As close as you can get to a real life Spinal Tap and probably the best music documentary ever made.
Dig! follows the hugely contrasting fortunes of The Brian Jonestown Massacre and the Dandy Warhols from unsigned newcomers to major label smashes and back again.
The Dandy’s and Jonestown start off as friends and peers but things turn sour as the genius of Anton Newcombe is lost in the midst of his erratic behavior. Anton and the other members of BJM have every right to feel aggrieved with the final cut as extensive footage of in band fighting and drug addled interviews takes up much more screen time then the countless successful gigs the band must have played over the seven years in which Dig! was filmed. This does make for a more entertaining film however and while editing can change perspective the camera itself doesn’t lie.
Dig! is quite unique in as much as the actual music takes a backseat as Matt Hollywood, Joel Gion and Anton from the Brian Jonestown Massacre have so much charisma and tension between them that you almost forget the whole point is for them to play music together.
It is not all sensationalism though, Dig! shows what life is like for a band on the road and also talks to various music industry types who give a great insight into what goes on behind the scenes. Dig! is arguably a more important and impressive work than anything either band has produced musically.
You don’t have to be a fan of alternative music to (bohemian) like this excellent piece of work.