"Finally the definitive Aloha from Hawaii"
Reviewed by Marc Haegeman
2004 will go down into history as one of the years that Elvis fans were spoilt by a stream of remarkable releases. One of the highlights (along with the ?68 Comeback DVDs) is definitely the "Elvis, Aloha from Hawaii" Deluxe Edition double DVD-set which assembles about everything connected to Elvis' historical television special in January 1973, at the time beamed throughout the world by satellite.
In fact, this new set brings 3 full length concerts: the rehearsal concert filmed on January 12, the actual concert from two days later, and that same concert as it was edited for the US television broadcast in April 1973. All are finally presented in their complete form and unlike previous home video issues none of the songs are missing.
Soundwise the set is a marvel. The remix is absolutely thrilling, with enhanced clarity and detail, and there is choice between Dolby stereo and Dolby 5.1 ? why no DTS? Even though it surpasses all previous video efforts, the image quality is slightly less satisfying, especially in the rehearsal concert where the horizontal bands gliding over the screen bottom to top, are at times still quite visible. The completely re-edited January 14th concert fares a whole lot better, though, with superior lighting and more vibrant color. In matters of picture sharpness we have never seen better either.
As a bonus we get 17 minutes of the raw, uncut ?Elvis arrives? sequence, part of which opened the TV broadcast, as well as the five post-concert insert songs, often in different takes. I wonder though if we needed to have disc 1 started with the ?Elvis arrives? sequence, as this is material for die hard fans only. (There is an error in my disc as the image jumps after a few minutes to the beginning of the concert).
All in all, a fantastic set, nicely packaged in a three-fold digi-pack and including an informative booklet, which no Elvis aficionado can (or should) live without. Bound to give more than a few hours of listening and watching pleasure. Thanks BMG!
? 2004 Marc Haegeman