Amidst a minor infestation of ladybugs in the yard, I have been listening to some great rock discs. But lets start with a review of a music DVD
Roxy Music: More than This
Prefaced by “The Story of” this is just what is says on the box. It's quite an extensive overview of the phenomena that was Roxy music and those that appeared in her. More importantly unlike many such releases, the members of the band are actually part of the endeavor, even the elusive and eccentric Brian Eno. It might come as a surprise to some reading this column, but Roxy Music was not always the pop tour de force we know from every dance we ever went to in our teens and 20s. The band’s early stage has been highly influential on lots of avant garde bands with its efforts to try new things at all costs.
Roxy, if you will excuse the comparison, had a similar career path to that of Pink Floyd. They began by producing out-there stuff that is at times barely listenable only to morph into a clever pop-rock band with a string of hits. The “stages” of Roxy divide their fans as much as the stages of the mighty Floyd.
There is no denying the affect the band had, in all its guises, on variety of bands represented here by Duran Duran, U2 (Bono again…) and Chic. You see shades of Roxy in Kiss and certainly performers like Marilyn Manson and others of his ilk.
This is a comprehensive DVD with a documentary that is neither too long nor too short, with just enough meat to keep you interested. The trio of songs from their 2006 gig in Docklands are almost unnecessary.
ZZ Top: Double Down Live
This is a couple of live gigs from the band separated by 28 years. The amusing thing of course is that the first gig is from the legendary Rockenplast German concert series. It's filmed in Essen on the tour that followed their classic album Deguello and features the bluesy ZZ Top version at their very peak. Needless to say the band, not necessarily the sound, were tight as they possibly be, not that it’s unusual for them.
The gig DVD has 22 tracks of ZZ Top doing what they do best. There is little to criticize here and long-time fans of the band or new ones who are curious will just love seeing the lads at it. The second DVD titled Almost Now has only eleven tracks on it, with “Got me under Pressure” representing their slick 80s hit making version. Other favourites include a great version of “Tush” and “La Grange.” Several of the tracks appear on the previous DVD, but on this version the sound is much better.