Self-editing is overrated. Or is it?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Tell Me Do You Miss Me

Watched this really interesting movie tonight on the plane back to LA. I dunno what it is lately, but I seem to keep watching these documentaries about why rock bands break up. There's been a real slew of them lately! From the movie about Refused to the new DVD about the end of the Minutemen (review coming soon), there just seems to be a lot of reflection on what happened to all the great bands.

Anyway, so now there is this movie about the end of Luna, and interestingly enough, it's directed by a guy that I went to school with named Matthew Buzzell. I haven't seen him literally since college, but he was an extremely nice guy, and in my last conversation with him way back when, he told me that he was gonna be roommates with this guy named Sean Eden, who had just gotten a job as the lead guitarist of Luna. That was a long time ago, people.

So the movie was pretty interesting and kinda sad. See, here's the thing. I played in a rock band for a long time with my best friends in the world. It was a great situation. Eventually, the band broke up. Why? Well, for one thing, we all were ready to move on to other things. Each of us had a different direction that was pulling us away, and it wasn't a bad thing, it's just what was meant to be. We're all still great friends to this day, which, quite honestly, if you're in a band with someone for 12 years and at the end of all that, you're still great friends? That's the greatest accomplishment any band can boast of, in my opinion. Why is that?

Well, that brings us to the second reason why my band (and Luna) broke up. It's really hard fucking work being in a band. It sounds like it's gonna be all orgy-under-the-stage-while-one-handed-drummer-does-his-20-minute-solo, but it is SO not like that. It's work. It's travel. It's logistics and disappointments and dashed expectations for a large portion of the time. And, most importantly,a good percentage of it is really dull. Which is kinda what this movie shows.

The scene where the airline loses all the bands' merchandise that the proceeds of were gonna fund the whole tour? Totally happened to us. The awesome new club that isn't so awesome? Been there. Twice. It's not glamourous. It's not unglamourous. It's just another day of struggling up the mountain. I thought Matthew did a terrific job with the film in sort of encapsulating what their lives are like on tour.

Now, was Luna the best band ever? No. They're fine. They're kinda quiet and interesting and different. I never found myself thinking "Wow, this band is the future." They were pretty good. But the movie does two great things: the first is that it's gives you the chance to appreciate pretty good in its proper context, and the second is that you get to understand why pretty good isn't enough anymore.

In the end, it's just time to move on.


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