Fly/Lay Your Hand on Me, Finish What Ya Started, Little White Lie, Mas Tequila, Why Can't This Be Love, Heavy Metal, Let Sally Drive, I Can't Drive 55, Marching to Mars, Cabo Wabo.

Although I've never been a fan of the former Van Halen leader (or Van Halen overall, really), I sat down to watch this over two-hour concert program that mainly highlights a show that Hagar and his backing band performed in Chicago. The songs that Hagar has provided during his solo career after his stint in Van Halen ended are entertaining; a more modern hard-rock/heavy-metal sound that is engaging - although non-fans of the complete genre aren't likely going to have their opinions changed here.

And, for fans, I think they'll find this concert highly entertaining. Hagar is one of the more entertaining performers that I've ever seen on a concert presentation; jumping around, interacting with the audience - he really puts on a show and attempts to get the audience engaged and having fun. Image Entertainment's new two-disc set presents a slightly over two-hour concert in Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 audio along with a second disc that includes an hour-long interview with the rocker.


The DVD

VIDEO: Image Entertainment presents the Cabo Wabo concert scenes in 1.33:1 full-frame. Although Image Entertainment often presents their concerts in anamorphic widescreen, even when they do a full_frame effort, they still usually manage to do an excellent job. "Cabo Wabo" generally looks good, but there are some flaws that occasionally pop up during the performance. Sharpness and detail aren't bad, though - the picture looks well-defined and crisp, with no instances of softness or haziness.

Some very minor pixelation occasionally turns up very briefly. I didn't find this too distracting, but it was occasionally noticable. No edge enhancement or other problems were visible throughout the show. Colors were nicely rendered as well, as the stage lighting and Hagar's loud-looking clothing both looked bold and didn't suffer from any smearing or other problems.

SOUND: "Cabo Wabo" is presented in DTS and Dolby Digital 5.1. For those who do not have either 5.1 format available, there is an additional Dolby 2.0 track. As with most concert DVDs, the audio quality is more successful than the video quality. The concert sound takes a fairly traditional set-up; the vocals and instrumentals are nicely spread out across the front three speakers while the surrounds provide additional re-inforcement (and in this case, a good deal of crowd noise). Occasionally, surrounds provided some music sounds of their own, but this was fairly rare.

The band's heavy guitar-driven sound was recreated quite well by the DVD, especially the DTS edition, which provided a slightly greater level of clarity and detail to the music. The sound overall packed, as expected, a good deal of force and power, with some very nice low bass kicking in at times. This is definitely one of those sound experiences that would be best delivered - likely at the irritation of most neighbors - at high volumes.

MENUS:: Slightly animated menus are livened by little audio snippets as transitions between main and sub-menus.

EXTRAS:: The second disc provides two extras: an hour-long interview with Hagar where he discusses his career with and without Van Halen as well as the current music scene today. Also included is a short segement of footage from the small town of Cabo Wabo, where Hagar's lively Birthday bash was held.

Final Thoughts: I can't say that I'm a fan of the former Van Halen leader, but he gives one heck of a live performance here, engaging the audience with a high-energy performance from himself and his talented backing band. Hagar seems like he's having an enormous amount of fun and as a result, the audience and the viewer likely will too. Image Entertainment provides a very nice 2 DVD set, with decent video quality, excellent audio quality and two very nice extra features.
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