James Blunt – Chasing Time: The Bedlam Sessions

James Blunt – Chasing Time: The Bedlam Sessions / 2006 Atlantic / 70 Minutes / http://www.jamesblunt.com / http://www.atlanticrecords.com / Reviewed 17 August 2006

Everyone knows who James Blunt is. This is due to the fact that eir song “You’re Beautiful” has been used in a number of commercials and been shown countless time on VH1 and other stations of that ilk. There are a number of reasons why individuals should pick up this DVD if they are fans of Blunt. Obviously, I’m not suggesting that they pick up this DVD if they are not already a fan, but for those people that picked up eir latest album, there are a few things that can only be found here.

Aside from a full concert, there are enough bonus and special features to keep individuals interested for a long time. For example, there is a documentary that attempts to get into Blunt’s head, as well as mini-documentary about each of the videos that Blunt has cut. These videos are also included on this DVD, and there is an interview to top off the extra information on “Chasing Time”. What is great about the live footage is that Blunt is not featured all of the time. Of course, Blunt is the focus of the cameras, but the unsung heroes of the rest of the band are shown at fairly regular intervals. During songs like “High”, Blunt’s vocals and range put eir closer to more storied acts like Dave Matthews. When I say that one should already be a fan before picking up this album, I guess I was a little hasty. If you are a fan of Jack Johnson, John Maher, or Dave Matthews, there is material that individuals will like on here.

The tracks on the live show are easily equivalent to the studio versions, in regard to quality. Of course, there are a number of times where the fans make enough noise for them to be picked up on the DVD< but aside from that, no one would be the wiser is Blunt decided to use the audio from this show to make a new studio CD. The live show ends with Blunt’s version of the Pixies’ classic “Where Is My Mind?”. The backing moaning is spot on but the vocals are much in the same vein as 311’s cover of “Lovesong”. The style is there, but there is a lack of soul that was present in spades in the original. James Blunt is able to put on a show that focuses on eir version of adult contemporary rock. There is little in the way of experimentation or reason for individuals that are not currently fans to pick up this DVD. However, for those individuals that are fans of Blunt’s, there is enough in the way of bonus material to make this purchase a smart one, if not for the documentary and behind the videos alone. The one plus I will give Blunt on this DVD is that “Chasing Time” shows artists what they should include when it comes to creating live show DVDs. Here’s hoping some artists listen and actually start to put a serious amount of information on their DVDs. Rating: 6.0/10

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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