DVD review

Roadrage 2003
Roadrunner Records

Roadrage 2003Roadrage 2003 can be looked at two ways: A bare-faced marketing gimmick for October's upcoming Roadrage tour (which, let's face it, is difficult to deny) or 'bloody hell, 22 metal videos for under a tenner . . . bargain!' We'll go with the latter as we're feeling uncharacteristically charitable today, and of course because the alternative viewpoint would result in a very short review . . .

If much effort's gone into selecting these videos - beyond making sure that there's a couple from each band on the tour - then I'd be surprised. Roadrage 2003 covers everything from Sepultura's Roots Bloody Roots from 1996, to the latest cuts from Chimaira, Spineshank and Type O Negative, with sound levels bouncing up and down dependent upon age. Those last two are actually a couple of the best vids here, and really show how much Roadrunner's promos have moved on over the last year or so.
    A lot of the older cuts are high saturation, choppily edited performance pieces that were obviously shot on tiny budgets. Watched in isolation they're passable, but strung together - as they are here - they're entirely interchangeable. However, even here there's brass in the form of Weeds from Life Of Agony - a unique band who put out a trio of fabulous albums on Roadrunner and never got the success they deserved.
    Other highlights include the Runaway meets Hardware cyberpunk stylings of Fear Factory's stunning Resurrection, Spineshank vs. Posh Spice (possibly) in the blistering Synthetic and the glam-horror shtick of Murderdolls and The Misfits in White Wedding and Scream.

If you're already in possession of the regular audio versions of a lot of these tracks, then these videos are little more than a curiosity, even at this knock-down price. However, if you're in the process of discovering the metal genre, or are looking to educate yourself about the acts on the Roadrage tour then this is an ideal introduction to the world's premier modern metal label.

:: Rowan Shaeffer

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