Farewell I Tour: Live from Melbourne
First Appeared in The Music Box, July 2005, Volume 12, #7
Written by John Metzger
In 1994, the Eagles reunited with the tongue-in-cheek proclamation that hell had frozen over. A decade later, the ensemble announced its dissolution with an equal amount of humor by dubbing the final chapter of this particular expedition "Farewell I." Recorded last November over the course of several nights at Australia’s Rod Laver Arena, the group’s new double-DVD Farewell I Tour: Live from Melbourne provides fans with a precise look at what they can expect to hear as the collective winds through its remaining series of concerts, which likely will conclude in October 2005. For the record, neither the song selection nor the performances are terribly surprising, but then again, the Eagles never has been a band that took very many risks in concert. Indeed, for the most part, the live renditions of its songs are pristine and polished, and although they are sprinkled with tasteful accoutrements — the horns that dot One of These Nights or the fiddle that underscores Peaceful Easy Feeling, for example — they mostly adhere quite closely to their studio counterparts. Likewise, the quartet of Don Henley, Glen Frey, Joe Walsh, and Timothy B. Schmit provides a nostalgic examination of its back catalogue by offering an endless stream its best-known songs — Hotel California, Already Gone, Lyin’ Eyes, Take It Easy, and Desperado among them. Although its set list is also peppered with several solo selections — such as Henley’s The Boys of Summer, Frey’s You Belong to the City, and Walsh’s Rocky Mountain Way — the Eagles never digs any deeper than its various greatest hits packages, save for a pair of new compositions — No More Cloudy Days and One Day at a Time. In other words, the 29-song, nearly 3-hour show essentially serves as a comprehensive career retrospective, albeit one that is presented with a brief compilation of interviews and boasts the crisp clarity of a DTS-encoded, 5.1 surround sound mix. In fact, it’s the latter embellishment that makes Farewell I Tour: Live from Melbourne so notable. By utilizing the complete sonic spectrum, the Eagles has reformulated its material to create a striking, multi-dimensional experience, and as a result, its classic rock gems never before have been articulated quite as well as they are on this collection.
Farewell I Tour: Live from Melbourne is available
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box