In my eyes there are essentially two types of music documentary; those which look into the band behind the music (such as Rush’s Beyond The Lighted Stage) and those which explore the music in-depth (any of the Classic Albums docs or the likes of Metal: A Handbangers Journey).
In It Stinks Of Eyes Around Here, the first film to get behind the scenes on one of Ginger Wildheart’s tours, we are treated to the former as we see the band (Ginger, Random Jon Poole, Chris Catalyst, Jase Edwards and support act Jackdaw4 along with guitar tech Dunc, manager Gav and bus driver Gordon) go from venue to venue, and incident to incident, throughout their 2011 summer acoustic tour.
Across the hour-long main film, put together by the team at AshTV, we get to see what the band get up to on the road and backstage, from make up application (including some excellent designs by Ginger’s son) to Jon Poole’s spontaneous songs, all of which comes together to paint a picture of a group of performers who as well as being bandmates are clearly mates too which gives the live clips included an extra sense of the community aspect I discussed in my review of Ginger’s Kiss Alive II album.
Alongside the backstage clips and live clips, we get some talking head interview segments from the band members which are also great fun and, as expected, not entirely serious, as we get their views on spending time in a van which each other for long periods as well as some tongue in cheek back slapping about their musical prowess.
Undeniably the discs star is not Ginger but long-time compatriot ‘Random’ Jon Poole who, if this is anything to go by, is a non-stop monster of songs, bad jokes and general tomfoolery on and off stage.
Away from the documentary we get a set of live videos recorded across the tour which, while sometimes basic, capture the essence of this tour’s shows with some great music combined with some frankly surreal goings on stage, particularly from the band’s driver, and former Raging Speedhorn drummer, Gordon Morison, as a morose clown.
My general view of music documentaries and live films is that, if they are successful, I will come away from them wanting to pick up guitar and make some noise. Well, taking that theory into account, I can safely say I came away from It Stinks Of Eyes Around Here wanting to not just play some music but go on a tour very much like this.