Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Maybe everything that dies, someday comes back

One of the greatest of rock documentaries is Some Kind of Monster. It paints a rich, if not always flattering portrait of the band, while also showing how the rock lifestyle can prevent the successful from ever growing up. That movie is so good, I would recommend it to people who couldn't care less about Metallica. LoudQUIETloud, a film about the Pixies reunion tour, doesn't reach that height, but it still a must see for the (non-worshipful) fan.

If you are hoping to see the genius that penned the classic Pixies songs you won't find it here. The story in this movie is that the Pixies are mildly quirky but generally normal people who are somewhat taken aback by their reception. Joey and Frank Black are family men earning for the folks back home. Kim is a recovering alcoholic who switches to caffeine and cigarettes. David Lovering's father dies while he is on tour and he turns to Valium and wine. The movie makers try to portray him as getting out of control, but in rock star terms, it isn't much. At one show, he keeps drumming far past the time to stop and he acts a bit manic in scenes. He then pulls it back together. For some this will anger, I found it endearing. These are normal people who create amazing work. If you come to the movie as a worshiper on a pilgrimage, you will probably be disappointed.

Since documentaries have to have an overall story, some stand alone annecdotes have be left aside. Thanks to the wonders of DVD, these are now available. There is awkward scene where the Pixies visit Sigur Ros at their Reykjavik studio and no one seems to know what to do. There is another where Kim is interviewed with Steve Albini. There is a brief, but funny bit where Kim visits a music shop. After handing over her credit card, the clerk lets her know that there is another Kim Deal in a band called the Breeders. Finally, Kim Deal's ex-husband (Mr. John Murphy) shows up and gives the band some archival material he was keeping.

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