Pop - Lust For Life Distributed
exclusively by MVD
Review by Carl Macki
This amazing DVD, which covers several major episodes in Iggy Pop's life, is mainly centered at a time in his career
where he was really trying to put the POP first, or pop the New Wave bubble.
Zeit 1, the Dutch production company, took footage from 1986 in the Netherlands, when Iggy was
enjoying immense popularity
at the time of the heavily Bowie-influenced, "Blah Blah Blah," with the hit single,
Child (Wild One),"
a cover of a rockabilly tune by Australian rocker Johnny O'Keefe. Also included in the story
for illustrative purposes are very rare footage of the Stooges in late 60s, a brief taste of the Sex Pistols
in concert; plus some astounding scenes of Jimi
Hendrix playing guitar.
Remember the Stooges were origianlly the Psychedelic Stooges -- at one point they listened to Hendrix
nearly night and day , with Pop tripping on LSD everyday for one month straight,
The Stones influence is present but invisible. The Rolling Stones is what drove them to the blues, the mother of modern rock.
Iggy was born Jim Osterberg, on APril 21, 1947 in Muskegon, Michigan,
and in the documentary, he expounds on his musical starts,
how impressed he was with the sound of the machines as a young boy on a
visit to the Ford assemply plant at River Rouge, Michigan.
In a keen facet of his musical imagination, he is a bold innovator and
off-beat experimentalist and bears a greater likeness to avant garde
classisists like John Cage, Henry Cowell, Terry RIley, Harry Partsch
and Karlheinz Stockhausen than to rhythmn and blues artists..
One of the first
bands, the Iguanas, started when then-Jim Osterberg was fourteen, lasted for four years
until Iggy went to college at the University of Michigan at age eighteen His next band was the blues-based The Prime Movers,
but they lasted only several months as Iggy decided to go to Chicago to "investigate the blues."
He wanted to play like an
older, honeydrippin' bluesman. After that intense learning experience in Chi-town, visiting the blues clubs
and playing drums with authentic bluesmen, he decided, "What he have to
do now is to apply it. I'm going to go home, find three
or four guys who are not impressed with the music scene, who don't want to do British Invasion songs, who don't wanna
do covers, and blow the roof off my town."
There is also a funny description of how
he met Danny Fields, the man who would be responsible for
signing the Stooges to
Elektra Records. Flields was at one of their gigs in Ann Arbor -- in a black leather
jacket and shades -- the set was over, he approached them saying, he wanted to make them stars.
THe band thought here we go again But it was true. For an extremely interesting perspective on the Stooges
and Danny Fields, I highly recommend Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain.
"Lust for Life" does not in any way claim to be definitive.
For example, the documentary doesn't show him meeting David
Bowie in 1971 at Max's Kansas CIty,
or the "Berlin and Bowie"
1976-78. Nor does it contain any interview or footage of Velvet Underground's John Cale,
who was very influential in the career of The Stooges, producing their first album.
The parts that are shown. however, are extremely interesting
The late Ron Asheton, Stooges guitarist, is also interviewed
at lesser length. Asheton gleefully described the altered state the
induced with the sound turned up way high on the Marshall amps
in the ballroom of the Student Lounge at the University of Michigan in 1969,
and how the palpable vibrations would resonate from the speakers for
about five minutes afterwards. Asheton appears to be holding
back bitterness against Iggy, as Ron describes how he believed the drug use in the band
smashed hopes he had for
the band to become known as "the American Stones."
Iggy Pop, in the interspersed interviews with him, including a hilarious one on Canadian TV, is wry and
as he declaims views on music, his
roots in British invasion and psychedelia,
the fame of David Bowie, and more.
He is shown in concert, performing some of his better known hits, such as "Some WIerd Sin,"
"Lust for Life," I'm Bored," "No Fun," "I Wanna Be Your Dog," "China GIrl," and some others.
"Lust for Life" has some great
interviews with stunning and unprecedented archival
some portions are only in Dutch, so I failed to understand the commentary.
You can't bring back the EIghties when Iggy was in the top of his form
in popularity, but this DVD portrays
an image of him back then that is undeniably impressive. This is a treasure that you will want to enjoy over and over.