Phil Collins “Seriously Live In Berlin” video reviewed by Alan Hewitt.

Well, it’s showtime once again. Does this man know when to stop? On the strength of the performance captured on this video, obviously not!

This is Phil’s third and to my mind most satisfying live video following on the heels of Live At Perkins Palace (1983) and No Ticket Required (1986) and this is easily the most honest of the three. Gone are the fancy camera angles and injudicious editing which have marred previous efforts. This one lets the show tell its own story.

The video was shot at the Waldebuehne Stadium Berlin on 14th and 15th July 1990 at the height of Phil’s But Seriously world tour and it is easy to see why he is Britain’s most successful solo artist. Twenty four tracks covering the entirety of Phil’s repertoire and clocking in at just under three hours, makes it an excellent buy at £11.99.

The show commences with a panoramic view of the stadium before the carousel lighting rig rises and the band launch into Hand In Hand and from then on we are treated to an audio/visual feast as Phil and the band perform such classics as In The Air Tonight, You Can’t Hurry Love as well as newer songs including the hits: Easy Lover, Another Day In Paradise and Two Hearts.

As ever, Phil is the master showman and has the audience firmly behind him throughout the set. But this is a far cry from a one man show and Phil is ably backed up by the old hands from previous tours; Chester Thompson and Daryl Stuermer along with several newer and equally accomplished ones including the brilliant vocal skills of Bridgette Bryant and the awesome talents of the Phoenix Horns augmented this time by the phenomenal Harry Kim. One feature of all of Phil’s videos is the element of comedy and this one is certainly no exception and the extended band introductions are really funny as Phil sends both himself and the other band members up.

There are also several cameo spots for the band including Chester and Phil’s dynamic drum duets during Colours and In The Air Tonight. The added presence of Bridgette Bryant gives extra poignancy to the rendition of Separate Lives.

All in all, as a statement of the musical and visual excellence that the shows on this tour were, this video is hard to beat and it certainly is a MUST for all “serious” collectors and for those who enjoy good music - happy viewing!