Foreigner: 4
Warner Bros. // DVD Audio // $17.98 // November 22, 2002
Review by Buzz Burgess | posted January 17, 2003
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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.

Expanded & remastered edition of their 1981 release with 2 added bonus 'nearly unplugged' versions of "Juke Box Hero" and "Waiting For A Girl Like You."

This was certainly Foreigners landmark album, where a move came about in 70's rock toward the melodic. Lou Gramm was at his best, his voice solid and energetic on staples like the pulsating "Jukebox Hero", the manic "Urgent" and the fluid romantic ballad "Waiting For a Girl Like You". The remainder of the bulk of the album consists of lesser known, but as good, songs including the coarse "I'm Gonna Win", the electric "Break It Up", rock anthem "Don't Let Go" and the light and floating feel of a "Girl on the Moon". Better than their debut album and immediately following "Head Games", this is viewed by many as their best work. Produced by Robert Lange and written by Mick Jones, with the group down to four members and a multitude of session musicians, "4" was released with perfect timing. It's a fine example of 80's rock and roll.

1. Night Life
2. Juke Box Hero
3. Break It Up
4. Waiting for a Girl Like You
5. Luanne
6. Urgent
7. I'm Gonna Win
8. Woman in Black
9. Girl on the Moon
10. Don't Let Go
11. Juke Box Hero (nearly unplugged)
12. Waiting for a Girl Like You (nearly unplugged)

As with most DVD-A discs, there is little moving video. But what exists is clean and clear. Still shots appear during each song to represent the mood of the music.

First rate, due in part to the enhanced format inherent in this type of format. There really isn't an issue any more of sound quality when dealing with this format in modern times. Bright and clear with very nice enhanced surround effects.

Animated menus with music.
Song Selections with photo stills.
Sound Selections.
- Advanced Resolution Surround Sound - DVD Audio Players
- Advanced Resolution Stereo - DVD Audio Players
- DVD Video Compatable Dolby Digital & DTS 5.1 Surround Sound - DVD Video Players
- Photo Gallery- All DVD Players
- Lyrics - All DVD Players
- Credits

Nothing here. Photo gallery of 15 color stills and song lyrics.

Final Thoughts
Foreigner were at their peak on this album. Considered by many their best album. Top hits such as "Break It Up", "Urgent", "Waiting For A Girl Like You" and "Juke Box Hero" are all time favorites. A must own CD for any who wants a great example of classic 80's rock and roll. Recommend.


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