Monday, June 05, 2006
BEST CONCERT MOVIES EVER?
I watched two of my favourite concert movies back to back last week. Talking Heads' Stop Making Sense and Prince's Sign O' The Times. David Byrne's idea of building the stage and show from scratch before our very eyes is inspired. From just him, a beat box and guitar for the opening Psycho Thriller to the climatic version of Al Green's Take Me To The River, it just makes you gasp. Half way through when the backdrops are in place and the band assembled you think, 'What next?' And then he comes out in that big suit! The lighting is effective too and I thought that Damon Albarn must have studied this for his recent Gorillaz shows in Manchester. The Prince film - and they're both proper films that were screened at the cinema in the 80s - is a more straight up stage show. But what a show! Sign O' The Times remains his finest album and the Revolution my favourite band - Sheila E and Dr Fink are both present - but it's all about Prince, his then muse Cat and some incredible dancing and showboating. Seeing a bloke do the splits and then rise to his feet with ease in a pair of huge heels always makes me draw breath. The only thing that makes me feel glum when I watch this amazing concert is the memory that I had a ticket for the Birmingham show in 1987, row C no less. The tickets demanded the audience wear something peach and/or black and I brought a peach shirt especially for it. Then a few weeks beforehand the whole UK tour got cancelled! Whenever I watch this with someone I always end up muttering, 'Row C' under my breath. I never made use of that shirt either. I hate peach.