REVIEW: The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years [1988]

“It doesn’t matter—the size of your pencil. It’s how you write your name.” Director Penelope Spheeris changes the aesthetic and to some extent the goals of her documentary series The Decline of Western Civilization with Part II: The Metal Years. Like its predecessor depicting the contemporary 1980 Los Angeles punk scene, we get a glimpse […]

REVIEW: A Band Called Death [2013]

“Back up your brother” It took thirty-five years before proto-punk outfit Death’s guitarist, spiritualist, and uncompromising leader’s prophetic words came true, but the world finally came knocking. David Hackney didn’t have much time left on this earth when he brought the original United Sound Studios masters from Detroit to his brother and bandmate Bobby in […]

REVIEW: Dark Shadows [2012]

“You’ll have to imagine us on a better day” At present, the Tim Burton discussion can be answered in two ways. One: I’ve become too old and jaded to ‘get’ the farcical nature of the auteur’s darkly comic worlds anymore. The satiric tongue-in-cheek tonality he so brilliantly cultivated in grotesque-lite universes either doesn’t have the […]