• Axl Rosenberg

A LITTLE BIT MORE ON CHIMAIRALast night Vince and I watched the accompanying DVD that comes with Chimaira’s new release, Resurrection. Like the band’s last DVD, The Dehumanizing Process, this is a brutally (often surprisingly) honest, all access look at what goes on behind the scenes with this band- how much hard work they have to do, and often how little it pays off (all these years later, we learn the band is only just now starting to make any money).

There’s a lot that’ll be interesting for fans of Chimaira and people who wonder what it’s like to record an album in general (Vince will write more on that later), but what struck me while watching the DVD is how it really gives you a sense of who these dudes are- not just as a band, but as individuals. These days, you can always tell how obsessed someone is with a band based on how many band members he or she can name; but back in the day, it often seemed like general knowledge of who-did-what was much more common. When I was kid, every CD came with liner notes crediting every musician on the album; the result was that, whether or I was obsessed with a band or not, I usually had a pretty good sense of who was in the band. In this day and age of mp3s, however, I often have to seek out the band members names from their MySpace page. That’s not necessarily such a bad thing, I guess, and the kids who love a band will always go out of their way to find out who played on an album, who did the writing, etc.- but I feel like the lack of a slipcase is just one more shitty thing about the death of the album- it makes it that much harder for band members to build their identities.

This DVD is invaluble. People who believe (as I do) that this band could very well be the future of American metal will be elated to see the band in such high spirits- indeed, it’s kind of amazing how much of the content here is devoted to practical jokes (we watch guitarist Rob Arnold and singer Mark Hunter engage in a very serious conversation about a song they’re struggling with; when they play said tune for bassist Jim LaMarca to get his advice, it turns out to a mock-pop song they’ve written about LaMarca), poking fun (Hunter does a killer impersonation of former drummer Ricky Evensand’s temper well documented temper tantrums from the previous DVD), goofing around (producer Jason Suecof- I won’t spoil it for you, but this dude is AMAZING) or going to surprising lengths for a joke (an extended bit about Norwegian black metal “guest keyboardist” Morgoth the Impaler). After the drama this band has endured, their sudden good mood is a truly heartwarming turn of events.

And I really can’t believe how honest these guys are; they don’t pull any punches when discussing their split with Roadrunner or drummer Kevin Talley and the return of Andols Herrick. There isn’t a party line here, fed to the band by some publicist; just six guys from Cleveland calling it as they see it.

But more than just a document of how this group really does feel resurrected, at the end you really feel like you know these guys- childhood friends living their American Metal Dream. As Vince said when we were done watching, “That made me like those dudes even more.” Even if you have to pay a few extra bucks for the DVD, it’s worth every penny, and then some.


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