You know one thing that has always ticked me off about Emperor and many other black metal bands? The same thing that ticks most people off: the [intentionally] bad production.
See, that distant and dry black metal production is almost impossible to achieve at a live gig... which is why this DVD is near-perfect. It showcases the amazing musicianship of Emperor in a live setting where their sound is ironically aeons ahead of their recorded sound. What does this mean for fans? YES! You can actually hear the riffs! Brilliant.
The first thing that jumped out at me as soon as 'Curse You All Men' came on and kicked my ass is that Emperor are amazingly tight live (provided none of the stuff was quantized in post-production). I believe I've said this in another review but it really needs to be said again - Trym is amazing. To actually have a visual element to complement his extraordinary drumming feats (which can be likened to extreme cardio-vascular workouts) is really something else. Ihsahn's duosynchrous ability to sing and play guitar is also astounding. I haven't seen many players do lead melodies whilst simultaneously doing vocals over the top, but he seems to have it down pat.
The actual DVD itself showcases alot of their material from early on up until IX Equilibrium (pronounced 9-Equilibrium, not eye-ex-equilibrium). All the material is played with professional accuracy and is of course actually audible now, to our pleasure.
One quirk that really puts me off this DVD at times is when the footage editor went into an epileptic attack and decided to string together random footage, all presented with shots individually amounting to about 20 milliseconds of length. If he was going for the feeling that someone in the front row was undergoing an epileptic seizure whilst dually losing the concept of time, having their audio-visual feeds disconnected and randomly delivered to their brain, then he has indeed succeeded. Not a pleasant experience for the viewer. What he did manage to do is synchronize this footage to the blastbeats, which anyone who is familiar with Trym's drumming style would know is nauseating. Amazing.
'Sides that, this DVD is a truly great product and I wouldn't hesitate to suggest it to everybody. What really boggles my mind however is that the sound quality eclipses that of even Opeth's 'Lamentations' which was engineered by Andy Sneap. S'pose he should stick to doing studio recordings only.