Exclusive two disc (DVD/CD) U.S. edition includes a bonus 10 track live album recorded in Austin, Texas (exclusive to this release). “At The Apollo” is the first ever official live DVD release by the Arctic Monkeys. The 76 minute film documents the last gig of their 2007 world tour at the Manchester Apollo. It was directed by Richard Ayoade who has directed music videos for Super Furry Animals, Vampire Weekend and The Last Shadow Puppets but is better known as an actor in The Mighty Boosh and The I.T. Crowd. Disc extras include two bonus tracks, a split screen option for the first half of the film and a multi-angle option with Matt Helders drum track.
First off, this DVD is raw. Raw like your cousin in his first year of film school shot it. But that is also the sort of thing you’d expect from the Arctic Monkeys. As a fan it’s impossible to complain about the music. The songs are all great. After all, we gave the two CDs they’ve released raving reviews. But the sound quality on this CD leaves a lot to be desired. There are some interesting tracks for the completely uninitiated Arctic Monkeys fan: “Da Frame 2R” and “Plastic Tramp.” But those aren’t going to make up for the lack of quality on the DVD.
The CD fares better than the DVD. The sound quality is a bit sloppy in the beginning but gets better–as if the guy woke up at the soundboard a few songs in.
“At The Apollo” is no substitute for missing an Arctic Monkeys show. It might be a cool piece of memorabilia if you got to see them and wanted to remind yourself how cool they were in person, but you’ll never convince friends that the show was great by watching the DVD.