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Talking Heads - Stop Making Sense CD (album) cover


Talking Heads


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4.53 | 28 ratings

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4 stars One of rock's great concert films

From the barefoot Byrne's acoustic opening of Psycho Killer to the literally aerobic pace, to the magical onstage transformation into another band, Stop Making Sense is a rock and roll classic. Jonathan Demme's acclaimed film was shot over 3 nights in Los Angeles in late 1983. Byrne wanted the film to be like none other and pulled out all the stops in the look and pace, and no doubt he contributed many ideas to Demme in the direction. With a fantastic set-list, the performance is buoyed by the incredible physical energy the band puts into the show, often jogging in place, running all over the stage, and jamming as if their lives depended on it. This film could very well have you dancing in your living room and has to be one of the greatest college party background films. My personal favorite was the track "Cities" for its adrenalized pace and quirky joy. Late in the show Byrne leaves the stage and allows the band to morph into the ultimate cocaine beach-party known as the Tom Tom Club, the Weymouth-Frantz side project that had a much more bubbly and lighthearted sound than the Heads. They perform "Genius of Love" before changing back into the Heads, and frankly, they should have had more time. While every track is worked into a wonderful performance with great background vocals and instrumental prowess, another favorite to be mentioned is "Once in a Lifetime." Here Byrne goes a bit "out-of-body" and manages to transfer his oddly disconnected aura to the viewer, with the charisma of a powerful old-school preacher. I always felt this was the end of the Talking Heads soul and emotional relevance. Yes, they continued on for a while, but they never had the same spark as they did at the moment of this climactic concert. A great film and a must-see for all rock fans.

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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