Meet Me In the Bathroom – Film Review

Meet Me In the Bathroom – Film Review
By Fran Winston

Directed by: Will Lovelace, Dylan Southern
Starring: The Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Rapture, Interpol

In cinemas March 10th

If the title of this documentary has sent you into a giddy frenzy then chances are you are already hot-footing it to the cinema without even reading this review. It is in fact the name of a song by the Strokes, inspired by lead singer Julian Casablancas’s rumoured relationship with Hole singer Courtney Love.

If you’ve never heard of that track then you might need a bit more convincing to go and see this documentary that contextualises the New York City music scene of the early 90s with the global tragedy of 9/11 and the growing upheavals in the music industry.

Featuring plenty of live footage and archival interviews this tries to get to the heart of what motivated bands such as the Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Rapture and Interpol. Of course, they wanted fame, but they also wanted their voices to be heard. Following the World Trade Centre attack, they found themselves at the centre of a new zeitgeist and they navigated it as best they could.

As the industry changed and outlets such as MTV became unavailable to them, it became all about the live experience – including the UK tour. Not only did this bring them closer to their fans but at the birth of streaming, it couldn’t be downloaded. Essentially the business went back to basics.

Karen O of the Yeah, Yeah Yeahs proves particularly engaging. Her story could make a documentary of its own – a Korean-American musician for whom music was an escape from racism and sexism.

As could The Strokes who, far from being starving artists and post-punk pioneers, met in a Swiss boarding school and whose fathers were wealthy show business giants. Did someone say nepo babies?

This retrospective will evoke many memories. It is a fascinating trip down memory lane. You don’t learn much more than you could by reading Wikipedia but you do appreciate the energy of these acts and the music is wonderful.


Categories: Header, Movie Review, Movies

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