Synopsis by Dan Heaton
Although it lacks any major extras, Music in High Places: Goo Goo Dolls -- Live in Alaska does offer several worthwhile features. "Kotzobue, Alaska ... Stranger Than Fiction" provides 12 minutes of additional behind-the-scenes footage from the small, eternally light town. "Train Story: The Alaskan Railroad" contains comments from a train employee about the charter vehicle and the beautiful surrounding scenery. The text biography combines Goo Goo Dolls history with very praiseworthy text about their latest album, Gutterflower. While mildly informative, this entry virtually ignores their earlier work and original struggles. The only other supplement gives viewers the chance to skip everything but the music. Two bonus tracks--Sympathy and Do You Know--also appear on this list. The first song occurs on the moving train, and the other tune takes place in Kotzobue. This feature utilizes a decent 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer that nicely conveys the attractive Alaskan scenery. While the guys play in front of stunning glaciers, the bright colors provide an impressive atmosphere. There is a little grain at times and the clarity is not always pristine, but the overall effect remains very positive. Live music really smokes when given the proper DVD treatment, and this 5.1-channel Dolby Digital transfer is no exception. The outdoor, acoustic guitar sounds ring from the entire sound field and create an intimate feeling of being personally at the concert. The sound quality is especially high for a release of this type, which leads to a remarkable experience. A 2.0-channel digital track also provides a worthwhile presentation.