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Music DVD Review: Method Man and Redman – Live In Paris

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With scatterbrained presentation and slapdash direction, what could have served as a nice cocktail snack for Method Man and Redman’s soon-to-be-released Blackout 2 is just a weak, weird concert DVD.

Live In Paris captures the vigorous duo at a 2006 show. The effort is there from both Meth and Red, as the pair puts in an energetic and varied set for the crowd. Hits from Blackout! are showcased, including “Da Rockwilder” and “Y.O.U.,” along with some work from their respective solo careers. A few Wu-Tang numbers are thrown in for good measure.

But while the playlist looks exciting on paper, there’s something off about the DVD’s presentation.

For starters, many of the songs never get past the first chorus. Only a handful of them, seven out of the 26 tracks, actually exceed the three-minute-mark with the 4:30 intro being one of them and DJ Dyce’s scratching being another. This leads to the momentum of great cuts like Redman’s “Blow Your Mind” coming to an oft-abrupt end in mid-flow. You can almost sense the energy being zapped from the room.

The direction of the concert also leaves a lot to be desired. The filmmaker’s idea of technique appears to be locked in the notion of replay-type zooms, freezes, and wacky out-of-focus shots. It gives the whole production a very start-and-stop kind of feel, once again cutting the flow of the concert off at the knees.

Method Man’s mic often seems to fade in and out, leading to numerous moments in which one wonders what he said. In the first few songs, the mix is terrible and Redman’s vocals are much, much louder than Meth’s.

The crowd’s energy is quite good throughout the set, however, and that helps save some of the weirder moments. The director appears to swerve off into psychedelic music video territory at the start of “Smash Sumthin’,” for instance, and when we come back to reality the audience is going nuts for some reason.

At other intervals, the crowd responds to something that was said but the sound on the DVD is so bad that we aren’t quite sure what that was.

It’s too bad that Live In Paris turns out to be such a clunker because Method Man and Redman certainly do make some great music together. Their energy and volatility is off the chain, but this DVD does little to capture that and offers up an entirely second-rate, careless production. Save your money.

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