Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

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Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby ToddS » Thu Jan 11, 2018 1:27 pm

I’m all over this blue ray!
Killer lineup! Tommy K is enough right there. Lol

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=g0GPJ_FqJLU

Two years in the making, Ayreon Universe is a full on rock extravaganza, featuring songs from all Ayreon albums, including 2017’s The Source, plus a few fan favorites from Star One.

An amazing array of singers appeared on stage to bring the Ayreon Universe to life: Floor Jansen (Nightwish), Damian Wilson (Headspace), Hansi Kursch (Blind Guardian), Tommy Karevik (Kamelot), Anneke van Giersbergen (The Gentle Storm), Marco Hietala (Nightwish), Jonas Renkse (Katatonia), Mike Mills (Toehider), Marcela Bovio (Stream of Passion), Irene Jansen, Robert Soeterboek (Star One), John Jaycee Cuijpers (Praying Mantis), Edward Reekers (ex-Kayak), Jay van Feggelen, Maggy Luyten (Nightmare) and Lisette van den Berg (Scarlet Stories).


Edit to add this link with more info.

https://www.mascotlabelgroup.com/Watch- ... art-Jan-30
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby EnchantED » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:35 pm

Wowwwww. That looks totally awesome. Pure class. Certainly a must have!!!!

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby GaetanL » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:46 pm

Looks like there will be some stuff from Actual Fantasy with one of the original singers of this album! Count me in for this Blu-ray!
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Mardoch » Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:35 pm

I need this in my life in a serious way.

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:53 pm

I'm speechless -- just speechless.

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby jhallum » Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:01 pm

I can't wait. My shit ass youtube videos from the back of the venue of the four or five songs I got need replacing.

-jeremy

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby ToddS » Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:03 pm

I first checked out the video trailer on my phone, and that was impressive enough. However, I've now played it at home on the main system, and every hair on my body was at full attention. Goosebumps all over!

The good, this looks to be amazing!
The bad, its over 2 months away. :(
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:34 am

I know some of us already have this beast in our hands - but I have not played mine yet. I wanted to hear some thoughts ahead of time to stoke me, but I don't see anyone posting on it yet ......

The Lasers Edge put this bad boy in my hands almost instantly upon release, and I just wanted to stare at the package for a bit before playing it .....it's a bit tough because of time restraints this weekend, but I'm thinking Easter night (Sunday night) I might break this out .....I've already put the wife on notice, and she is an Ayreon fan, so it should happen !!!!!

As I was gazing at the 30 songs or so on this monster, I stopped at #19 and just stood in amazement, when I saw "Computer Eyes" listed......I'm not sure I can wait to get thru the whole DVD as this is my favorite song off Actual Fantasy -- speaking of which, Actual Fantasy is listed, but only at 1:25 so it must the child voice intro segue into Computer Eyes -- why the hell not include AF song as well ????? :o

The total time on this bluray is 246 minutes !!!!!! Are you kidding me ??? When Arjen goes big, he goes big !!!!! This is absolutely going to rule this house ........we have been waiting for this since, what, the year 2002 ? Or earlier ?

What a year so far .......

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby introclaus » Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:47 am

LarryD wrote:I know some of us already have this beast in our hands - but I have not played mine yet. I wanted to hear some thoughts ahead of time to stoke me, but I don't see anyone posting on it yet ......

The Lasers Edge put this bad boy in my hands almost instantly upon release, and I just wanted to stare at the package for a bit before playing it .....it's a bit tough because of time restraints this weekend, but I'm thinking Easter night (Sunday night) I might break this out .....I've already put the wife on notice, and she is an Ayreon fan, so it should happen !!!!!

As I was gazing at the 30 songs or so on this monster, I stopped at #19 and just stood in amazement, when I saw "Computer Eyes" listed......I'm not sure I can wait to get thru the whole DVD as this is my favorite song off Actual Fantasy -- speaking of which, Actual Fantasy is listed, but only at 1:25 so it must the child voice intro segue into Computer Eyes -- why the hell not include AF song as well ????? :o

The total time on this bluray is 246 minutes !!!!!! Are you kidding me ??? When Arjen goes big, he goes big !!!!! This is absolutely going to rule this house ........we have been waiting for this since, what, the year 2002 ? Or earlier ?

What a year so far .......


As you know I’m not a big fan of concert dvds so for now I only grabbed this on iTunes. Sounds phenomenal with great performances from all!

If the dvd/blue ray gets great comments on this forum I might have to get it but for now the audio is plenty enough.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby GaetanL » Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:59 am

LarryD wrote:As I was gazing at the 30 songs or so on this monster, I stopped at #19 and just stood in amazement, when I saw "Computer Eyes" listed......I'm not sure I can wait to get thru the whole DVD as this is my favorite song off Actual Fantasy -- speaking of which, Actual Fantasy is listed, but only at 1:25 so it must the child voice intro segue into Computer Eyes -- why the hell not include AF song as well ????? :o

Everything is fine Larry... the title track "Actual Fantasy" on the studio album is a kind of intro lasting 1:33
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby ToddS » Sat Mar 31, 2018 10:08 am

I watched the bluray last night. Really great freaking show! They spent some money on the live aspect production. I'm not going to go into details, because I think it would spoil things a bit. I totally loved it!

The A/V isn't quite reference imo, but it's good. I listened in stereo which was 24/48 HD (yeah). Will try the surround next go around. I haven't watched the extras yet. The show itself, performances, stage production is quite amazing! More than I expected.

Larry you should love this one.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Sat Mar 31, 2018 2:47 pm

GaetanL wrote:
LarryD wrote:As I was gazing at the 30 songs or so on this monster, I stopped at #19 and just stood in amazement, when I saw "Computer Eyes" listed......I'm not sure I can wait to get thru the whole DVD as this is my favorite song off Actual Fantasy -- speaking of which, Actual Fantasy is listed, but only at 1:25 so it must the child voice intro segue into Computer Eyes -- why the hell not include AF song as well ????? :o

Everything is fine Larry... the title track "Actual Fantasy" on the studio album is a kind of intro lasting 1:33


*** Weird how Abbey of Synn is like the 3rd song and this intro is on the 2nd half of the show ........ tonight is the night !!!!!

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Sir Exar Kun » Sat Mar 31, 2018 5:01 pm

FANTASTIC release for sure. The overall flow of the concert feels a little off for the first 30 minutes or so..... A little choppy, and the song sequences feel unnatural..... But then it all sort of comes together and builds into a monster. "Valley of the Queens" is worth the price alone.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby ToddS » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:09 am

I watched the extras, and sampled a few tracks in DTS HD Master surround. Which, I think sounded even better than the stereo track. The mix is really good.
No doubt about it, this is a must have bluray!
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby prog_powermetal99 » Tue Apr 03, 2018 12:29 pm

All I can say is that this has got to be one of the best concert DVDs I've ever owned in my life, and I own a ton of them. It is truly a magical experience....I had goosebumps the entire time. It starts off a bit slow, but once it gets going, it turns into an absolute beast!! And everyone is so happy and having so much fun, and it shows in the performances..... I don't know how Ayreon pulled this off. I've played this several times through and it gets better every time........I've probably read about 100 reviews of this DVD from Youtube to Amazon, and I have not read one bad thing about this DVD....If someone doesn't like this, it would only be because they just aren't fans of this type of music, but I bet this DVD would be even convert a few non Ayreon fans...........
Such a monster!!!!

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Sparky » Tue Apr 03, 2018 2:21 pm

Brilliant, beginning to end. Astonishingly good, actually. Kinda blows my mind how big Ayreon is at home; in the U.S. they'd probably play to 100 people on their own. I can quibble with the setlist a bit - especially considering that The Theory of Everything has its fair share of detractors (myself included), but the singers are uniformly just SPOT ON. Arjen is talented in any number of ways, but his biggest strength might be coaxing above-and-beyond performances from excellent singers. I could totally sit a lukewarm rock/prog/metal fan (my wife, for instance) and know full well that they will be amazed at the level of performance - world-class vocalists that just happen to orbit in our little music universe.

As for the full package, Arjen just *does not* do things halfway.

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby BC » Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:03 pm

The one single thing that kills me here is the lack of solos. I felt something was off and I sudden realized it was the missing lead breaks when Waking Dreams played. That’s one of my favorite Ayreon songs, and that lead break is ungodly! Arjen explained to me that it his very painful decision to cut the solos so they could get as many songs into the sets as possible. If he does any future Ayreon shows, he will most likely rethink that.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Digital Man » Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:27 pm

My copy arrived yesterday, but haven't watched it yet. I'm not even the biggest Ayreon fan ever but this Blu-Ray seemed like a must buy. I knew it was going to be a high quality production of a very special live event, so had to have it especially for the price. Now I'm really looking forward to watching it.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby prog_powermetal99 » Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:57 pm

Digital Man wrote:My copy arrived yesterday, but haven't watched it yet. I'm not even the biggest Ayreon fan ever but this Blu-Ray seemed like a must buy. I knew it was going to be a high quality production of a very special live event, so had to have it especially for the price. Now I'm really looking forward to watching it.



I'm the same way Guy. The most recent Ayreon CD is the first one I bought in a long time since usually the music is hit or miss with me when it comes to their studio stuff. But the Blue-Ray/DVD is so damn good, that there's not much not to like about it. I just told A friend of mine about it that I work with, who actually was Michael Romeo's room-mate and band mate for a couple of years prior to forming Symphony X. I'm going to lend it to him as I know he'll be blown away by it as well, as he appreciates good musicianship. Arjen always brings out the best in every musician he works with. Not bad considering he's 58 years old.........The man knows how to produce, that's for sure!

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Fri Apr 06, 2018 11:09 am

Sorry to vent here -- but can you believe that I still haven't watched this thing and it's one of the most anticipated events this year for me ??

Reason ? I fractured my friggin ankle, and it's been a nightmare between emergency rooms, phone calls, and inability to get around ...........my viewing room is downstairs and I need a damn tow truck to lower me down the stairs to set it all up ....... I always knew there were levels of frustration, but I never knew I'd hit one of the worst levels...... :cry:

This weekend dammit !!!!!! I'm calling AAA to tow me down there so I can finally watch this thing ......... reading all of your thoughts is stoking the hell out of me......

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Sir Exar Kun » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:12 pm

Sorry to vent here -- but can you believe that I still haven't watched this thing and it's one of the most anticipated events this year for me ??

Reason ? I fractured my friggin ankle, and it's been a nightmare between emergency rooms, phone calls, and inability to get around ...........my viewing room is downstairs and I need a damn tow truck to lower me down the stairs to set it all up ....... I always knew there were levels of frustration, but I never knew I'd hit one of the worst levels...... :cry:

This weekend dammit !!!!!! I'm calling AAA to tow me down there so I can finally watch this thing ......... reading all of your thoughts is stoking the hell out of me......


Apologies for the crude analogy, but it's the musical equivalent of blueballs!
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:34 pm

Apologies for the crude analogy, but it's the musical equivalent of blueballs!


*** Couldn't have said it better myself - and I have had that condition before when I was a kid - NOT GOOD !!!!!! :cry:

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Digital Man » Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:56 pm

I watched this last night and holy shit it's good. As I said I've never been the biggest fan of Ayreon's disks, but this was on a whole different level. One of the best performances I've ever seen. It reminded me of a Broadway musical it was so well done. I mean, everything about it was nearly perfect. Very glad I picked it up.
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby jhallum » Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:48 am

Like Live Scenes from New York, and Operation: Livecrime, it does a superlative job of capturing what it was like to be there. I've played this three or four times, and it's just so good to watch.

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby prog_powermetal99 » Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:16 pm

LarryD wrote:
Apologies for the crude analogy, but it's the musical equivalent of blueballs!


*** Couldn't have said it better myself - and I have had that condition before when I was a kid - NOT GOOD !!!!!! :cry:



Sorry about your ankle Larry :(. I'm sure you are going to love this when you finally get a chance to watch it...... Looking forward to your review!

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:14 pm

Sorry about your ankle Larry :(. I'm sure you are going to love this when you finally get a chance to watch it...... Looking forward to your review!


***Thanks bro ....this ankle thing has really put a damper on my enthusiasm for these things - but I am under orders from my wife not to watch this show without her.....I can watch it anytime, as I'm sitting on a couch not able to walk ...... but I did tell her, if she doesn't make it this upcoming weekend, I'm going it alone ...... so we are scheduled for this upcoming weekend, and I will watch it without her if need be .....cannot let this go one more week...........

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby prog_powermetal99 » Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:58 pm

I keep going back to Damian's performance on "The Druids Turn to Stone". Holy Crap he's good on that song.....Probably my favorite vocal performance of the concert. So much passion and emotion.

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby EnchantED » Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:04 pm

prog_powermetal99 wrote:I keep going back to Damian's performance on "The Druids Turn to Stone". Holy Crap he's good on that song.....Probably my favorite vocal performance of the concert. So much passion and emotion.



Totally agree. I watched the concert once, but that song I’ve seen About 25 times. It’s maybe the best live performance Ever 8)

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Sir Exar Kun » Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:28 pm

Totally agree. I watched the concert once, but that song I’ve seen About 25 times. It’s maybe the best live performance Ever 8)


Now THAT is a bold statement! Granted, I'm not prepared to argue against this, but still......

Gods know all of these performers are consummate professionals, and absolutely OWN that stage..... But Damian really does take it to a different level, even amongst that elite group. When he hits the stage he feels like the centerpiece of the entire show.

Really wish Threshold would have put out a live DVD with him on it.....
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby Sparky » Wed Apr 18, 2018 3:14 pm

Just amazing performances throughout this thing. CRAZY good. I told my wife that this show is testament to how many really excellent vocalists there are out there - I mean, this show is limited to singers in a small niche of music, all from Europe, and they KILL.

One thing: I like how Arjen says he hates playing live and then of course comes on at the end and is nothing else but a bigtime showman. You may hate it, buddy, but it sure doesn't look or sound like it. Same thing with the speech - your words betray your claims, sir.

Still over here trying to figure out how to get Anneke to marry me...

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Wed Apr 18, 2018 5:55 pm

Still over here trying to figure out how to get Anneke to marry me..


*** Dude -- ain't gonna happen -- I've been trying to figure this out since seeing her at PP, and so far, no luck .............

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Mon Apr 23, 2018 8:52 am

I finally got to watch this last night in it's entirety !!!!! Someone had posted previously that the set list felt choppy and uneven - and I went back to see who said that and it was Sir Exar Kun. I felt the same way - The first 20-30 minutes or so felt just sort of -- there. It felt choppy, uneven, and almost forced......then all of a sudden the magic kicked in and the stars were shining. What a fantastic show - and we could all argue the set list, but I felt that the songs they played were excellent choices from the discs they came from ..... great singers, great visuals, great everything ........

I was stunned at how good these performers were - in particular, Marcel Coenen (guitars) and Joost van den Brook (keyboards). I know both are amazing players and have watched and listened to them both through the years ..... but tonight, for some reason, either experience or greatness or both just kicked into high gear on this night and I was just locked in on their performances throughout the whole show ...... I dare say, during a couple of moments, as I watched Marcel playing, I had thoughts of Michael Romeo in my head and just how good Marcel really is ......

My favorite singers of the show were - Damian Wilson. The man just fired all of his cylinders and the class was pouring out of him...... he was hitting the high notes with ease, and he looked very comfortable and confident. Even the wife said she loved his voice and asked (again) who Damian Wilson was ...... the 2nd guy who stole my show was John Jaycee Cuijpers...... I was wondering why they didn't get Russ Allen back to do his parts, but when this guy sang, he just blew me away......I had not heard of him, and when looking him up was surprised to see he sings for Praying Mantis. This guy just blew me away with his grit, class, and energy........fantastic.

My only bitches are to the audio and video dept -- therefore, Todd is the only one who needs to read this part. :wink:
So, the show starts - and I'm seeing that is was filmed on video. In other words, it looks "live" instead of filmed. I was so excited for this - and when the music started, I saw a glitch in the show, and the video suddenly turned into film and stayed that way for the remainder. I couldn't play with the settings as I had people in the room with me, but I'm guessing that either my bluray player or projector, couldn't handle the processing right....I might have the bluray player defaulted to 24fps to make everything look like film - maybe I should shut that off ? Or my aging projector can't handle the frame rate of current video standards ? It really pissed me off to see this happen, unless it was a mistake on the video recording people and they changed it on the fly ? Which I heavily doubt .... more to come on this.

You are right on the audio - it is not reference quality because the PCM audio puts the music perfect in the mix, but it puts the vocals back a bit .....I wanted to check it out in stereo, but again, I had people watching and didn't want to interrupt the flow ......the surround mix was pretty awesome though. My wife kept saying she can't hear the singers, and she was right ......too far back in the mix.

Other than that - this was a fantastic show, and it's good to finally get to see this on stage after all of these years........incredible 2.5 hr show ..........

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby GaetanL » Mon Apr 23, 2018 11:12 am

Just saw something really disappointing to me by reading the back cover of the Blu-ray...

Actual Fantasy album:
Abbey Of Synn [9:34]
Computer Eyes [7:31]

The Best Of Live concert:
Abbey Of Synn [4:17]
Computer Eyes [4:34]

:cry:
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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby LarryD » Mon Apr 23, 2018 11:36 am

GaetanL wrote:Just saw something really disappointing to me by reading the back cover of the Blu-ray...

Actual Fantasy album:
Abbey Of Synn [9:34]
Computer Eyes [7:31]

The Best Of Live concert:
Abbey Of Synn [4:17]
Computer Eyes [4:34]

:cry:


*** I didn't put that part in my "bitches" part of my post above ..... but I was so disappointed when they cut off "Computer Eyes" --- I was waiting for the synth / guitar duo to kick in and they ended the song ........ I'd been waiting for that song throughout the show and when it appeared, I was ecstatic........ when it ended I just sat and thought wtf just happened ? I noticed it on Abbey as well -- the two songs that were at the top of my list, and they cut them off ........ :cry:

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Re: Ayreon Universe - The Best Of Live

Postby ToddS » Mon Apr 23, 2018 5:09 pm

Larry - they used something like 30 cameras and I’m thinking some were shot on video instead of film.

Cutting some songs short is a bummer, but I get the reason being to cram in as many songs as possible.

Marcel is a monster player. He is as good as anyone really. Romeo, Petrucci, etc. he can basically play anything. It is an absolute joy to see him involved. I wish he would do more music Of course the whole band is great!

Larry I think you will like the surroud track more.
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