‘From The Front Row…’ The DVD-A Rip-Off

15 Apr

I guess many here will not know of the series of ‘in concert’ DVD-A/V’s that were put out by Silverline that promised “Stunning 5.1 Surround Sound”. They even had a THX logo.

But what you got was a substandard attempt at a 5.1 up-mix that added nothing to the listening experience. I’m playing one of them at the moment, basically just to remind myself how underwhelming they were, while working on next weeks classical release and was wondering if any of you were duped as i was.



18 Responses to “‘From The Front Row…’ The DVD-A Rip-Off”

  1. twosheds January 10, 2017 at 09:37 #

    Glad I remembered this warning.
    I was just looking at the ELP disc on eBay/discogs
    Won’t be bothering now

  2. philbiker June 24, 2015 at 04:56 #

    I have a Silverline Gary Numan DVD-A and it’s pretty terrible.

  3. Owen Smith April 20, 2015 at 11:42 #

    I never bought any of these, I don’t have many commercial DVD-As. Most of what I wanted in surround at the time simply never came out.

  4. sailorpaul April 18, 2015 at 15:22 #

    The mix and sound quality of Silverline releases seem to run all over the map, from the truly terrible to quite excellent. Two excellent releases that no one has mentioned yet are Blues Traveler: Truth Be Told and The Fixx: 1011 Woodland. Both releases are worth searching out. The Fixx disk in particular will better 90% of all modern surround commercial releases available in both fidelity and mix. As my Dad always said… even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while.

  5. fathomie April 16, 2015 at 23:55 #

    Got two of the better ones, Ace of Spades and the BOC ‘A long days night’. Then I have two of the duds, Motorhead – Overkill. and Uriah Heep – from the front row. The stereo is ok on the later, the surround is, well,,,,

  6. g335 April 16, 2015 at 05:49 #

    Yes, I got duped too on three of these “From The Front Row” DVD-A titles. I believe somewhere in a box I have the ELP, the Dixie Dregs & the Rick Wakeman titles. They all sound muddy and distant. I certainly know what you mean OD. It seems Silverline was hit and miss on certain titles.

  7. birdycat19 April 15, 2015 at 15:47 #

    According to a 2003 post in the Hoffman forums, these Silverline titles actually contained an actual, discrete surround mix:

    Aaron Neville – Believe
    Aaron Neville – Devotion
    Awaken – Awaken
    Big Phat Band – Swingin’ For The Fences
    Big Phat Band – XXL
    Blue Oyster Cult – A Long Day’s Night
    Bruce Dickinson – Balls To Picasso
    David Becker Tribune – Germerica
    David Diggs – E-Klek-Trik
    Dishwalla – Opaline
    Glen Phillips – Abulum
    Geoff Tate – Geoff Tate
    Ministry – Animositisomina
    Motorhead – Ace of Spades
    Motorhead – Best of
    Shankar & Gingger – Shankar & Gingger
    Van Zant – Brother To Brother
    Van Zant – II
    Venice Underground – Venice Underground
    Widespread Panic – Ball
    Ziroq – Ziroq

    To my knowledge no Silverline disc contained a stereo mix. I bought the Jonathan Richman hits disc and…oofah. Skeet practice material.

    • lizardking430 April 16, 2015 at 03:07 #

      FYI – The Ziroq DVD-A disc has hi-rez stereo (and its a good discrete mix)

    • sacdtodvda May 25, 2015 at 06:42 #

      Another one to add: Forget Yourself by The Church, mixed by the band’s drummer.

      One of a very few Aussie surround releases.

  8. JT April 15, 2015 at 14:17 #

    I only have 2 Silverline releases and they both happen to be 2 of my favorite albums ever.

    Motorhead – Ace Of Spades
    This one sounds really good to me.

    Corrosion Of Conformity – America’s Volume Dealer
    This is just ok. I think I remember being a bit disappointed with it. Haven’t listened to it in a long time. I will have to revisit it.

  9. admsh April 15, 2015 at 13:31 #

    I only have the David Crosby show, and while separation is not mind blowing the sound quality is quite satisfying. The track list is mostly from his second solo album and later CSNY output and musicianship is wonderful, I love this set. Not a “stunning” surround experience by any measure, but an enjoyable disc nonetheless.

  10. sacdtodvda April 15, 2015 at 12:09 #

    Being late to the show I read enough about these on a forum that shall not be named to know that these were generally not very good.

    It seems many are sourced from KBFH radio shows, so it’s a pity the masters of the quad shows didn’t survive – or that the original multi-tracks couldn’t be used to create real surround.

    Certainly a potential opportunity missed.

    • sacdtodvda April 15, 2015 at 12:38 #

      And to be fair they weren’t too far off the mark describing it as “stunning 5.1 surround”.

      It seems many people were stunned when they heard what was on the discs.

  11. oxforddickie April 15, 2015 at 11:43 #

    I forget, to my knowledge they did release a real surround mix, The Gary ‘U.S.’ Bonds disc.

  12. nooders2006 April 15, 2015 at 11:41 #

    Agreed – There is a Rick Wakeman one From The Front Row and most people said it was more like From The Parking Lot. Silverline releases were at the cheaper end but some are quite good – I’m quite partial to the De Abravamel Mahler CD/DVD-A dualdiscs especially No 1 Titan. The Tchaivkovsky Swan Lake Silverline 2 Disc Dualdisc good too. I have quite a few Silverline releases (none From The Front Row) and are mostlly good

    • oxforddickie April 15, 2015 at 11:56 #

      That Wakeman disc is the worst i’ve heard, i can’ listen to it.

      Don’t have any of the classical releases, didn’t realize they ventured into the classical line.

      • nooders2006 April 15, 2015 at 13:01 #

        I’ve got 10 of the Silverline classical dualdiscs – 4 Mahler, 2 Tchaikovsy, 2 Brahms . 1 Vauhan William a Sibelius one . Got them mostly through http://www.secondspin.com some were only US$2.50 plus US$3.99 postage

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