DVD Review: Motley Crue – “The End”
Motley Crue are a band that without question are probably known for being one of the most reckless bands of the 80s, 90s, and even the 2000s to a degree (if you count Vince Neils activites outside of the band). The band decided to call it a day on New Years Eve in 2015 with their final show at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, as Nikki Sixx says, “We’re going to end it where we started it.”
We start off with a nice documentary style intro, showing footage of the load in, set up with comments from Mick Mars, and snippits of fan comments acknowledging that this will be the bands last hurrah before the live stuff really gets going. Like a true rock and roll show, it kicks off with some of the classics with Girls Girls Girls and Wild Side which sees the additions of Allison Kyler and Sofia Toufa on backing dancer and backing vocal duties which actually serves to compliment Neil’s voice, as his vocal range, while still competent, isn’t what it used to be.
Tracks like Primal Scream, Don’t Go Away Mad and Smokin’ In The Boys Room still hold up well live, to the point that if you weren’t even a fan at the time, the live versions played decades later will make a believer out of you, if the presentation hasn’t already done that job for you. If watching Nikki’s flamethrower bass in action during Shout At The Devil doesn’t excite you, check your rock membership card at the door and walk.
The solos are worth the price of admission alone, watching Tommy Lee’s rollercoaster drum solo is impressive just for the production value alone, to the point where you actually feel queasy looking at the upside down view. The rollercoaster mechanism breaks down part way through, leaving Lee stuck behind the kit, and to the directors credit, they left the botch in as Tommy saw the funny side and climbed down the structure as he introduced Mick Mars for his guitar solo.
For obvious health reasons, you won’t see Mick Mars running around like Nikki Sixx, but as the old saying goes, it’s the quiet ones that you watch out for. What Mars lacks in stage presence, he more than makes up for in skill alone, although I do wish they hadn’t slow-mo’d some of the solo, production wise it just looked out of place.
The clock struck midnight, and Crüe ring in 2016 with Kickstart My Heart, and while it was arranged as a seated show, all the asses are off the seats. The band sound on form for this show, Vince and Nikki’s chemistry is still there all those decades later. The show wraps up with Home Sweet Home, which serves as a fitting end to not only the set, but the bands career.
As someone who saw some live footage from Download 2015, I really wasn’t expecting a lot out of this release, but this is one instance where I’m happy to be proved wrong. It’s a nicely produced feature which covers every aspect of the monstrous stage set up. It’s only fault are the slow motion scenes which were added for effect, but they serve more for an unwelcome distraction. The songs still sound great live, it has pyro, it has dancers. What’s not to like?