Eagle Vision [Release date 30.09.16]
New Scorpions documentary ‘Forever and A Day’ was filmed on what was supposed to be that band’s farewell tour and climaxes with their final show in Munich, as such it is reflective, honest and insightful. It is also one of the best music documentaries I have seen for several years.
The interviews are mostly in German and will require the use of the subtitle function but that does not detract from the actual content – with great archive footage from the bands inception in 1965 up to the point of no return, sort of.
Also featuring live footage from across the band’s lengthy career, this includes the 1989 Moscow Peace Festival, Russian tour footage from 1988 (when the band were the first Western artists to play 21 shows across Russia), the Scorpions breaking America in 1979 (when everybody told them they couldn’t incidentally) and recent footage from the likes of Lebanon, Paris, Moscow and Bangkok.
There are some awesome stories told here by the band themselves, past members, management and producers. The highlight here is former Russian President Gorbachev talking about the band as friends- they had released ‘Winds of Change’ in Russian and had been invited to meet him at the Kremlin just 10 or 11 days before the breakup of the Soviet Union.
The best quote of the film though comes from an unnamed American fan in the early ‘80’s who states ‘They are the best band in America. Even though they are from Germany’- priceless, it highlights just how successful the band became there in that era. We also learn that ‘Still Loving You’ is still the biggest selling single ever in France.
From the band’s early days they have always had it written into their contracts that their albums would be released wherever they played- and this is one of the many reasons that their fan base has remained so loyal.
That said, the band were not always as popular at home as they were outside Germany and they also struggled in the ‘90’s when they felt old fashioned and out of place- luckily this period soon passed for the Scorpions and there is some good footage of the band with the Berlin Philharmonic from this time.
Then we have the build up to what is supposed to be the final show of the final tour in Munich in December 2012. This is a poignant moment for a band that in that year alone had played 72 sold out shows in 24 countries.
Hold on a minute though, we then get the band performing on MTV Unplugged in 2013 and the realisation that they have not retired as planned, thankfully. The Scorpions are still going strong nearly 4 years after that supposed final show and have recently replaced drummer James Kottak with Motorhead’s Mikkey Dee and for now have no end in sight.
The Munich show from 2012 itself comes as a bonus disc here or as a stand-alone DVD. If this was indeed the band’s final show then it is a hell of a one to have gone out on- packed with almost 2 hours of favourites such as ‘The Zoo’, ‘Hit Between The Eyes’, ‘Loving You Sunday Morning,’, ‘Rock You Like A Hurricane’, ‘Blackout’ and ‘Winds of Change’, the energy and performance is immense.
This DVD is not to be left out of the collection of any Scorpions fan. *****
Review by Nikk Gunns
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