Wednesday, July 4, 2012

"Road Rant - A Week On The Road With Lydia Lunch" DVD (director: Merrill Aldighieri)

Lydia is unquestionably one of subversive rock's first ladies, having led no-wave progenitors Teenage Jesus And The Jerks and working alongside such names as Einsturzende Neubauten, Foetus, Swans, Sonic Youth, and the Birthday Party. She's done extensive work in music, film, and print, and deserves "legendary" status, for sure. This is a documentary of her 2007 French tour to promote her book, "Paradoxia", and it's a curious look at her persona onstage and off.

Swinging back-and-forth between Lydia's spoken cabaret performances and some travel and tour footage with bandmates Joe Budenholzer and Terry Edwards, "Road Rant" is a mixed bag. Lydia's usual confrontational dissection and dissertation on sexual politics is tiring and overdone. Where director Aldighieri succeeds is in showing Lydia "opening up" to more honest opinions and attitudes, outside of her public persona. She undoubtably has tons of stories to tell, and much insight. As it stands, "Road Rant" is an interesting look at Lydia Lunch, definitely worthy for fans but I don't think it's going to convince her detractors that she's much more than an aging punk rocker who's bitter about life. (MVD Visual)

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