DVD Review: "The Color of Noise"

At a nearly exhaustive 120 minutes, The Color of Noise, which tells the story of Amphetamine Reptile Records and its founder, ex-U.S. Marine Tom Hazelmyer, might just be the definitive retrospective on the Minneapolis-based record label. The Color of Noise fun fact No. 1 – Hazelmyer discovered iconic New York noise merchants Helmet. Yes, that’s something you learn by watching The Color of Noise. The main selling point of this DVD is the music, clearly. There’s live footage of The Cows and interviews with the band as well as live footage of Hazelmyer’s own outfit Halo of Flies – and that’s not to mention the likes of Boss Hog, the Melvins, Helmet, Hammerhead, Unsane, Supernova, Nashville Pussy, Calvin Krime, who are also featured here. A portion of The Color of Noise is also devoted to the troupe of artists Hazelmyer commissioned, including Frank Kozik, Chris Mars, Coop, Sheperd Fairey, for vinyl, CD and poster artwork, which helped to breathe life back into the concert poster-as-serious-art movement that still continues today. Yes, the next time you see a colorful and interesting album cover or tour poster – you can probably thank Hazelmyer for that. The Color of Noise fun fact No. 2 – a lot of people like Hazelmyer, which becomes clear after seeing and hearing his friends and collaborators heap praise upon him. The Color of Noise is often humorous and irreverent, just as Hazelmyer and Amphetamine Reptile Records were, and after watching it, you’ll be quick to realize this story couldn’t be told any other way.

Grade: B+