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INXS: What You Need - The Video Hits Collection
Reviewing a compilation of music videos is not exactly the same as reviewing a movie; basically, it's much, much easier. For example, I really like the band INXS. Been a big fan since the mid-80s. (If I hated the band's music, I certainly wouldn't agree to sit through 20 of their videos!) So if you the reader are sitting in your chair right now thinking, "Yeah, me too! INXS rocks!," then I can absolutely and wholeheartedly recommend that you pick up What You Need next time you're out DVD shopping.
No extra features, no bells and whistles; just twenty rock-solid music videos from INXS, presented in your choice of three different audio formats. Sure, I could "review" each of the videos separately on their individual artistic merits -- but c'mon, these are music videos. They're marketing clips created to sell a band, a CD, or a DVD. At best they're slick and flashy; at worst they're weird and pretentious. But the music's the thing, of course. And that leaves me with a bottom line that reads like this:
If you dig the band, you'll love this DVD. If you don't dig the band, you're probably not even reading this review in the first place. So to my fellow INXS fans I'll just say this disc is a no-brainer. Even if you like only half of the tracks included on the DVD, it's still worth the 12 bucks the stores are asking. Heck, you probably spent that much on the Greatest Hits CD ... and this is a DVD!
1. Just Keep Walking - Dir: Gary Page (1980, from the album INXS)
2. The One Thing - Dir: Soren Jensen (1982, from the album Shabooh Shoobah)
3. Don't Change - Dir: Scott Hicks (1982, from the album Shabooh Shoobah)
4. Original Sin - Dir: Yashuiko Yamamota (1984, from the album The Swing)
5. This Time - Dir: Peter Sinclair (1985, from the album Listen Like Thieves)
6. What You Need - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1985, from the album Listen Like Thieves)
7. Kiss the Dirt (Falling Down the Mountain) - Dir: Alex Proyas (1985, from the album Listen Like Thieves)
8. Listen Like Thieves - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1985, from the album Listen Like Thieves)
9. Need You Tonight - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1987, from the album Kick)
10. Mediate - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1987, from the album Kick)
11. Devil Inside - Dir: Joel Schumacher (1987, from the album Kick)
12. Never Tear Us Apart - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1987, from the album Kick)
13. New Sensation - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1987, from the album Kick)
14. Mystify - Dir: Hamish Cameron (1987, from the album Kick)
15. Suicide Blonde - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1990, from the album X)
16. Disappear - Dir: Claudia Castle (1990, from the album X)
17. Shining Star - Dir: David Mallet (1991, from the album Live Baby Live)
18. Beautiful Girl - Dir: Mark Pellington (1992, from the album Welcome to Wherever You Are)
19. The Gift - Dir: Richard Lowenstein (1993, from the album Full Moon, Dirty Hearts)
20. Elegantly Wasted - Dir: Walter Stern (1997, from the album Elegantly Wasted)
It's a damn good collection of the band's best tracks, but personally I was hoping for a few more tunes from the 1992 Welcome... CD, which I still think is one damn underrated album. The only semi-obscure omission I'd love to see on this DVD? A song called Good Times that INXS recorded for the Lost Boys soundtrack.
And yeah, it's more than a little bittersweet to revisit these old tunes after seeing what happened to INXS frontman Michael Hutchence -- but, hey, we'll always have the music!
Video: All the videos are presented in their original Full Frame format, and they look just as good here as they did during Heavy Rotation on MTV.
Audio: Choose between Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, 5.1 Surround or a seriously rockin' DTS track. Frankly there's no excuse for sub-par audio quality on a compilation of old rock videos, so a hearty high-five to Rhino Video (and The Best Seat in the House) for delivering the best of INXS in a fine aural presentation.
Extras: Nary a one to be found, although you can choose to watch the videos individually or as part of a chronological "play all" feature ... and it's pretty fun to see the evolution of the band between 1980 and 1997.
Summing up? Twenty videos from a band I really like. Not all the tracks are classics, but I'm quite pleased to add this platter to my collection. If you're a fan of the INXS vibe, I suspect you'll feel precisely the same way.
(And R.I.P., Mr. Hutchence. You may have been one crazy rock dude, but the INXS fans still miss ya.)