Jimi Hendrix: Jimi Plays Berkeley 1970 (Blu-ray) 2012 DTS-HD Master Audio


When Jimi Hendrix took the stage at Berkeley's Community Theater for a Memorial Day weekend performance on May 30, 1970, he had only a few more months to live, but he was front and center as one of the biggest symbols of a youth culture that was still rising up in droves to protest all sorts of perceived inequities perpetrated by that amorphous entity known as The Man. 

  This clip below is Audio only no video clip is available to Preview.

    The Concert is Blu-ray 1080P Video & DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 

 Jimi had attained the role of a sort of mystical shaman for that era's youth, ushering them into an era of what was hoped would be Universal Love, but it's instructive to remember that the "real world" kept intruding into that halcyon fantasy. 

In fact only three weeks before Jimi's Berkeley concert, the Kent State shootings had reminded the entire world of the dangers of the burgeoning conflict between young people and the so-called Establishment.

This new extended version of Jimi Plays Berkeley reinstates both welcome and some perhaps unneeded elements. In the latter category, the images of the Berkeley riots which accompanied "Machine Gun" have been reinserted, to varying degrees of impact. (These elements were filmed separately and show considerable wear and tear). On the plus side, snippets of songs not included in the original theatrical exhibition make their debut here, including the aforementioned "Machine Gun", along with "Voodoo Child" and "Hear My Train A-Comin'". The biggest complaint here is the paucity of unedited material, with only "Johnny B. Goode", "The Star Spangled Banner" and "Purple Haze" making it through more or less unaltered. However, all three of these songs show Hendrix in his full throttle, quasi-religiously proselytizing mode, leading his faithful along with growls, squeals and copious feedback from his nearby amp.

The Second Set (1:07:28) contains the entire performance of Jimi's second set at Berkeley on May 30, 1970. This ostensibly audio only supplement plays to some appropriately psychedelic imagery filling the menu screen in 1080p. There are two audio options here, a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track which streams at an average rate of around 5.0 mbps (sometimes a bit more, sometimes a bit less) and an uncompressed LPCM 5.1 mix which holds steady at 6.9 mbps.

The set list features: 

Pass It On (Straight Ahead) 

Hey Baby (New Rising Sun) 

Lover Man 

Stone Free 

Hey Joe 

I Don't Live Today 

Machine Gun 

Foxy Lady 

Star Spangled Banner 

Purple Haze 

Voodoo Child (Slight Return) 

Abe Jacob Interview (HD; 7:51) features reminiscences from Jacob (the menu lists his surname incorrectly as Jacobs), who did sound at the Monterey Pop Festival, as well as a slew of great Broadway shows (the first Broadway show I saw as a kid was Pippin, featuring Jacob's stellar work). Jacob was soon hired to do sound for Hendrix while they were on tour and he has some great, often funny, anecdotes to share

Jimi Plays Berkeley has various lossless audio options for different elements included on the Blu-ray. The actual concert film features both a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix as well as an uncompressed LPCM 2.0 stereo mix. The supplemental audio only Second Set extra features both a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix as well as an uncompressed LPCM 5.1 mix (see Supplemental Features below for more information). All of these audio options feature newly done mixes by longtime Hendrix engineer Eddie Kramer. The LPCM 2.0 mix is probably the closest approximation to the original theatrical sound mix and it is nicely compact, though occasionally hampered by the boisterous audience noise. That audience noise is shuttled to the rear channels in the 5.1 mix, and while it can be distracting at times, it helps to have it in a more "spacious" environment. One way or the other, both of these tracks offer sterling fidelity, with the sometimes actually slightly painful feedback spilling through the sound field and Jimi's guitar maintaining its almost vocal qualities.

 Video

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC

Video resolution: 1080p

Aspect ratio: 1.33:1

Original aspect ratio: 1.37:1

Audio

English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

English: LPCM 2.0

English: LPCM 5.1

English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

English: LPCM 2.0

English: LPCM 5.1 (less) 

Subtitles

None 

(less) 

Discs

25GB Blu-ray Disc

Single disc (1 BD)

Playback

Region A (B, C untested  

Unavailable

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