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They Might Be Giants, "Venue Songs"

They Might Be Giants wrote and recorded a brand new song for each stop on their 2004 tour and this DVD/CD combo documents the results. After nearly two decades of TMBG records, videos, tours, antics and other work, Venue Songs is exactly what any fan of the band might expect: a collection of often funny and clever tunes and images.
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14576 Hits

Einstürzende Neubauten, "On Tour with Neubauten.org"

neubautenHere is another DVD release which would make any die hard fan excited. Einstürzende Neubauten have always been a group which has had an intimate relationship with their fans and supporters and this documentary is a great snapshot of the experience with the group's  Internet inetractivity and tour following their Perpetuum Mobile release.
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14362 Hits

Pearls Before Swine

coverFinally available to the general public on DVD, this movie is the quintessential film for any hardcore Boyd Rice/Non and Death In June fan. However, it's hardly any wonder this film only did the festival circuit and never went out to a widescale release.
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15691 Hits

Tied & Tickled Trio, "A.R.C."

Of all the bands that Marcus and Mica Acher are in, the Tied & Tickled Trio are probably the ensemble with the comparitively most releases who do the least amount of globetrotting.  The primary purpose of this release is the hour-long live concert for Observing Systems, filmed in April of 2004, but the bonus material of music videos, live TV appearances, and a CD of unreleased material makes for a fantastic package that will please nearly every fan.

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The Mae-Shi "Lock the Skull, Load the Gun"

If reckless enthusiasm and unabashed idealism in DIY ethics were a college course, than the Mae-Shi would be its happy-go-lucky T.A. to Fugazi’s stern, taskmaster professor. In a little over three years, the L.A. quintet have put others to shame with their breathless recording and touring schedule. And while it seems the band is laying low following a second national tour and the release of the Heartbeeps EP this past summer, the band has done their fan base a favor by releasing another chunk of their spazzy, synapse addled spazz-pop, this time in the form of a full DVD.
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Caribou, "Marino"

Dan Snaith's music (previously as Manitoba and now, Caribou) is some of the best bright and sunny pop to roll out of speakers in recent years, and this video collection on DVD accents that fact with mostly silly, cartoonish visualizations of Snaith's blissful tunes.
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11744 Hits

Bauhaus, "Shadow of Light/Archive"

Finally on DVD, this features Bauhaus' two most complete video compilations that were circulating around since the 1980s. I always thought each of these video programs were named what the other should be, as Shadow of Light is a collection of nine promotional music video shorts, some taken from live performances and some with decent sized budgets, while Archive is a 10-song performance film with live shots interspresed with footage of non-band members running around some old English town.
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11901 Hits

Kraftwerk, "Minimum-Maximum"

Minimum-Maximum is a fine overview of Kraftwerk’s career. When I first heard the CD version I was glad to hear again what I had experienced live but only with this DVD do I feel that the Kraftwerk live experience has been reproduced in the quality that it is worthy of.
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12888 Hits

Galaxie 500, "Don't Let Our Youth Go to Waste"

The title is a little strange largely for the fact that it is a Jonathan Richman song which Galaxie 500 covered but did not pen themselves.  I would even be hesitant to say that they popularized the tune, but perhaps the title was just too perfect for Plexifilm to ignore (messy details of authorship be damned).  Nonetheless, it makes me want to collect a bunch of White Lion bootlegs and make a DVD entitled Radar Love, or maybe a bunch of Great White TV appearances and call it Once Bitten, Twice Shy.
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Einstürzende Neubauten, "Liebeslieder"

This video documentary, produced and originally released in 1993, has a ton of great footage and interviews from all members of the band from their inception through 1993's Tabula Rasa
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12625 Hits

They Came Back

This bloodless zombie movie from France winds up saying more about the human condition than anyone might have expected of a film full of the walking dead.  By throwing out genre conventions and focusing on the human story, this quiet character film turns out to be creepier and more anxiety-inducing than almost any film with a proper gut-chewing scene.
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11710 Hits

Einstürzende Neubauten, "1/2 Mensch"

Sohgo Ishii’s movie of Einstürzende Neubauten’s first visit to Japan is a mesmerising piece of work. Ishii mainly filmed Neubauten both at a traditional concert and at a private performance in a disused factory. The industrial setting suits the band perfectly and vice versa.  This movie documents the old lineup in its prime.
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15465 Hits

"Re-Visiting 'Father' and the Source Family"

The storied and obscure LPs recorded by the cult of Ya Ho Wha throughout the 1970s are as legendary as it is possible for any underground musical phenomenon to be. Always spoken about in hushed, clandestine tones among the converted, these LPs have provided numerous objects of obsession for collectors of rare psychedelia over the years, their scarcity making them some of the most difficult and expensive psych records to track down.
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Tino Vision

Although the new DVD from Tino Corp. bills itself as a "State of the art audio visual surround sound experience," the videos that make up the meat of the presentation are often far from bleeding edge.  The collection of video clips, live footage, and a few assorted visual goodies is a fun trip down Tino Memory Lane, and has enough features and curios to keep avid fans of the cult of Jack Dangers and Ben Stokes happy.  But taken with a broader perspective, Tino Vision falls considerably short of the high water marks for music video collection DVDs.
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Aranos, "Live in Galway"

Two things are immediately important about this release. The first is that it is limited to only 99 copies and simultaneously serves as an excellent introduction to the breadth and depth of Petr Vastl's work as Aranos. The second is that, aside from an episode of the Eye, this is the only official video document of Aranos in existence and it's proof of his abilities as both a captivating performer and consumate musician.
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10058 Hits

"SECTION 25: SO FAR"

LTM
Section 25 were always a difficult proposition, because they were really two bands. First, there was the late-1970s incarnation typified by the debut album Always Now, produced by Martin Hannett. At this phase of the band's career, the group wore the Factory uniform through and through, pumping out bleak, claustrophobic noise-rock owing a tremendous debt to Joy Division. This version of Section 25 has not aged well at all, and only record collectors and Factory fetishists actually like the music. The other Section 25 began around 1983-4, after some personnel shifts and a complete 180-degree change in musical strategies. Instead of sour-faced, doomy boredom, the band embraced keyboard programming, synthesizers and the Roland 303, producing excellent, influential early techno that has held up surprisingly well through the years. For those who enjoy charting the connections between the proto-electro of Detroit/Chicago and the more stiff, angular white-boy dance and funk of the early 1980s Manchester scene, Section 25 are ground zero. This DVD contains both incarnations of the band, but leans heavily on the latter phase of their chronology, which is more than fine by me. The DVD begins with a nine-song set captured at London's ICA in the summer of 1980, and it's predictably faceless and largely uninteresting. Then there is a set of clips from various venues dating from 1981 to 1984, and things start to get interesting. A promotional video for "Looking From A Hilltop" is suitably retro and quite a lot of fun, even though the band is just miming to the recorded version of the song. The best material comes from two shows dating from 1985, one at Chicago's Metro Club and another at Prince's First Avenue club in Minneapolis. Section 25 is at the height of their powers here, unleashing addictively futuristic proto-acid techno with dual live drumming, breathy vocals, dramatic keyboard melodies and a galaxy of weird sound effects. Even at this stage, however, Section 25 were still performing more rock-oriented material, though it has now been retrofitted with banks of synthesizers, Human League-style. The video and sound quality varies wildly across the disc, but most of the best performances are watchable and enjoyable. At over two hours, this is a generous package and a must-have for fans of this nascent period of techno.
7940 Hits

"The Wake: Live at the Hacienda 07.1983+01.1984"

Another archival DVD package from LTM, unofficial torchbearers for the marginal artists on the Factory Records roster, this one collects two performances by Glawswegians The Wake.

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9433 Hits

"SECTION 25: SO FAR"

Section 25 were always a difficult proposition, because they were really two bands. First, there was the late-1970s incarnation typified by the debut album Always Now, produced by Martin Hannett. At this phase of the band's career, the group wore the Factory uniform through and through, pumping out bleak, claustrophobic noise-rock owing a tremendous debt to Joy Division.
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8150 Hits

THE LEGENDARY PINK DOTS LIVE AT LA LUNA

Soleilmoon
Soleilmoon's new DVD release of 1998's Live at La Luna VHS adds absolutely nothing to the original release, sharing the same set list and running time, and boasting absolutely zero extras. Most disappointingly, the DVD does not even have chapter stops, making it impossible to cue forward or back at anything more than double speed. Would it have killed Soleilmoon to put some chapter stops between songs?
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13525 Hits

"DOUBLEVISION PRESENT CABARET VOLTAIRE"

Mute
To round out their ongoing series of Cabaret Voltaire reissues, Mute has released Doublevision Present Cabaret Voltaire on DVD. Originally issued through Factory in 1984, this DVD is identical to the original VHS release: the same 14 videos in the exact same sequence. It's a shame they couldn't find something extra to slap onto the digital version, but it's still a welcome reissue for those who have no patience for the deterioration of their VHS collection. Doublevision was a communications company founded by Kirk, Mallinder and Paul Smith in 1982, with the express purpose of releasing music-based video for an affordable price, eventually transforming it into one of the first explicitly audiovisual record labels. This is not surprising for Cab Volt, who were always two steps ahead of their contemporaries, it seems. For these 14 videos, Cabaret Voltaire utilized nascent video editing technology, splicing together television clips, performance videos and archival film footage, gluing it all together with low-tech early video effects. The interesting thing about watching these videos in 2004 is that the primitive video techniques, which probably seemed piss-poor at the time of their release, now play into the current avant-garde video art obsession with early 1980's low budget pirate video aesthetic. 20 years on, this collection of random video cut-ups and ugly, jagged editing techniques seems positively vanguard. The tracks presented are from the finest period Cabaret Voltaire: "Diskono," "Obsession," "Nag Nag Nag," and "Seconds Too Late," among others, are represented. Televised nature and anthropology programs are intercut with images of war, death and destruction from new broadcasts. Clips of Leni Riefenstahl films and videos or surgeries rub shoulders with grainy, decayed video images superimposed over each other in a weird Burroughsian collage of overlapping transmissions, giving rise to a mysterious "third mind" of accidental coincidences and synchronicities. As experimental video, it all works amazingly well. As music videos, the effect is somewhat more muted, as the edits often out of sync with the beat structures of the music. Still, it would be hard to imagine a more appropriate visual accompaniment to Cabaret Voltaire's abrasive, subterranean, low-fidelity electronic music.
10765 Hits