Stevie Wonder Live At Last

Featured In Issue 140, May/June 2009

WSR Score5
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
Universal Motown Records
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Not Rated
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Single Side, Dual Layer (BD-50)
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Not Indicated
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Hamish Hamilton
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Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS HD Lossless 5.1, PCM 24/48 2.0
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This is it, the concert special Stevie Wonder fans have waited for! One of the most cherished singer/songwriters of all time performs his stunning live concert experience in London during the rapturously received "Wonder Summer Nights" tour. Captured in high-definition and presented here on Blu-ray Disc™, Stevie is at his very finest, backed by an incredible 14-piece band (including daughter Aisha on backing vocals and featured on "I'm Gonna Laugh You Right Out Of My Life")—captured in pristine high-resolution discrete multichannel audio and presented in lossless DTS-HD Master Audio™. The concert features 29 songs continuously performed. This is a concert event not to be missed! (Gary Reber)

Special features include a 12-page color booklet containing memorable photos of the concert.

The 1.78:1 1080p AVC picture was captured with 13 high-definition video cameras under the masterful direction of Hamish Hamilton. The cameras perfectly penetrate the performance with intimate close-ups that reveal incredible fine facial features and instrumental textures and reflections. The set design and lighting effects are terrific and complement the highly energized music performance. The beat never stops and at times ignites the audience emotionally, as seen in the lively, happy expressions as they groove with the beat. Color fidelity is impressively rendered with fully saturated colors, deep blacks, and warm hues. The pristine imagery is exceptionally three-dimensional and vibrant. This is a fantastic visual treat that puts you on stage with Stevie and his musicians and singers. There is no better place to experience this wonderful concert! (Gary Reber)

The live multichannel discrete audio was mixed by Tim Summerhayes and is presented in pristine lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1-channel discrete. While the Linear PCM stereo track is excellent, the surround music mix is so good that if it does not convince you of the superiority of the lossless DTS® multichannel master audio, then either your system is performance-flawed or you have a hearing problem! This is a mix that is absolutely holosonic® in surround presence, with the energized audience aggressively heard wrapped around you. The sound is full of energy and pushes the SPL to adrenaline levels with rock solid bass. The bass kick drum is solid in the .1 LFE channel. Instrument timbres are clearly heard, and the band's blend is impressive, with the "live" reverb filling the soundfield. Phantom imaging across the soundstage is a precise mirror image of the musicians positioned on stage. The soundstage is nicely stereoized wide and deep, with Stevie up-front, phantom-center supported with a lower-level center channel presence. In the quieter moments, subtle timbres can be heard, with Stevie's beautiful harmonica artistry showcased. The musicians are each featured with solos, in an impressive display of superb musicianship. This is a roaring, rocking concert that will have you tapping your foot or moving you to dance and exuberantly carry on. The musical experience is breathtaking! (Gary Reber)