The Moody Blues

Moody Blues [EP DVD]

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Fans take note -- it may be the psychedelic-era Moody Blues depicted on the cover art of this DVD EP, but it's the earlier, R&B-based version of the group that is more heavily featured on the disc itself. In their more familiar psychedelic/art rock incarnation, the Moody Blues never made that many television appearances, whereas the original lineup was somewhat more accessible to TV, which explains why two of the three songs featured here are by the original lineup featuring Denny Laine on lead guitar and vocals and Clint Warwick on bass. Those are also the most interesting songs here, as they are actual live performances rather than lip-synced appearances, showing the bandmembers having a good deal of fun with the material even if they are patterning everything after their studio performances. Mike Pinder is the featured vocalist on "Really Haven't Got the Time," while he is all but invisible on "Bye Bye Bird." The third track, "Nights in White Satin," from 1968, has been used in various documentaries and is very familiar, featuring the Justin Hayward/John Lodge lineup of the band miming to the familiar single -- it's the least interesting part of this disc, which offers a total of about 11 minutes of music for 12 dollars retail. That wouldn't be so bad if the disc played the songs straight through, but instead it returns to the same distracting menu after each number. On the positive side, the audio has been mastered nice and loud, and the video quality is extraordinary; balancing that out is a totally wasted pop-up video option that's more dull than one ever imagined such a feature could be (and also requires that each song be accessed one by one). There's also a stream of promotional clips from other releases in the series, which are interesting but also seem to take up far more space on the disc than the tracks that one is presumably buying. On a more positive note, the two-layer menu is easy to use without any confusion.