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Live 8 DVD analysis Print E-mail
Written by Dave Carlin   
Thursday, 19 January 2006

The official DVD of the Live 8 concerts, held in July, and featuring the historic reunion between Roger Waters and Pink Floyd, was released on November 7th. The quality of the DVD, the proceeds of which go to charity, has impressed many people. For those who've not seen it yet, it included a nice sequence in the extras of the band in their rehearsal studio for Wish You Were Here, and of each band member talking about the reunion.

One of the things that a number of people have assumed was that the Floyd concert footage was broadly the same (if not identical) to that broadcast on the BBC.

However, our friend Dave Carlin noticed a number of differences, and ended up doing a full analysis of the band's live segment, comparing the BBC and official DVD footage and timings.

Live 8 DVD
Live 8 DVD cover
Dave looked at the timings first, where less of a difference is found.

TV version: Opening Chord of Breathe - 0:41’
DVD version:     Opening Chord of Breathe - 1:02’
TV version: Total Length: 23:43’
DVD version: Total Length: 23:54’

The timings above show that although the official version is, overall, only 11 seconds longer, it is very slightly (and insignificantly) edited between Money and WYWH, and again just before the final walk off. Each edit is only several seconds. More importantly though, it does feature an extra 21 seconds of the heartbeat intro before Breathe, including “... must've been mad for f****n years...” and no voice over comments from presenters. So overall, more music and less audience cheering.

The difference though between the two versions, in terms of footage used, is significant. In total, there are over 50 different shots and angles used throughout the full 24 minutes of the official DVD release that are different to the broadcast version.

Dave synched them up and ran them on-screen, side-by-side. The majority of the time the footage is identical, but different shots and camera angles are used throughout each track. For example, there are over 21 different shots/angles within Money.

Different footage is used more frequently in the first three tracks and although Comfortably Numb does contain some different shots, there aren’t quite as many but there is a significantly longer shot held on Waters during his vocals.

Dave singled this out as an example: the full-screen, extreme close-up of the bright red Live 8 wrist band (on the TV version at approximately 4 minutes, 10 seconds) is not in the DVD version:

Live 8 capture 1TV Version: 4:10’ [...good to warm my bones beside the fire...] close up of red wrist band & pale blue slide guitar [Tim Renwick’s].
Live 8 capture 2DVD Version: 4:31’ [...good to warm my bones beside the fire...] close-up of David Gilmour’s black guitar.
The variations of camera shots and angles are noticeable when watching the versions independently of each other, but the full extent of the variation is much more apparent when viewing both versions side-by-side.

Our thanks to Dave for his analysis, which we hope you find interesting. For those who have yet to buy it, the 4 DVD set can be ordered through the following special Amazon links: UK/Elsewhere, US/International, Canada, France, or Germany.

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