Holiday Gift Alert! Music Blu-ray Review: The Rolling Stones - Voodoo Lounge Uncut

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Back in the summer of '94, The Rolling Stones release Voodoo Lounge, their first all-new studio album in five years—also their first following the departure of founding member and bassist Bill Wyman. Darryl Jones began his tenure as the Stones' regular recording and touring bassist, a gig that continues to this day (despite never having been made an official member of the band). Naturally there was a tour to support the new album—one that boasted a massive, multi-level set—which yielded a live VHS/DVD release titled Voodoo Lounge Live.

The concert presented on said video release was taped during a Miami stop at Joe Robbie Stadium (now Hard Rock Stadium), November 25, 1994. Previously broadcast as a pay-per-view event, the show boasted several guest stars and was introduced by Whoopi Goldberg. Great show, peppered with strong material from the then-new album, but here's the catch. It offered a highly-truncated version of the concert: just 17 tunes from the concert's 27-song set list. Now fans can enjoy the full concert with Eagle Rock's new Voodoo Lounge Uncut, a Blu-ray set that also includes the full show on two audio CDs.

This is essentially the same format we've seen over the last few years from the Stones via their From the Vault series. For whatever reasons, Voodoo Lounge Uncut is not branded under that heading, but for all intents and purposes it fits right into the series. Keep in mind, the concert was originally taped on standard-definition tape nearly 25 years ago. Visually it's a bit soft, but Eagle Rock has done what they can with it. It is also available on standard DVD (and probably looks about the same), but if you truly want to feel what Mick Jagger means when he sings "You Got Me Rocking," get the Blu-ray and crank the lossless DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround sound (and the LPCM stereo track is no slouch either).

The whole show, including the brief Goldberg intro, is spread out over two CDs for listening-on-the-go. Highlights in this concert include Sheryl Crow guesting for a ferocious "Live With Me" (would've preferred her voice a bit more up in the mix), Robert Cray helping out on "Stop Breaking Down," and Bo Diddley on "Who Do You Love." And if you, like me, consider Voodoo Lounge the greatest post-Tattoo You Stones record, you're in luck: "Sparks Will Fly," "You Got Me Rocking," "I Go Wild," and (especially) Keith Richards' "The Worst" all sit beautifully alongside time-tested classics.

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Chaz Lipp is a Las Vegas-based musician and freelance writer. His new jazz album 'Good Merlin' is now available.

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