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Megadeth: A Night In Buenos Aires
Shot in Argentina at Obras Stadium on October 9th, 2005, Megadeth: A Night In Buenos Aires captures a full ninety-five minute set from the long running California-based thrash legends fronted for the better part of four decades by guitarist/vocalist Dave Mustaine. Joined, at this point in the band's history, by Glen Drover on lead guitar, James McDonough on bass and Shawn Drover behind the drum kit, Mustaine and company are in fine form here.
Before the show starts we get to see the band interacting with fans and getting ready for the concert, offering thoughts about how great the fans are and how much they appreciate them. We also see them prep for their flight and get mobbed on the taxi ride to their hotel. At one point the band goes outside with some acoustic guitars and plays for the fans to let them sing along.
After two minutes of that, however, the show proper start, the band opening the set with a ripping version of Blackmail The Universe before then moving into Set The World Afire, Wake Up Dead, In My Darkest Hour, She Wolf, Reckoning Day, A Tout Le Monde, Hangar 18 & Return To Hanger, I'll Be There, Tornado Of Souls, Trust, Something That I'm Not, Kick The Chair, Coming Home, Symphony Of Destruction, Peace Sells and eventually closing the show with a great version of Holy Wars… The Punishment Due.
The band gives their all here, with Mustaine snarling his way through each track with some obvious enthusiasm and a whole lot of energy. All four members seem to be feeding off of the insanely fervent crowd all of whom look to be having a seriously good time (the crowd reaction shots in this video are some of the highlights, these guys are way into it!). The stage show is solid, lots of dramatic and seriously intense lighting is used throughout the set to create some atmosphere, while the video monitors on the back and sides of the stage, obviously there for the sake of the people at the back of the massive venue, provide some welcome scale and alternate angles.
Production values are good. Shot with multiple cameras, the camerawork goes a great job of capturing all four members of the band with lots of close up shots showing them off in action, but we get plenty of wide and medium shots that show off the entirety of the stage and the crowd in front of it. There are also some nice high angle shots employed throughout that help to make things look a bit more interesting and dynamic than your average concert video. Clearly quite a bit of effort was put into capturing the concert properly.
Not surprisingly, it's the last three tracks form the show that really get both the band and the audience fired up. As soon as the opening riffs of Symphony Of Destruction come out of the speakers, the audience erupts, singing along to every word. This energy carries over into Peace Sells, after which we cut back to footage of Mustaine and company doing their acoustic thing really quickly. From here, the show closes out with Holy Wars…, which pretty much brings the house down, just as a closer at a good metal show should, Mustaine giving the crowd a heart-felt thank you before walking off the stage to the sounds of Sid Vicous covering Frank Sinatra's My Way.
Cleopatra Records brings Megadeth: A Night In Buenos Aires to region free Blu-ray framed at 1.78.1 widescreen. Taking up 19.3Gbs on a 25GB disc, the feature, presented in 1080i high definition, looks more a DVD than a true high definition presentation. That image is soft and murky with visible compression artifacts noticeable throughout. There's aliasing and edge enhancement noticeable throughout and the picture quality never even comes close to taking proper advantage of the format. That said, it's perfectly watchable, it just looks like a DVD, so keep your expectations in check.
Audio options are provided in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound or a Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo options (there are no lossless options here, which is a disappointment). The 5.1 mix is the way to go if you've got the surround sound system to handle it, though both mixes sound a fair bit thin, bass could definitely be stronger and more powerful here. Otherwise, the audio is clean and well-mixed, each different instrument coming through distinctly and with good clarify. There are no problems with any hiss or distortion. This sounds decent, if not perfect, for a lossy mix.
The only extra on the disc is an alternate version of Symphony of Destruction that runs for four and a half minutes. Menus and song selection are also provided.
Megadeth: A Night In Buenos Aries sees the band giving a really strong performance but the presentation quality isn't where you'd expect a Blu-ray to be in terms of the picture and the sound. Still, fans of the band will enjoy this based simply on the quality of the show, which really does see the band tear it up for an audience that is hanging off every note. Recommended for Megadeth fans, a decent rental for heavy metal devotees curious about the show.
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.