The DVD is very rich with music, live stage appearances, and taped dialog. It fully explores the period, and provides very deep insight into what made Morrison the type of artist that he was, and how he walked the line between creating artistic works and popular music. His Astral Weeks, which, while regarded as one of the best albums of all time (#2 on Mojo's list and #19 on Rolling Stone's), would have seen him starve to death for lack of sales. On the other hand he could churn out Top 40 hits when he needed to: "Gloria," "Brown-eyed Girl," "Moondance," "Domino," and many, many others, which kept food on the table.
Even as he walked that line, his concerts stayed true to his music. They turned even his pop songs into events that, by all accounts, were memorable and one of a kind. The critics, to a person, all seem to respect both the man and the artist.
I like most of the Under Review series, but I found Van Morrison: Under Review 1964-1974 one of the very best because of its mix of music, dialogue, and an ability to get to the soul of the artist. The quality of the video is pretty good for concert videos from the early 70's. There are some American Bandstand clips from around 1967 with Morrison doing "Brown-eyed Girl," and audio recordings of him reflecting on different periods.
All in all I thought that Van Morrison: Under Review 1964-1974 was incredibly well done and remarkably insightful. I can wholeheartedly recommend this video to anyone, especially Van Morrison fans.
Panel of Experts
- Jim Rothermael - A member of Morrison's famous Caledonia Soul Orchestra, which many consider his greatest backing band, and who played on albums such as Veedon Fleece
- Gavin Martin – Music academic and journalist for NME and Mojo
- Sam Smyth - award winning writer and Belfast journalist
- Johnny Rogan – Biographer: Van Morrison: A Portrait of the Artist (1984), Van Morrison: No Surrender (2006)
- Steve Turner – Biographer: Van Morrison: Too Late to Stop Now (1993)
- John Wilde – Journalist for Q and Mojo
- Nigel Williamson – Author and journalist for Uncut, Guardian, and Rough Guides books
- Extended Interviews
- The Interactive Van Morrison Challenge
- Meet the Panel – Contributor Biographies