Delving into the legacy of US rockers Dinosaur Jr, this dynamic documentary fantastically balances the giddiness of a fan and the heat of a detailed buddy. Such deftness is maybe as a consequence of the truth that director Philipp Virus is the brother-in-law of J Mascis, who, together with Lou Barlow and Murph, made up the band’s authentic lineup. It’s a portrait of a groundbreaking interval in American music that additionally doubles as a poignant rumination on friendship and private development.
Fashioned within the mid-Eighties, the unique trio – two of whom had been high-school pals – had a ragged wildness, straddling heavy steel and punk rock. Reserved and shy offstage, the three members had been uncomfortable with the social facet of the music enterprise. However, regardless of a sluggish begin, Dinosaur Jr progressively moved from the underground to be extra commercially viable, touring with the likes of Sonic Youth and Nirvana. With success, nevertheless, got here artistic compromises and inner conflicts, triggering the departure of Barlow and Murph.
Amid such intense ups and downs, what makes Freakscene so partaking is its determination to place Dinosaur Jr’s music entrance and centre, with quite a few audio and dwell efficiency excerpts. Interviews with the trio, and different artists similar to Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon, are shot in an unpolished fashion that mimics VHS rips of the band’s filmed gigs. Essentially the most shifting actions are captured throughout a reunion live performance celebrating Dinosaur Jr’s thirtieth anniversary; now older and mellower, the lads have put apart their variations. All that issues is the music.