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Energizing gem with three little flaws - 85%

kluseba, December 18th, 2011

For many years, Metallica didn't release any live release but during the last years, they even release too many DVDs, Live EPs and similar stuff and it's hard to point out which of all those releases is worth to be purchased and which one is not. Even though many of these release are officially only available in a limited number of countries, there are many exceptions and you can still easily purchase the stuff on the internet. The DVD we have here has officially been released in a couple of countries in Latin America but I have been able to buy this in my local music store for a good price. Without a doubt, this is a worthy and quite intimate release and maybe one of the best choices for you among the other stuff that has been released recently.

The sound quality is excellent on this release and the images are pretty good as well even though I have seen better productions. The Mexican crowd is energizing and incredible as always. The stage decoration is almost inexistent but that has almost always been the case for Metallica. The performance they deliver in here is so energizing that you simply don't need anything else to change your mind and feel the atmosphere. The only negative point is that the camera cuts too often and the live document is especially filled with too many quick zooms that make the whole spectacle difficult to watch. But once you're used to this, it gets better as time goes by.

In my opinion, the set list is also very well chosen. With the exception of "Load" and "Saint Anger", a track from every other regular studio album album is performed on here plus a good cover version of Killing Joke's "The Wait". The choice for the tracks from the last album is pretty excellent and includes the incredible high speed thrash monster "All Nightmare Long", the great classic half ballad "The Day That Never Comes" that kicks off very slow, calm and atmospheric to finish with a true blast and the slower and more groove orientated banger "Broken, Beat And Scarred". These tracks are probably my favourite ones from the last output along with "Cyanide". Apart of that, many classics from Metallica's discography are included and the concert even kicks off with three songs of the masterpiece "Ride The Lightning" which is one of my favourite Metallica albums. The only thing I might criticize on here is that the recordings of the tracks are not from the same day and concert but are a mixture of the three different shows at Foro Sol in Mexico City. You can see that the colours of the guitars, the clothes and the crowd changes if you pay enough attention to this document. The performances are still amazing but I would have preferred the even more energizing flow of one single evening shot in Mexico than this very good but not perfect and somewhat odd potpourri of different show snippets and documentary passages which is the final result.

This DVD also features some filming material from behind the scenes of the concert featuring interview passages with band members and fans and a couple of great and intimate impressions where we can learn more about the band's ideology and pride and the passion of their fans. As the concert itself is truly glorious, the name of this recording is indeed very well chosen.

The only other negative point is that these passages are packed within the songs of the concert and can't really be seen apart of it as an extra. This hasn't been the best choice because it strangely interrupts the flow of the concert. Even though both concert and the documentary passages are interesting and appealing, the mix of both of them doesn't fit together in my opinion. Iron Maiden have shown with "Flight 666" how it should be made and Metallica should have released one DVD with the concert only and another one with the documentary passages.

In the end, we only have three little negative points but many positive aspects concerning this release. I would still chose this document rather than "Français Pour Une Nuit". The set list is outstanding, the crowd is simply amazing and the band is in absolute top form. Note that a limited special edition of this release even contains a second DVD with more songs that have been shot during several days at the same location. A few rare and interesting gimmicks have been played and it's a sad thing that Metallica didn't decide to release this extended edition all around the world but I guess this was strange management decision to make more money and appeal to more collectors and diehard fans.