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includes “It Serves You Right to Suffer,” “Sweet Sweet Thing,” and his biggest hit, “Boom Boom,” among others. The set clocks in at 45 minutes, and the film is old and not of the quality you may expect. But it is a rare moment in time, and the sound is okay. The vocals are strong. Blues archivist will love this one... Styx, The Grand Illusion and Pieces of Eight Live (Eagle Vision) is one fine rocking DVD. Shot in high-def in Memphis, Tennessee, Styx rock through the entire album “The Grand Illusion,” in order, including stellar performances of the title track, “Come Sail Away,” and “Fooling Yourself (Angry Young Man.” Tommy Shaw and the band sound as good as ever. Set two finds them doing the same treatment with Pieces of Eight, rocking the entire album front to back, including hits “Blue Collar Man” and “Renegade.” The disc is around 130 minutes, and includes a cool bonus feature, “Putting on the Show,” spotlighting the people behind the scenes who make it all happen. A really good show, from a timeless classic rock band...The Beatles- Their Golden Age (MVD) is about as weak as a documentary can be. All of the film clips have been seen dozens of times by even the casual fan, and the Beatles “story” is told yet again. And not very well. Maybe if you had never heard of the Beatles at all - and I cannot begin to even imagine that- you might find this retelling somewhat interesting. The newsreels are kind of fun, but we have seen those many times before. Oh, and there is absolutely no Beatles music in the film. The film is written and narrated by Les Krantz, which brings me to my biggest beef of all. As a narrator, Krantz is stiff and uninteresting. At 60 minutes in length, this “documentary” is about 60 minutes too long...From Straight to Bizarre (DVD) is a really good documentary concerning Frank Zappa’s record labels, with lots of interviews, including Dennis Dunaway and Neal Smith from the Alice Cooper Band, John French of Captain Beefhearts Magic Band, Kim Fowley and many others. There are really cool clips of Zappa and the whole Los Angeles Lunatic fringe, the same clique that included Wildman Fischer and The GTO’s. At 161 minutes in length, From Straight to Bizarre is a captivating story with loads of great clips and rare shots....The

Story of Rock and Roll Comics (MVD) is a real winner for us comic book fans, but is much more. It is the story of one man bucking the sys- tem and doing things his way come hell or high water. It’s all about the life and times of publish- er Todd Loren, perhaps the ultimate comics fan and rock and roll lover, and how he started his own comics company on a show string, and pub- lished biographical tales in comic book form on everyone from KISS to New Kids of the Block. It tells how he fought through numerous law suit threats by everyone from Guns n’ Roses to Bon Jovi and all about his landmark First Amendment court case, and finally up to his sav- age murder in 1992. It’s a very well done docu- mentary about a man that was both loved and hated with equal fervor. Loaded with interviews with such notables as Alice Cooper, Mojo Nixon, and the notorious Cynthia Plaster Caster, there are plenty of clips of interviews with Loren him- self, and a great deal of bonus footage. It’s a very interesting story, whether you have a passion for comics or not...Taylor Swift, American Beauty (MVD) is a film made to look like a doc- umentary, an unauthorized bio on the superstar young country crossover singer. The actress who plays Swift looks so much like her, you will forget it isn’t actually her. It’s kind of interesting, but I have a real hard time seeing someone so young portrayed by an actress. Maybe many years after she is dead, but now, at the height of her fame, it’s a little weird. Still, I remain torn. The story is very inspirational, and well acted. But the fact remains, there is only one true Taylor Swift...Dawn of the Dead: The Grateful Dead & The Rise of The San Francisco Underground (MVD) is a really enjoyable doc- umentary that tells the Dead story very well, uti- lizing all new interviews with folks like Peter Albin of Big Brother, Dead manager Rock Scully, Tom Constanten, Mike Wilhelm of The Charlatans, and comment from writers Anthony Curtis (Rolling Stone), Robert Christgau (Village Voice) and Ritchie Unterberger (Mojo), among others. The film follows the sounds and events that helped to shape The Grateful Dead into one of the most memorable bands of the 1960’s. This is good one. Check it out. •


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