Originally intended to be a concert presentation web-cast (which was cancelled) on September 11, 2001, this Sting performance was still captured in a small, beautiful Tuscany courtyard and is now being released on a CD and this DVD edition. The performance by Sting includes some deeply saddening and moving statements about the horrific tragedy that occured that day, including a dedication of the first song, "Fragile", to those who were affected by the tragedy.
The performance, by Sting and members of his band, is a soulful and beautiful offering of some of Sting's new and old material. Some of them boast a slightly changed feel and tone, such as a delicate and gorgeous performance of "A Thousand Years" and a slightly slower, more mellow, but still very enjoyable performance of "Don't Stand So Close To Me" and a slightly more up-tempo rendition of "If I Ever Lose My Faith In You".
A nearly perfect concert presentation, this DVD offers this wonderful concert with strong audio/video quality as well as a lengthy documentary showing, in detail, the major preparation that Sting and the band had to do to get ready.
2. 1000 years
3. Perfect love gone wrong
4. All this time
Hounds of winter
5. Mad about you
6. Don't stand so close to me
7. When we dance
10. (If you love someone) Set them free
11. Brand new day
12. Fields of gold
13. Moon over Bourbon street
14. If I ever lose my faith in you
15. Every breath you take
Note: This DVD edition also includes bonus performances of "Englishman In New York", an outstanding edition of "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" and "Fill Her Up".
VIDEO: In a pleasant suprise, A & M presents this show in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen. While not a perfect presentation, the concert often looked quite strong and was very enjoyably filmed. Sharpness and detail are quite good, as even though the stage is a little bit dark, every member of the band is easily seen and the backgrounds of the stage are detailed.
Problems are few and far between. No edge enhancement was seen, but I did notice some very light shimmering in some of the backgrounds at times, but nothing that many are going to notice or be bothered by. A tiny trace of pixelation is noticable, but this is also hardly even apparent. Overall, very good and certainly better than expected.
SOUND: The concert is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 and boasts a superb surround presentation. Sting's vocals are presented in the center speaker, while the backing musicians's work is distributed to the front two speakers. Surrounds provide a satisfying amount of musical reinforcement and light crowd sounds.
Audio quality remained terrific throughout the program. Instrumental elements were nicely distributed around the viewer and remained distinct and clear instead of becoming a mess or one element overshadowig the other. Sting's vocals sounded fantastic, coming through with excellent clarity and warmth. "All This Time" is certainly a top-notch recording, made even more enjoyable by the fine work done on this DVD's 5.1 surround presentation.
MENUS:: Enjoyable, animated main menu, complete with music in the background in 5.1.
EXTRAS: Aside from the previously mentioned three additional song performances (which are in Dolby Digital 5.1, as well), we are treated to an excellent and beautifully filmed documentary (which is actually also in 5.1) about the days leading up to the performance. The documentary offers interviews with Sting and other members of the band and also captures rehersals (including a presentation of "Desert Rose"), as well as the kind of preparation that had to be done to bring in the film crew and other members of the production to capture to the show. For those who want to watch the entire version in the show of a certain song, that is an option on occasion during the program when a small image pops up.
The documentary also includes Sting's thoughts about the horrific events of 9-11, and the piece also captures the discussions on whether or not they should play that Sting and members of the band had after they found out the events occured. The documentary runs 70 minutes.
Final Thoughts: "All This Time" captures some of Sting's finest songs presented in new, moving and engaging ways that are soulful and enjoyable. The DVD edition includes a terrific documentary as well as great audio/video presentation for the show itself. Very highly recommended.