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Reviews » Audio Reviews » Olivia Newton-John: One Woman's Live Journey
Olivia Newton-John: One Woman's Live Journey
DTS // DVD Audio
List Price: Unknown [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted August 12, 2001 | E-mail the Author
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The Music:

1. Xanadu
2. Magic
3. Don't Stop Believin
4. Please Mister Please
5. Jolene
6. Let Me Be There
7. Sam
8. Have You Never Been Mellow
9. Precious Love
10. Not Gonna Give Into It
11. Heaven
12. Back With A Heart
13. Suddenly
14. You're The One That I Want
15. Hopelessly Devoted To You
16. Summer Nights
17. Don't Cut Me Down
18. Somewhere Over The Rainbow
19. If You Love Me
20. Let's Get Physical
21. I Honestly Love You


The DVD

SOUND: "One Woman's Live Journey" is presented by DTS in both DTS 5.1 audio as well as Advanced Resolution DVD-Audio 5.1 and Dolby 2.0. The DVD-Audio presentation is 48khz and listeners can switch between any of the tracks to listen to, unlike the Warner Music titles, which do not allow switching between the DVD-Audio and Dolby tracks that they contain. Apparently, this album was only previously available in CD form in an import that was released to coincide with Newton-John's performance at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Recorded live at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, NJ on August 26 & 27, 1999.

"One Woman's Live Journey" has been mixed for surround (and was recorded live) by Elliot Scheiner, who many might be familiar with from his work mixing albums from Sting, Toy Matinee and Steely Dan to surround. Some have said that Scheiner is too liberal with mixing musical material to the surrounds, but I haven't agreed with that statement in the past efforts from him that I've heard. "One Woman's Live Journey" though, did present some slight concerns.

There have been few live performances mixed for DTS CDs/DVD-Audio, but the only other one that I've listened to (Bonnie Raitt's 2 DTS CD "Road Tested") simply presented re-inforcement of the music from the surrounds; nothing was specifically highlighted by the rear speakers. Although I write frequently about how there really aren't any set "rules" when it comes to mixing music for surround, one doesn't really expect much of anything to be distinctly showcased in the surrounds except for crowd noise.

On "One Woman's Live Journey", the surrounds are mainly asked to provide some close-sounding crowd-noise and reinforcement of the music, but occasionally, other material makes its way back to the surrounds - namely, backing vocals from the singers accompanying Newton-John as well as the occasional instrumental (a saxophone solo during "Not Gonna Give Into It", for example). Personally, I didn't find these infrequent touches distracting or irritating, but I can see where some might find this unnecessary during a live presentation. Otherwise, the sound was positioned nicely; Newton-John's vocals were nicely offered, mainly spread across the front three speakers and not sounding "far off", as the vocals on some live albums seem to occasionally sound. Again, crowd noise sounds nice and close, adding to the "live" feel of the performance.

The DVD-Audio 5.1 presentation provided stellar audio quality. Instruments sounded crisp and detailed, clearly occupying the listening space and not becoming overshadowed. Newton-John's vocals as well as those of the back-up singers sounded crisp and clear. Overall, it's a great recording of a high-energy concert from the singer, with hits like "Not Gonna Give In", "Summer Nights", "Magic" and especially a rockin' version of "You're the One That I Want" sounded superb.

Extras: Photo gallery and credits.

Final Thoughts: An intense and fun performance from the famed singer, "One Woman's Live Journey" goes through a wealth of tunes from Newton-John's career. Slight concerns with the presentation aside, audio quality from the DVD-Audio 5.1 presentation was splendid and fans should certainly be pleased.
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