Archive:d DVD (Delirious.org.uk)
Last modified: 03 Jun 2003
Author: Dave Wood
Date: 03 Jun 2003
Fans of Delirious? have been asking for a DVD for years now. Previously, visual releases have been limited to UK-only VHS videos: 'View From The Terraces' (1998) and 'Promode' (2000). So with the ever increasing popularity of the DVD video format, it was only a matter of time before the first ever Delirious? DVD hit the shops.
Whilst this is the first d:VD, it may not necessarily be the first time you will have seen the footage. Dedicated fans who had previously purchased both 'View From' and 'Promode' will notice a large similarity between those videos and this DVD. This is no attempt to con you however, since the DVD's very name should be enough to hint at what it contains. 'Archive:d' does exactly what it says on the, erm, plastic cover. It is a collection of archived Delirious? visual materials. The main part of the DVD is made up of a combination of those first two Delirious? video releases.
So, everyone already owns the video, and nobody will buy the DVD, right? Wrong! And for several reasons. Firstly, those two videos were only ever available to fans in the UK. Over in North America they use a different video format which meant that fans couldn't import the videos. Now for the first time, fans in the USA and Canada can buy this region-free DVD and finally get to see what they've been missing out on. So that is our American friends sorted out, but what about the dedicated British fans? Well, you won't want to miss out on 'Archive:d' because along with everything that was on the two videos, there is a generous helping of new features which will become clear as soon as you slide the disc into your DVD player.
But before you even get that far, 'Archive:d' follows the usual pattern for Delirious' releases of being packaged in a slightly unusual manner. Whether it be CDs in tin-cans or cardboard cases, the design department at Delirious' record company like to do things a little differently. The 'Archive:d' DVD case follows suit. It is transparent! The clear plastic case allows the brightly coloured orange disc to show through the front. Infact the white markings on the cover combine with the disc inside to form the DVD's clever artwork.
With the DVD loaded, you are welcomed with the Furious? Records logo in 3D . This is immediately followed by a piece of video footage that has become known as the 'Mission Impossible intro Sequence'. It was filmed for the recent 'Fire Tour' and features each of the band members as secret agents in various strange locations. Highly entertaining before you even got to the DVD's Main Menu.
The purple coloured Main Menu has five options: Videos, View From The Terraces, Promod:e, Live Visuals and D:Facts. Each option leads you to a new menu, and each seperate menu has a different Delirious? song playing in the background. The first menu, Videos, gives you a list of all 11 of the Delirious? promo pop videos: Deeper, Promise, Sanctify, See The Star, Gravity, Pursuit of Happiness, Its OK, Everything, Waiting For The summer, Take Me Away, and I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever.
Click on a video title and you can watch each of the 3 minute masterpieces. As an added bonus two of the videos, Its Ok and Everything, come with the option of Director's commentary. Andy Hutch, friend of the band and director of many of their videos, provides an excellant, insightful and often humorous description of the videos which is worth buying the DVD for alone.
The next two options from the Main Menu are the complete feature length videos previously released by the band in the UK. Since this is a DVD you have the ability to directly access certain scenes - much easier than keeping your thumb on the fastforward button!
The Live Visuals menu is a treasure chest of visual treats. Anyone who attended one of the dates on the 'Fire Tour' will have noticed that several of the songs performed live are accompanied by a backing video projected onto the giant back cloth. Now for the first time, these visual effects are available from the comfort of your living room. This is another bonus well worth buying the DVD for because if you're anything like me you'll always come away frustrated from a gig because you've been torn between watching the visuals on the video screen, and watching the band on the stage. At last you can watch them over and over again.
First up is Fire, consisting of flames and explosions, followed by the flickering oscilloscope of Obsession. Alien is next with it's calming views of skies moving onto more hectic views of skylines and industrial sites. The stunning Investigate with its twinkling stars is simply mesmerising to watch. Finally there is the black and white scenes from New York streets that accompany Rollercoaster. You can also access the Mission Impossible intro video from this menu.
The final DVD Menu is D:Facts which contains Highlights, Discography and band member Biographies. The highlights are a list of the band's major achievements to date, such as chart positions and concerts performed. The discography lists each of the band's album releases with release dates. Finally there is a biography of each band member, taken from the 'Purepop' Delirious? book.
Overall, the DVD is superbly put together, with plenty of nice touches and clever effects making it a highly professional production. If you haven't previously watched the two d: videos, then this is a must purchase for you (and its cheaper than your average DVD too!). If you already own the two d: videos, you will find that the huge improvement in picture quality and of course all the extra footage and features make this DVD well worth buying.