Through Time P.O.V. (DVD)
posted on 10/2008 By:
Ah, the video collection. Right up there with the remix album and the soundtrack in the “what in the hell am I gonna say about this?” department for reviewers. The goal is not to review the songs, which in this case are largely classic and beyond reproach. Likewise, the quality of the videos themselves aren’t really the most relevant issue here. You know the songs, you probably know most of the videos. Instead, the bottom line is whether or not this product is worth adding to your Anthrax collection. And on that count: meh, it’s okay.
Through Time P.O.V. (Persistence of Videos, in case you were wondering) is a reissue of a 1990 hour-long VHS collection. As the name suggests, this is from the Persistence of Time era, which means that the material here covers the entire Belladonna reign. Highlights are live footage clips of the early classic “Metal Thrashing Mad,” and the evergreen setlist staple, “I Am the Law.” The low point is the mixed source video for “I’m the Man,” a song only marginally enjoyable at the time and now very firmly from the “it seemed like a good idea at the time” files (along with the jam shorts).
Most notable here is the out of character video for “Who Cares Wins,” which Scott Ian quite rightly recognizes as the band’s best. Its sobering look at the issue of homelessness is a stark contrast with the band’s typical modus operandi. But the other end of the spectrum works quite well too, and it’s hard to restrain the sheepish grin and bobbing your head along with the ridiculously goofy “Madhouse” video from Spreading the Disease.
When it comes to a video retrospective, you pretty much know what you’re gonna get from a simple look at the dvd’s back cover. The only X-factor is whether the band interviews or other behind the scenes features add anything. In this case, the biggest letdown is that the band’s introductions--the only extra content here--are largely worthless. Basically, you get the kind of on the spot comments bands usually give when asked to introduce their latest video. Charlie Benante, in particular, seems like he’s only halfway paying attention. There are exceptions, but in general this is content you only care to see once.
It also seems possible that the video collection is an outdated product in the internet age. While I’ve not checked, it seems likely a spin around Youtube would lead you to most or all of these videos any time the urge to see these clips strikes you. So basically, I guess I’ve used too many words to say that this collection is aimed at the completist.
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