Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Social Distortion - Live in Orange County|
Actor: Social Distortion
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
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Let the music do the talking
K.K. | El Lay | 08/07/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)
"If you're an S.D. fan, you might be annoyed at the failure of "Live In OC" to capture the band's full grit and energy. If you're not yet a fan, you'll most likely not have such high expectations, and get around some of the glaring faults of this dvd.
Filmed at the end of a month-long run of nightly shows in L.A. and O.C.,the band does not come across sparking on all 8 cylinders. They seem tired and contrived. I've seen SD countless times over 20+ years so I know their capabilities and I can't help but be a bit disappointed. I can't help but think it would have been wiser to catch them at the beginning instead of the end of the month-long run.
The production itself makes irritating mistakes and comes across somewhat amateurish. The editing is downright maddening at times. The cameraman's choices during the playing are suspect as well. I mean why would you keep the camera on the bass player during one of Ness' best leads of the set? Also instead of the annoying, pseudo-vintage, black and white DV trickery, I would've rather seen a few valid old school clips transferred over from their original film. After all, it would not have been too difficult in this DIY DV age to add a few songs to last year's House Of Blues live performance. From the early '80's Another State of Mind to rarely seen L.A. PBS "New Wave Theatre" clips, not to mention plently of private tapings, older material would have been relatively easy to obtain and gave you that legit vintage feel.
What's not mentioned in other reviews is Ness' somewhat bizarre commentary on the extras. It would have been wiser if he stayed focused more on the band with war stories of tours and the old days rather than, for example, the fact that Ness and his chihuahua are both vegetarians (howl). It would've been cool to share the wealth and get more from current and old band members, club owners, promoters, supporting acts, etc. If you're going to make the effort (after 24 years) to put out a DVD and add extra features, do it right.
This aside, SD fans are very loyal, if not zealots, and I don't see Mike's eccentricities and irritating production stopping them from purchasing "Live in O.C.". (Though I'm sure they're just as critical as I am when it comes to expecting the best possible production and performance) I doubt any new fans will surface out of this project, which is sad. Mike is a senior citizen in punk rock years and I don't see him having the time or opportunity to do another project like this. Too bad, it would have been really cool had it been done right."
A great DVD for fans
Phil | Eastern Mass, USA | 12/05/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Yes, it's true that if you've seen Social Distortion in the years prior to this performance you probably saw a more powerful band. I saw them on the "White Light, White Heat, White Trash" tour and they could have put any youthful band of punk rockers to shame.
But what primarilly makes Social Distortion (or any band for that matter) great is the quality of their song craft and Social D's songs have great lyrics and great hooks. The more "laid back" performance really puts the spotlight on these outstanding and memorable songs.
One thing particularly that made me smile watching this DVD was the audience. Sometimes audience members in a concert film look very awkward or behave obnoxiously because they have a camera pointed at them, but these guys (and girls) are just having the time of their lives! You know they walked out of that show feeling great! Good for them!
Finally, Mike giving props to the late greats Joey Ramone and Joe Strummer is a great moment. Might even choke you up a bit."
A great show almost screwed up by sucky editing
G. B. Barker | Sacramento, CA | 08/07/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I saw that someone else made a similar mention to this, but whoever edited/directed this movie needs to stay away from Social Distortion's works in the future, because if it was ever possible to screw up a Social D production, this guy/gal almost did it.
*For one, the black and white film with the FAKE digitized lines running through the screen to make it look "vintage?" Give me a break.
*Really poor shot selection. Like just as Mike is launching into a solo, the camera shifts to John, the bass player, who, with all due respect, pretty much just stands there and chews gum the whole time. (For the record, John Maurer is a great bass player, so I'm not trying to disrespect him for that.) It's like as the musical focus goes towards one person, the camera moves away from them. It's annoying and distracting.
*I'll also agree with someone else's comment on here about the energy level of the band. Don't get me wrong - this is a great show, but it's one at the end of a long string of homestands at the Anaheim House of Blues, and you can tell that the fact that they've been playing the same house for two or three weeks is taking some of the freshness away from the performance. I saw them in September of 03 and the band seemed much more into it.
To be clear, this is a great DVD, but when I think about how much I love Social D, I can't bear the idea of a less-than-perfect video. There's lots of great behind-the-scenes stuff in the extras, and it further humanizes one of the greatest, and least well-known men in rock and roll, who is Mike Ness. (For example, I had no idea that he owned a chihuahua and was a vegetarian...) If you give a damn about Social D, you have to own this, but at the same time, I hope to God they come out with something better...and soon."
Five stars if...
S. Kurtz | Almost Asbury Park | 08/02/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"...whoever directed this or had final say on the visual content would have said "No no no. It's either black and white, WITHOUT those stupid lines running vertically from side to side, or it's color. It's not BOTH!"
Why do directors get in the way of great live performances and, when they're released on DVD, we either get strobe-like camera shots, that make you seasick after one song, or a switch between color and black and white, that makes no sense?
This is a wonderful performance from a great rock and roll band. But somewhere along the line, the director decided he was gonna be a star too, as so many of them do.
And why do the bands approve of this crap?
DON'T, I repeat, DON'T let this keep you from acquiring this DVD. Mike Ness' performance is worth the cost of the disc alone, and the new song, FOOTSTEPS ON MY CEILING, is incredible!
I wish more bands would take Pearl Jam's lead and just shoot the show from a few angles, and let the camera rest when a great angle is achieved. We don't need a director getting in the way with visuals that weren't offered to the original audience in the first place. Why would they think we want them now?
Sound is sterling, and the performance is great.
A five-star if I ever saw one, but I deduct a star because of the direction. Any more wouldn't do the band justice, and they deserve it."