Latin music has seemed to explode over the last few years and at the
forefront of that explosion has been Ricky Martin. His albums have gone
platinum worldwide and it seems that most people (read women) care more for
the way he shakes his 'bon-bon' than the musical expression itself. Since
the phenomenal success of 'The Cup of Life' - the official song of the 1998
Worldcup, the Ricky Martin bandwagon has been touring the world to
favourable reviews of his live performance.
On 'One Night Only', we are treated to a 45 minute performance taken from a
1999 TV special that aired in the US that same year. The show took place at
Liberty State Park in New York which gives a wonderful backdrop to the
performance (the beauty of the New York city skyline pre-September 11th
looks amazing on this disc) and we are treated to a total of seven songs -
most taken from his debut English-language album 'Ricky Martin'. A highlight
of the show is the appearance of two Latin music greats - Jose Feliciano and
Carlos Santana - on stage together! Along with Ricky they perform a medley
of 'Light My Fire / Oye Como Va' and this fantastic performance alone makes
the purchase of this disc worthwhile. As for extras there is the music video
for 'Shake Your Bon-Bon' and a photo gallery - nothing too interesting here.
The picture from this DVD is pleasing and is much better than I expected.
Colours are rich and vibrant and the image is sharp and detailed during the
entire show. Slight colour-bleeding can be seen during moments of intense
stage lighting, but this does not distract from the overall viewing
experience. The show is presented in the full screen aspect ratio of 1.33:1
and so is not anormorphic enhanced.
Sound wise, there are two audio tracks to choose from - PCM stereo and Dolby
Digital 5.1. I chose the DD 5.1 mix for this review but from what I sampled
of the PCM stereo track, it was rich and clean and provided a nice sound mix
from the from the front three channels. The DD 5.1 track really rocked my
loungeroom, and I was suprised at how full yet detailed this mix was. The
majority of the mix is kept up front with vocals mixed to the centre and
front left and right speakers, while the surrounds are used aggressively for
audience noise and various instruments really giving you the feeling of
being emersed in this performance. My subwoofer was also given a real
workout especially during the tracks 'Livin La Vida Loca' and 'Maria', so
much so i had to adjust my sub levels down slightly! This is definitely one
of the better live music DVD's that I have heard, and if - like me - you
keep on hoping that each music DVD you buy will match the holy grail of
music DVD's - the Eagles' Hell Freezes Over DTS mix, then you will be
pleasantly suprised by this mix.
If you are a fan of this Latin sensation - then you need to add this disc to
your collection. If you are music-lover in general, then this is a great
display of how a live performance should be captured and mixed on DVD. Love
him or hate him, Ricky Martin's energy and charm is hard to resist - and I
guarantee he'll have you shakin' your bon-bon in no time.