Fleetwood Mac - Rumors
Warner Music // DVD Audio // $19.98 // May 29, 2001
Review by Buzz Burgess | posted April 2, 2003
M U S I C
A U D I O
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A D V I C E
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R E V I E W S
Graphical Version

PLEASE NOTE: This is a DVD-Audio disc which is playable on most DVD players as well as all DVD-Audio players. A DVD-Audio player will make all sound options on this disc available for listening.

 

A Look at DVD-Audio
Great sonics, six-channel capability, and added features to your favorite music albums.

First, there were albums on vinyl, then we had CDs, and now there's something called DVD-Audio. What's the difference? A lot! DVD-A is the latest way to hear multichannel, audiophile-quality albums in your home, using your DVD or DVD-Audio player. A DVD-A can hold up to seven times the data of a normal CD, which results in added features and better sound. Also, with its sampling rate higher than that of average CDs (up to 192 kHz, whereas most CDs get 44.1 kHz), you may hear a lot of details in music on a DVD-A that you'd never discover on an average CD. And, since nearly all DVD-As are engineered for multichannel/surround-sound listening (using five or six speakers), with the right equipment, you'll be able to hear your favorite music in breathtaking surround sound.

Equipment Needed
First off, DVD-Audios will not play on normal CD players. You'll need a DVD-Audio player in order to fully capture the capabilities of these discs. A receiver with 5.1 analog inputs and five speakers (left, center, right, left surround, right surround, and a subwoofer) should also be used to capture the surround-sound capabilities of DVD-As. While pure DVD-As will not play on standard DVD players, most releases (including all the titles produced by Warner, Atlantic, and Elektra) contain a Dolby Digital surround-sound mix, making them playable on any DVD player. Though these discs are primarily audio-only, you'll be best off using them in conjunction with your TV, so you can watch the additional onscreen features (see below) and navigate the menus with ease. It's all a little complicated, but music-loving home theater enthusiasts won't be disappointed!

Improved Sound
Thanks to a higher sampling rate than that of both standard DVDs and CDs, DVD-As have an incredibly detailed sound. And, when played through a proper home-theater setup with five or six channels (speakers), you'll get to hear your favorite music in a whole new light--in surround sound. Depending on the remastering, the effect of surround sound on your favorite album can be subtle or dramatic, but generally speaking, every DVD-Audio sounds better than its standard CD counterpart.

Additional Onscreen Features
The added onscreen features available on DVD-Audios vary from title to title. DVD-As often have extra unreleased tracks, photo slide shows of the artist performing, song lyrics, music videos, and interviews. But don't expect to get footage of a full concert or videos for every track; DVD-As devote the bulk of their space to high-quality audio-only music.

 

The DVD
Fleetwood Mac "Rumours"
Region 0
Advanced Resolution Six-Channel Surround Sound - DVD Audio Players.
Advanced Resolution Stereo (96kHz) - DVD Audio Players.
Dolby Digital & DTS 5.1 Surround Sound - DVD Video Players.
Bonus Material: "Making Of " audio-only interviews and image gallery.

Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours," is one of the biggest-selling albums in music history, the most celebrated album from one of the most popular rock groups of all time. It was originally released in 1977, a time when the trials and tribulations of the band and their emotions spilled over into the music.

On this DVD-Audio disc, comes a new multi-channel remix involving many members of the original production team including Ken Caillat, James Stone, Rich Fowler, and Bob Ludwig. This conversion from 24-track analog format has been remixed with care and precision to get the most possible from the limited source material. The result is sound that is remarkably better than that of the CD, due in part to the leaps in digital audio technology since the 1980's. The guess is that the 24-track original was pulled directly from the multitrack into a high-end Analog/Digital conversion system and processed and mixed digitally thereafter. The end product was mastered by the expertise of Bob Ludwig, from which many great-sounding DVD-music discs result. Good mastering is an art in itself.

Added to the album lineup is the previously unreleased studio track "Silver Springs," recorded during the "Rumours" sessions but not included on the original album due to time constraints.

The disc's only bonus material is the "Making Of" section, an audio-only presentation with a few still images. The members of the band discuss each track while the songs, without vocals, play in the background.

I didn't hear too much to be concerned with. There are some spots where the vocals are a bit weak and the instrumentals a bit too strong. A couple instances where the compression was moderately apparent, but overall the album is very solid and a good addition to a DVD-Audio collection.

The format of DVD-A hasn't to this point, included a lot of video on these offerings. The same is true in this case and is really an enhanced CD with a still shot during each one of the songs. No video footage present.

1. Second Hand News
2. Dreams
3. Never Going Back Again
4. Don't Stop
5. Go Your Own Way
6. Silver Springs
7. The Chain
8. You Make Loving Fun
9. I Don't Want To Know
10. Oh Daddy
11. Gold Dust Woman
12. Songbird

The subject of countless books and documentaries, 1977 Grammy Album of the Year, "Rumours" is the 6th most successful recording of all time, selling more than 30 million copies and riding for 30 weeks at #1 on the U.S. album charts. It contained the international hits "Don't Stop", "Dreams", "Go Your Own Way and "The Chain".

 

The Sound
The 24-track masters of this extremely popular album were given to the engineers who originally recorded the album. With these, they remixed it for 5.1 and asked the band for a contribution to the project, resulting in a wonderful example of a DVD Audio album by Ken Caillat and folks at 5.1 Entertainment in Los Angeles.

The disc includes Dolby Digital surround on the DVD-V area, plus stereo and surround 96 kHz, 24-bit mixes in the DVD-Audio section.

Appearing on track 6 is an song not included on the first CD by Stevie Nicks' composition called "Silver Springs". It's a wonderful track and fits nicely with the other compositions on the DVD. One song of the entire set had to be dropped from the vinyl album due to time limitations of that format and "Silver Springs" was that song. Luckily we now have it on the DVD-A. "Songbird," originally in track 6, was moved to track 12. Other than those two changes, the play order is the same as the original.

The stereo 96kHz remixes are full of life and detail with clarity of the top end, power in the bass and a low noise floor. The surround front mixes are as wonderful and natural as the stereo versions. It is simply presented without any undue added effects.

The disc starts the playlist on insertion without the need of navigating menus for those of you who prefer to listen with the video off.

 

The Menu
Playlist
Unique static sepia pic for each track selection listing title and author.

Making of Rumours
Commentary, over each track where background music is present but not the vocals, of band members musing over its conception and development, through to the final production. Viewable are static sepia pics of lyric and track sheets for each track selection along with a list of the instruments used.

Credits

 

Summary
A great addition to any collection. Better than the original due to the wonderful job of the original crew in remixing and mastering of this classic album. Fleetwood Mac is a great group and if you haven't already, don't forget to check out other albums by them and their various artists including, Spencer/Kirwan, Green (1968-1969); Kirwan/McVie/Welch (1971-1972) and Welch and McVie (1973-1974).



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