Thursday, 21 May 2015
JUNKMALES G2 ACOUSTIC STAGE CD/DVD REVIEW
DISCLAIMER - Please note (as per normal) that this review is my personal opinion only and does not necessarily mirror the opinions of all staff at EFUK.
2 Disc set (CD/DVD) recorded in the Czech Republic in 2014. On Universal (Cze). 16 tracks in total. Running order for the DVD and the CD are exactly the same. I'm presuming that the DVD is region 0 as it plays perfectly here in the UK. I'll be concentrating mainly on the DVD on this review. Comes in a plain jewel case with an insert. The insert is pretty good and includes a few high definition colour photos.
There are a few extras on the DVD including a photo slide show and an interview with some back stage video footage which is pretty good.
Ewa looks fantastic throughout (if a touch 'sweaty' at times) and the whole thing is filmed really well. It's a really intimate setting with no real 'stage' to speak of. The audience are really close to the concert which, i'm sure, was pretty special to those that were there. It's more semi acoustic than strictly acoustic as the band switch from acoustic to electric throughout the show. They are also joined by 2 female backing singers and a percussionist. A heavily pregnant Klara Vytiskova from Toxique acts as impromptu MC and joins Ewa for 'Toxique Girls'.
It starts off very well with the first 4 songs benefiting from the re-arrangements but unfortunately it's all a bit downhill from then. 'Toxique Girls' is a bit of fun and i don't really mind it but from then on it dissolves into what i can only describe as a free form Jazz show. I've made my opinion fairly clear on the whole Jazz 'thing' many times so unfortunately it's not for me. If you like that sort of thing you'll probably love it, if not (like me), it's an unpleasant listening experience.
I tried, i really did, to get something from it but was at the point of throwing the disc out of my window when Ewa was joined at one point by a 'beat boxer' (i kid you not).
In the middle of the show BMM and Mels are slight improvements but the reality is that this is not the Ewa i know and love. Not by a very long way. And believe me it really hurts to say these things.
She is clearly enjoying it and it ends with a pretty emotional Sama Sobe.
So there it is. It's not for me. It's unlikely that i'll ever play it again and although it was what i was expecting it's all pretty disappointing. As far as i'm concerned this Jazz experiment is just a vanity project for Ewa and i hope that normal service resumes as soon as possible. I will find it extremely difficult to continue doing what i do for Ewa if we get much more of this. I don't understand it and don't particularity want to understand it.
A couple of other thoughts sprung to mind whilst i was watching the DVD.
We are all aware that in the past Ewa has been (unfairly) accused of being, at times, 'shouty'? She has a very strong voice and without the full backing of the band some times this happens on the DVD. It's a little more evident on the CD. Or perhaps it's just the style of the songs that makes me feel that.
I also wondered about the band? We don't really know what influence the band have (if any) on decisions that are made regarding Ewa's career. I find it very difficult to believe that they are all happy with the direction things are going in. Are all of them Jazz fans? I very much doubt it?
Sorry if this is a pretty negative review. I thought about not posting it at all but have to be honest. As fans i think we are entitled to our opinions. Good or bad?
Comments etc are more than welcome.