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Bonamassa, Joe: An Acoustic Evening at the Vienna Opera House (DVD)

Ah Joe Bonamassa…the guy can do no wrong.

What a great concept…acoustic performance of some of your greatest hits and covers with a band of true virtuosos, all gathered together at one of the world's premier venues, the Vienna Opera House. A concert 'in-the-round', and 'to-the-sky', with Bonamassa on acoustic guitar and vocals; Gerry O'Connor, on Irish banjo and fiddle; Mats Wester, on nyckelharpa and mandola; Arlan Schierbaum, on harmonium, accordion, baby piano and glockenspiel; and Lenny Castro, on percussion.

What a night to remember. Well captured on DVD. Twenty two songs to fill an evening full of the blues and rock. American music takes over one of the hallowed halls of opera and classical music. Yes, it is epic. Joe doesn't need an electric to grind out power. The acoustics he uses will more than satisfy your ear pallet.

Lenny Castro's percussion work is amazing and on each song you can clearly understand why he was a vital part of bringing the power to this show. Wester's mandola adds the perfect high accents to offset Bonamassa's roaring thunder.

The show opens with a blistering acoustic guitar 'Arrival', which would make even Steve Hackett smile. But the show never lets up, through some of my favorite Bonamassa tracks like 'Dust Bowl', 'The Ballad Of John Henry', and 'Slow Train', to some of his best covers of Robert Johnson's 'Stones In My Passway', Tom Waits' 'Jockey Full Of Bourbon', (only wish the piano segment could have been expanded during a live show), and of course the finale Paul Rodgers' 'Seagull'.

Every track a winner…brought to fruition with calm, even handed professionalism full of warmth and emotion. Best DVD of far!

So glad to have received this DVD for review. Now it's your turn. Go out and get this! ;^)

Track Listing:

1. Arrival
2. Palm Trees, Helicopters and Gasoline
3. Jelly Roll
4. Dust Bowl
5. Around The Bend
6. Slow Train
7. Athens To Athens
8. From The Valley
9. The Ballad of John Henry
10. Dislocated Boy
11. Driving Towards the Daylight
12. High Water Everywhere
13. Jockey Full of Bourbon
14. Richmond
15. Stones In My Passway
16. Ball Peen Hammer
17. Black Lung Heartache
18. Mountain Time
19. Woke Up Dreaming
20. Sloe Gin
21. Seagull
22. Goodnight Vienna (Credits)

Added: April 25th 2013
Reviewer: Mark Johnson
Related Link:
Hits: 4568
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Bonamassa, Joe: An Acoustic Evening at the Vienna Opera House (DVD)
Posted by Pete Pardo, SoT Staff Writer on 2013-04-25 10:56:47
My Score:

As impressive as the CD version of this concert is, it's not until you view the DVD, with Joe Bonamassa surrounded by a huge collection of acoustic guitars, and his band members spread out around him, in front of the intimate audience at the Vienna Opera House, that you really appreciate how such a full sound was created during this acoustic performance. Joe pours his heart and soul to all of these songs, whether they be original pieces or covers, and it's a nice change of pace to hear the bluesman offer up a more tender side to his playing.

Haunting, powerful, and emotional...this show is all that and more. Check out Mark's review above for more detailed info, or my review of the CD of the show for that matter, but if you are a fan of Bonamassa you'll certainly want to check this one out. Though he's got many live albums already under his belt, this one is a bit different but no less spectacular.

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