Dreamboat Annie Live is the first release from Shout! Factory’s new “Legendary Albums Live” series, which features famous bands performing their quintessential albums live, in sequence, and in their entirety. The artists will also perform songs by the musicians they were listening to at the time for inspiration and give exclusive interviews. So says the distributor's website.
If this excellent new Heart DVD is any indication of things to come, then this is going to be one hell of a new concert series. I get giddy just thinking about all of the bands and albums I'd love to see given this same treatment. How about Rush doing 2112, AC/DC doing Back In Black, Pearl Jam doing Ten, The Eagles doing Hotel California - I could go on for hours.
I was somewhat let down by Heart's last concert DVD, 2003's Alive In Seattle. The sterile setting looked more like a Vegas lounge act than a rock concert and the performances were uninspired. I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this new DVD. The Wilson sisters were four years older now, each in their mid-50s, and they would be relying on a single album to sustain most of the show. Were the sisters still that good? Was the album ever really that good? I say hell yes to both!
The album in question here is Heart's 1976 debut, Dreamboat Annie. Yet another band I grew up on has passed the 30-year mark. Wow. Although Dreamboat Annie may have been the quintessential album choice for this series - I might have preferred Little Queen though - this was certainly not the quintessential Heart lineup performing it. As with the Alive In Seattle performance, Heart has long been reduced to just Ann and Nancy Wilson and whoever their current backup band is at the time.
The Wilson sisters have always been the face and lifeblood of Heart; so as long as they are both still around, they will always have a legitimate claim to the name in my book. It is a shame, considering that all of the original band members are still around, that they could not have all come together for this 30th anniversary of their celebrated debut.
I wasn't expecting a full-on band reunion, but a few guest performances by some of the original band members would have been nice. The wounds must still run a little too deep between the Fisher brothers and the Wilson sisters, who shared much more than just a bunch of songs back in the day.