Friday, February 8, 2013

Sound City

In the rockumentary "Sound City," Nirvana drummer and head Foo Fighter Dave Grohl has a lot of fun telling the story of the legendarily seedy Sound City recording studio in Van Nuys, where his bands - and acts as disparate as Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Rick Springfield and Fear - produced seminal albums on a custom-built and proudly analog Neve console.
A number of quite humorous anecdotes are mixed in with the garden-variety nostalgia for old jobs and colleagues. And while there's more than a trace of look-what-I-bought in Grohl's show-and-tell, he and his film are animated primarily by a generosity and sweetness of spirit and a broad and genuine love of music. Still, the last half hour - in which he reunites Sound City alums for a new Neve album - could use some judicious trimming. The best moment in this material comes from a producer who's been assigned to Grohl's collaboration with a certain fellow axeman of note. He looks into the camera and says, "Yeah, right, I'm gonna tell Paul McCartney what to do."

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