"Frozen Alive"

(MVD/Metal Mind)

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RATING: 8/10

If you were wanting a general idea of what to expect from OBITUARY's "Frozen Alive" DVD, then take a gander at the review of GRAVE's "Enraptured". By that I mean that both are Metal Mind DVDs, a label that has gotten rather proficient at the live concert DVD game. The centerpiece is the show itself, which is professionally filmed and recorded, while the bonus material includes generally informative interviews with the members and a video or two. With that little synopsis out of the way we can dive right into the meat of the matter.

Filmed at the Stodola Club in Warsaw, Poland on August 24, 2006, OBITUARY's performance is nothing short of classic. Though sound quality never seems to be a problem on a Metal Mind release, the quality on "Frozen Alive" is especially good and better than the somewhat cavernous sound on GRAVE's "Enraptured". Playing a whopping 23-song set, the quintet is on top of its game and clearly loving every minute of it, which always makes the experience more enjoyable for the viewer. As tight as the rest of the members are though, it is vocalist John Tardy that is a veritable monster! The guy is on! Stalking the stage with a constant snarl on his face and that flowing mane of hair, Tardy sounds great and delivers the goods song after song. As for the set list, you pretty much get everything you could ever want from an OBITUARY show, including several from the newest "Frozen in Time" platter and classics like "Chopped in Half" and show-closer "Slowly We Rot". I was a little disappointed that that "Don't Care" and "Final Thoughts" from "World Demise" were not included, but you can't please everyone. The bottom line is that the performance is damn near flawless and makes the DVD a mandatory purchase for fans.

As stated above, the bonus material is predictable, but mostly worthwhile and not filled with too much junk. You learn a little about the band's history and get some "what are they doing now" action from the two interview segments, one with Frank Watkins and Trevor Peres, the other with John and Donald Tardy. Also included are videos for "Insane" and "On the Floor" (world premiere in fact), the latter including some very cool crash footage from car races. A so-so (production-wise) Donald Tardy drum solo clip from a performance in Romania is included as well. Finally, "The Making of 'Insane'" is a mediocre behind-the-scenes look at a video shoot, while "Backstage in Poland" is literally the guys hanging out backstage and is pretty much a throwaway.

Most folks that buy the DVD will do so because he or she is a fan of the band and wants to add a live performance to the collection. Assuming you don't care one way or the other about the bonus material (though the interviews and videos are just fine), you'll get your money's worth from "Frozen Alive" and will be amazed at how fresh the veteran band looks on stage.


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