“What The Stooges’ Music Tells You That The Movie Gimme Danger Can't”
As great as the Stooges documentary, Gimme Danger, directed by Jim Jarmusch is — and it is great, what Gimme Danger doesn’t do, because it simply can’t, is translate to the viewer just how damn to-the-end-of-the-line good the Stooges were.
When the band’s one-time manager and zeitgeist-ist Danny Fields says they were the best band, he’s right, of course but the only way to understand why he would say such a thing is to get the records and listen to them. That’s the thing with the Stooges, the music was so strong, so pure, so unto itself, all the remaining members can do is issue impact statements as to the human cost of creating the music and how hard it was at times to survive its incredible power.
It sounds like I am being purposefully hyperbolic, or trying to sell you something. I’m not. The fact is that THE STOOGES, FUN HOUSE and RAW POWER are as good as any records you have ever heard or will ever hear. They are timeless, minimalist masterpieces of feral, unconscious brilliance. There are a lot of great albums out there but none of them sound like The Stooges.
Gimme Danger for both the initiate and those already dosed, is a heavy trip to Stoogeland, full of anecdotes, hyper-rare live footage and photographs but it’s only the story around the actual work. To watch Gimme Danger and not proceed quickly, if not immediately to those records, is missing the point of Gimme Danger.
In all their animal perfection, Stooges albums stand in sleeves on shelves, silent and unconcerned if you play them or not. But you should. Stooges music is beyond good. It is essential listening. I cannot think of any other band I can say that about.
– Henry Rollins
GIMME DANGER: MUSIC FROM THE MOTION PICTURE is now available on vinyl.