DIMMU BORGIR - World Misanthropy
August 20, 2002, 17 years ago
The most ambitious DVD metal package I've run across, to date. Three discs, all told, about 2 1/2 hours of onstage material, dating back to '95, as well as still photos, interviews, backstage footage and computer downloads, all housed in an elaborate box, which unfolds into the shape of an inverted cross. Rather than merely transfer a concert to tape, Dimmu Borgir broke the package into smaller viewable segments, with opportunities to jump around, not having to play through an entire disc to hear/see one's favorite bit. The two DVD discs are comprised of live music, then there's an additional CD, featuring four tunes from last year's Wacken performance and heretofore Japanese-only bonus cuts 'Masses For The New Messiah' and 'Devil's Path 2000'. While the viewer is presented with different options for playing the DVDs, 'Puritania' is the only audio track reprised from the recent Alive In Torment shaped mini-CD; the others from that Stuttgart performance appear in visual form, on disc #1. Therein lies the only problem with World Misanthropy, the redundant usage for much of the material. Disc one contains eight songs, lifted from two concerts in 2001. One can view each four song set straight through, without interruption, or can alternate between the live performances, interspersed with interviews of each member and behind-the-scenes camcorder footage (an endless array of bootleg quality snippets, drunken/passed out antics and toilet humour). The visual quality of both concerts is quite good, the Wacken show even zooming in from overhead, as well as offering everyone a chance to see how many people stick around between 2 and 3 AM. Amazing! Various band members from Destruction, Nevermore, Impaled Nazarene, Kreator, The Crown and Judas Priest have cameos throughout. On tour or at home, the background music is an unexpected string of '80s metal: Saxon, Twisted Sister, Motley Crue, AC/DC, Judas Priest and WASP. The second DVD is more historical in nature. It begins with several songs from an oft-bootlegged Polish TV studio shoot. It's the same set-up employed on home videos by My Dying Bride and Sins Of Thy Beloved. Seems any band visiting Poland plays that venue. Some live camcorder material from '99 festivals is included, although North American footage is suspiciously absent. The exception is Mexico. One look at a Mexico City crowd and there's little doubt why bands go out of their way to play there. Holy Hell! There are also four "video" clips, although 'Alt Lys Svunnet Hen', dating back to '95, is little more than a homemade b&w; handheld instrumental. The fire-breathing, blood-spitting 'Spellbound' is performed under a Cradle Of Filth backdrop and marries different eras together, including the days with Kim Goss (now fronting Sinergy) on keyboards. The letterboxed 'Arcane Lifeforce Mysteria' is a live, promotional quality piece, as is 'Puritania', but the latter repeats the exact Wacken footage, for a third time. There are four different photo galleries, posed and candid. Unfortunately, they go by in silence, without musical accompaniment. Misanthropy? Hardly. A tidy, easily navigable, fan-friendly venture.