A live DVD that will have you bouncing along
Bouncing Souls are a feel good band, no questions, no doubts, so it comes as no surprise to see that this live DVD is rather entertaining. They're also a band with a lot of history - 15 years worth, to be precise - and the Glasshouse gig is clearly an emotional show for band and crowd alike. And they love their fans - a lot of love and effort went into the extras, including a running commentary of the gig from most of the band. Even if you're not a fan, you should make this DVD an essential purchase.
From the first chord of 'Apartment 5F', it's hard not to laugh and sing along. Kung Fu have done a really good job of capturing the spirit and emotion - even the occasional awkwardness of singer Greg Attonito between songs. Soon enough the crowd are singing along loud enough to drown Attonito out on 'That Song', but the band love it as he launches himself into the pit. The more the film rolls on, the clearer it becomes that Bouncing Souls love their fans even if they don't quite know what to say for between song banter.
Not they have a problem with banter before dedicating 'Kids and Heroes' to the audience. Attonito and Kienlen joke with the crowd about the show being filmed, 'so don't fuck up - actually it's only Kung Fu so you can fuck up' as the two of them play to the crowd. As it is, 'Kids and Heroes' is pretty damn good and you'll be tapping your feet and nodding your head in no time.
By the time Argyle rolls around, even I'm starting to get emotional - everybody's obviously having a good time. The chat beforehand makes for interesting viewing as Attonito seems a little self conscious talking about the song: 'I scribbled this down when I was 17 or 18, and I felt that nobody understood me and I felt all bad for myself like teenagers do', laughing as if he can't quite believe that he did. Songs like 'Argyle' and 'No Rules' show how good the Souls are live; they play at breathtaking speed and sound better than on record.
There is so much good stuff on this DVD, there more you watch it, the better it gets. The real highlights of the show come at the end on 'True Believers' and 'Manthem', with Atonitto and Kienlin encouraging a mass stage invasion. It takes a little while, but once one person gets on stage, people flood on making things chaotic but cool. Band and fans sing together, and there's only one thing for it: sing along too.
However, as good as the actual gig is, the extras make the whole thing totally worth buying. The commentary is so funny once the band, minus drummer Michael McDermott, get into their stride (it's a bit awkward and strained at first). The Souls just have a laugh, joking that they've fooled everybody into thinking they're a proper band and talking about the filming and venue amongst other things. It offers more insight than a lot of interviews do.
The extra footage is another cool feature, and like the commentary, lets you into the band's world a bit more. So, we get to see Kienlin persuade the others to practise just to 'have some pride', a BBQ pizza party, and a show build up from the band's perspective. These are the sort of guys you'd want as your mates.
The gig itself is so great, I would've been happy just with that, but combined with the all the extras (which include English and Japanese subtitles, and a trailer for a documentary Bouncing Souls DVD) it's one that I'll watch time and time again.