VARIOUS ARTISTS - Bam Margera presents: Viva La Bands Volume 2
Bam Margera is a stuntman, a movie director, an actor, a skateboarder (even featured in the Tony Hawks video games), a keyboarder and even cheated on his girlfriend with pop star Jessica Simpson. His new compilation consists of a CD and a DVD.
The CD features bands that Bam Margera especially likes. I wonder who exactly is interested in what Bam Margera likes to listen to. About a decade ago, German soccer star Mehmet Scholl did more or less the same thing (without a DVD) without much success. There are some really good songs on the album. I especially like Priestess (who sound a little like Danzig), Clutch (who play earthy, timeless rock), Vacant Thoughts (nice indie rock) and Dimmu Borgir (again a masterpiece of symphonic black metal). There are some more quite good tracks (In Flames, Children Of Bodom, A Life Once Lost,…), but some are a criminal violation to my ears. Isn’t Mr Margera too old to listen to Bloodhound Gang? GWAR are just a bore these days, and there are some electro bands that can’t convince me either. Worst part of the record are the six minutes of pure dilettantism by Gnarkill, a band that certainly wouldn’t be featured if Bam Margera weren’t their keyboarder.
About a third of the tracks have been exclusively written for this compilation, which might be an argument for purchasing it. But the arbitrary choice of too different styles makes it rather difficult to listen to the album without being tempted to push the skip button several times.
The DVD is nearly an hour long and has a promising start with two guys playing basketball with melons on bicycles. The following sketches are mostly insignificant. The guy with mustard in his butt makes you smile a little, but the other clips aren’t worth watching. This material from the stunt show Viva La Bam was never shown on TV before and I can understand why. Viva La Bam isn’t as entertaining as Jackass which pioneered the genre. There is too much talk and very often, too many people talk and laugh at the same time, so that you can’t understand a single word. Skinning of a live frog is the most questionable kind of entertainment, and might be for some reason enough to boycot this product.
The CD contains about 75% of good if rarely exciting music. With a DVD that should only be used as a frisbee disc, you should ask yourself if the handful of exclusive tracks justify purchasing this compilation, as most major music magazines come with just as good or sometimes better, and free, compilation CDs.