Reunion tours are a tricky thing.
Indie rock favorites Pavement attempted one in 2010 after a decade apart, with most reviews of the shows striking a positive note. Still, their Sasquatch Festival set nearly turned disastrous when front man Steve Malkmus—who was, apparently, completely tossed—got pretty angry with his band mates on stage. This resulted in several song restarts during an argument that lasted nearly 10 minutes.
When North Carolina rock band Archers of Loaf announced a reunion tour of their own in 2011, after a hiatus just as long as Pavement's, many wondered what the outcome would be. As someone who attended their set at that year's Sasquatch Festival, I can vouch for the success of their decision to reunite. It flat-out rocked.
But you don't have to take my word for it.
Director Gorman Bechard and What Were We Thinking Films immortalized two concerts from that reunion tour at Cat's Cradle in Chapel Hill, N.C. The result is a 90-minute-long rock-umentary teeming with Archers Of Loaf alt-punk goodness. In the opening scene, the band rips through its hit "Audio Whore" bouncing around the stage like they're 20 years younger. Lead singer and guitarist Eric Bachmann's gravelly voice careens over the music and into a packed crowd almost as powerfully as it did 10 years earlier.
Tucked into the concert vignettes are interviews with each band member. And while not super insightful or eloquent, they add a nice touch—you really gain an understanding of how the band feels about their successes after years of reflection. Just don't expect to learn any earth-shattering trivia about the band's name. You won't. As the members explain, it means absolutely nothing and wasn't picked for any good reason.