Black 'n Blue - Collected
Majestic Rock Records
Hard Rocking Hair Metal
Disc 1: 10 songs (40:03) Disc 2: 10 songs (36:26) Disc 3: 9 songs (38:19) Disc 4: 10 songs (41:01) Disc 5: 16 songs (74:02)
Release year: 2005
Majestic Rock
Reviewed by Jeff
Archive review

Collected is a box set that includes all four Black 'n Blue's studio releases, (Black 'n Blue, Without Love, Nasty Nasty and In Heat), originally released on Geffen Records and one DVD, which is a live concert recorded during their tour in Japan way back in 1984. Collected is actually limited to 1000 units. This review will focus on the real gem here, which is the DVD. I will also touch upon things like the packaging and the over all value of the box set. If you want to read in depth reviews for Black 'n Blue, Without Love, Nasty Nasty and In Heat, you'll have to do a search in our archive data base. Mike has done an excellent job in detailing that information.

Black 'n Blue's studio releases through Geffen Records have been out of print for years. In recent times have they have been made available again but as expensive imports. Thanks to Majestic Records, all of these albums have been more readily available and in remastered formats. Collected offers the consumer an excellent opportunity to not only own all four albums remastered, but to also own a bonus DVD not available anywhere else, all for under $40.

All of the CD's and DVD come in a small box the length and width of your average CD case, just a bit thicker. The CD's and DVD are packaged in cardboard album sleeves, something I'm not a big fan of but that is one of the reasons why the box set is so inexpensive. All of the CD's and DVD will still be well protected as long as you put them back in the album sleeves and store them back in the box. There is an eight page booklet with sleeve notes from Black 'n Blue fan and expert Dave Reynolds, detailing the history of Black 'n Blue.

As for the DVD, the format is NTSC/Region 0. It is a recording taken from their tour in Tokyo way back in 1984, right around the time they were promoting their debut album and getting ready to work on material for their second album, Without Love. The VHS quality good considering the technology available at the time. It is a little grainy but it doesn't take away from the viewing pleasure. There is one spot during Hold On To 18 where there seems to be a video glitch drop out. The footage seems to be edited pretty well as there alot of different camera angles used, focusing on different band members at different times during the performance. The audio quality is also good, though I wish the guitars were a bit louder in the mix. The DVD clocks in at around 74:02 and contains sixteen songs, five of which never made it to any Black 'n Blue albums through Geffen. Violent Kid and Sign In Blood recently appeared in demo versions on The Demos Remastered: Anthology 1. The songs Lip Lock, Summer Heat and Run Run appear here for the very first time and are excellent tracks that would have fit well on any of the first two Black 'n Blue albums. It's possible these songs never made it on to vinyl because the record company wanted the band to go in a more commercial direction and these songs really rock! There is even an earlier version of what ended up as Rockin' On Heaven's Door called Rock n' Roll Animals. Aside from some different lyrics, the music is pretty much the same. The rest of the album contains live versions of all of the songs from Black 'n Blue. The overall performance of the band is good. They are pretty tight musically. The vocals of Jaime St. James hold up well considering this one full concert, though at times there is a little crack here and there in his voice. The crowd seems to be into it too.

Again, this is a great value for any Black 'n Blue fan who wants to upgrade older tapes or CD's. I also hope that based on the title of Demos Remastered: Anthology 1 that there is an Anthology II out there somewhere that might include studio/demo versions of some of the unreleased material found here like Lip Lock, Summer Heat and Run Run.

Killing Songs :
As far as the songs on the DVD, Violent Kid, Sign In Blood, Lip Lock, Summer Heat and Run Run.
Jeff quoted No Quote
Other albums by Black 'n Blue that we have reviewed:
Black 'n Blue - Rarities reviewed by Jeff and quoted 60 / 100
Black 'n Blue - In Heat reviewed by Mike and quoted 62 / 100
Black 'n Blue - Nasty Nasty reviewed by Mike and quoted 76 / 100
Black 'n Blue - Without Love reviewed by Mike and quoted 83 / 100
Black 'n Blue - Black 'n Blue reviewed by Mike and quoted 90 / 100
To see all 8 reviews click here
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