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1991: Year Punk Broke [VHS]

4.6 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews


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Product Details

  • Actors: Sonic Youth, Kim Gordon, Lee Ranaldo, Steve Shelley, Thurston Moore
  • Directors: David Markey
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Geffen Records
  • VHS Release Date: April 12, 1993
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6302761271
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #170,706 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Sonic Youth, Nirvana, More

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on June 17, 1999
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
Despite what the previous reviewer said, I think Thurston's narration is hilarious. This video is a great anthropological look into "alternative" music circa 1991. The reason it was called "Punk" is because for America, Nirvana and others commercial success from the fringes of music industry recalls the Sex Pistols, the Buzzcocks and the Clash's commercial success in England in 1976 thru 1978. Punk was never commercially viable in the USA, and bands like Black Flag, X, the Minutemen and the Germs never got to soak the benefits (or lack there of...) of fame. I guess, as a Nirvana fan, the only thing this film needed was more Kurt. Other great performances here include Babes in Toyland's "Dustcake Boy," Dinosaur Jr.'s "The Wagon" and a fast "Commando" by the Ramones. I'm hungry damn it. Where can I find me a pig's head?
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Format: VHS Tape
This is my favourite film, I bought the video a couple of years ago & have watched it seemingly hundreds of times because it is pure fun. Thurston really became a hero for more resons than the excelelnt music w/ raps & rants like "tonight will be the night that the skies will open & spray forth the divine hand & poisoned finger & say everybody 'you're not just a duck, you are human, YOU ARE HUMAN! go forth, go forth & thrash'" which then segues into Negative creep by Nirvana. Kim & J talking is amusing. Dave & Krist pouring wine & fruit everywhere & Kurt being quiet generally except for ramming himself into the drums & spraying SY w/ beer. The onstage performances are generally brilliant, Thurston almost hangs off the front of the stage @ 1 point. Also notable is Courtney's 1st step into fame thanks to an mtv creew showing up. There's a lot more moments I could mention but you should watch it for yrself. Also recommened for Nirvana fans wanting to find out about Sonic Youth [you need to]. Oh whoever mentioned that 1st Teen Spirit performance that was in the Hype! film which focussed on Seattle whereas this here is more broad.
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Format: DVD
The wait is finally over! The sound is surprisingly mindblowing and the picture quality looks great too. Kim's bass in Schizophrenia almost made me lose my crap, for sure.

The Nirvana stuff sounds great and powerhouse as hell along with the other bands who are all amazing and long time favorites of mine. A lot of the scenes that were pretty dark and grainy come in a lot better now, obviously. You really can see it when Thurston is singing "Needles and Pins" in front of those crazy ass fair looking rides (King Kong, Cheetah etc).

To me, the extras alone are worth the price of the DVD included is a 40 minute bonus film, (This is Known As) The Blues Scale, which has more footage from the tours. Extra live Sonic Youth songs included are Inhuman, White Kross, Orange Rolls, Angels Spit, Eric's Trip, and freakin' Chapel Hill....all are amazing. There is also an awesome live version of In Bloom by Nirvana. Not only is the live footage great, but there is some other classic Thurston and crew insanity that didn't make the original film. Another cool addition is a Q & A with Dave Markey, Thurston, Lee, Steve, and J. Mascis about the film/tours and rough edits of Mote and Flower. Again, the bonus features are worth the price of the DVD alone if you are a Sonic Youth fan.

The Year Punk Broke is seriously one of my favorite movies of any kind ever.....this cemented my love for Sonic Youth as my favorite band when I was in like 7th grade (1994). If you've seen it and loved it, then this is pretty much a no brainer to get. Many thanks to Dave Markey for filming this and putting it together!! Crank it up for sure!

Kim, have you seen your trainer today?
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Format: VHS Tape
A very humorous and fascinating look at Nirvana and Sonic Youth's 1991 European Tour. There is a classic bathroom scene with Thurston Moore that is one of the highlights of this documentary. The most interesting thing about this film is seeing Nirvana before the explosion of "Smells Like Teen Spirit". It's hard to believe that at one time they were just three guys who were opening for Sonic Youth. Dinosaur Jr. plays a few legs of the tour and J. Mascis contributes to the humor of the film. The spontaneousness of this back stage glimpse makes "The Year Punk Broke" a classic moment in time in the history of true alternative music.
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Format: VHS Tape
Sonic Youth, Nirvana, Mudhoney, Dinosaur Jr., Babes in Toyland...bands that mass (misdirected) media tried to co-opt into a fabricated category called "grunge," demeaning the bands' roots and artistic vision...to purists, though, their music was punk. This video excellently captures that crazy time when distortion, feedback, and unusual tunings were appreciated and accepted as standard musical conventions. My personal highlights include Lee Ranaldo and Thurston Moore playing slide guitar with a drumstick and Nirvana generally trashing sets. Long live punk rock! DGC, release this on DVD!
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Format: VHS Tape
This is simply a great film filled with brilliant live performances - especially those of Sonic Youth, who takes center stage - and amusing backstage antics peppered with cultural commentary. Thurston Moore is our playfully arrogant yet lovable tourguide on this brief fun-filled romp through Europe. The film very effectively takes the pulse of the early "alternative" scene. There is a sort of fleeting, magical excitment here in the air that only comes at a turning point. This was the climax of the underground, with Sonic Youth and their peers starting to "make it" but not fully. I could also see here how the social and creative cohesion of Sonic Youth have helped them be so prolific and experimental, while Nirvana was more about energy, emotion, and ultimately self-destruction. One of the highlights is Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit," which is refreshingly played as just another fun, energetic song rather than a statement which forever changed the landscape of rock music and youth culture. Sonic Youth's "Dirty Boots" is truly exceptional, filled with urgency and ending with some painfully beautiful improvisation. A very satisfying taste of what must have been an incredible tour.
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