Watch Lost Performance From Van Halen’s First World Tour
Clips from the band’s 25-minute set at the Sellend Arena in Fresno, Calif., from Sept. 22, 1978, had previously appeared, but the entire show had never previously been available.
You can watch the video below.
The road trip, during which Van Halen opened for Black Sabbath, took place after the release of their debut album. “David Lee Roth, Michael Anthony and Eddie and Alex Van Halen – unleashed upon the world at an average age of just 24 – were already rock gods, as this footage proves,” Van Halen News Desk noted. “The amazing video shows what an unstoppable force the band was in the early years. You can see that no rock band was ever as fierce, energetic and as entertaining as these four boys from Pasadena. There’s precious little footage that proves this, making these clips a real treat!”
The recording isn’t quite complete, however – it was shot on an 8mm film camera that used reels that lasted for only around three minutes, meaning that gaps appear while they’re changed.
The success of the album and tour meant that, the following year, the band was able to hit the road as a headline act, securing its future.
“The only thing that sells us is our live show," Eddie Van Halen said in 1980. "Actually, everything we do is the complete reverse of other people. We applied all we ever knew, which was our live show. We never knew much about recording [and] overdubbing.”