Galaxie 500

Don't Let Our Youth Go to Waste 1987-1991 (Plexifilm)

Quantity over quality must have been the motto behind this compendium, which collects several hours' worth of live footage -- including camcorder bootlegs shot in a high school gymnasium -- in its quest to compile a visual record of stark, strummy Galaxie 500. By far the most worthy portion of this twin-disc DVD is the handful of videos the band made in its four-year tenure; gritty, low-budget paisley/psychedelic mini-epics that turned up all too infrequently on late-night MTV. Before their acrimonious 1991 split, singer/guitarist Dean Wareham, bassist Naomi Yang, and drummer Damon Krukowski fashioned a few chords cribbed from "Pale Blue Eyes" and "Waiting for the Man" into a whole proto-slowcore career, basically defining what indie or alternative meant at the start of the '90s.

Aside from those gauzy, impressionistic videos and a few on-stage moments where something seemed to light a fire under the somnambulistic threesome, no one but the band's immediate families or serious masochists will find anything worth watching on the turgid second disc, with its broken-boombox sound and hand-held shakiness. -- Jeff Stratton

 
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