The Savage Animal 07.10.13: The Videography Of Audioslave
Posted by Mikey MiGo on 07.10.2013
You’d think Cornell and the Machine would have been bigger, but despite some good rock songs they proved once again that the “super group” concept isn’t meant for longevity. In this 352nd edition of The Savage Animal, Mike watches, critiques and rocks out to the music video collection of Audioslave. This, Money in the Bank predictions, a movie review, a skeptical look at the 300 sequel, and more. Click it or ticket! It’s the law!
"Money In The Bank Predictions": The card for this show is kind of stacked. On paper this card doesn't scream out "classic", but it does scream out "sleeper card of the year". There isn't a whole lot that makes me think I'm in for a big classic moment in WWE's history outside of the hindsight of the MITB winner. The Money In The Bank Matches are going to be fun, but the rest of the card is more "interesting" than "exciting".
Curtis Axel is going defeat The Miz. I don't like it. I want to see The Miz get another run in the main event. I think there is still a lot of untapped potential there, but his face character is weak and reminds me of Dane Cook. Axel can't lose this early in his run. The only way is if CM Punk gets involved.
It sucks, but I'd be dumb to not automatically assume John Cena wins over Mark Henry. I'd love to see Mark Henry get the belt for a few months but betting against John Cena is never a good idea. I like Mark Henry's end of the storyline, but I can't see this match being good. We've seen John Cena vs. Mark Henry for like ten years now. There is nothing fresh about it and I highly doubt they'll break out the creative for it.
With Alberto not having his personal ring announcer at his side, it's pretty hard to imagine he'd steal the win over Dolph Ziggler. Everyone wants Dolph to have his belt back, myself included… THAT is why I think Alberto Del Rio gets the win. Regardless, they'll have to have a blow off to this feud at Summerslam. Let's hope we'll get that Ladder Match they owe us from Extreme Rules. That'd be rocktastic.
Two championship matches on the card have gotten some good build up, but I'm just not into the pairings of performers. AJ Lee and Kaitlyn is having one of the better female storylines in a while and both are doing good with it, but there's just something about their chemistry that's not clicking. AJ Lee is going to retain her belt sending Kaitlyn into an even deeper craze. The other title match is The Shield vs. The Usos. This match has gotten a push, but it feels really forced and uncomfortable. I don't dislike the Usos, I'm just not convinced they're going to bring anything new to the table. They wrestle the same way they did when they came in and their matches all feel exactly the same. There is nothing special or memorable about them. Their entrance is "interesting", but not cool or exciting. They spent YEARS as being the low card enhancement team. They'd be destroyed by big wrestlers and monsters, lose to random people on the C shows, and were in all due respect really talented jobbers. Rebuild and reintroduce The Usos, It's all perception though. I get that. If they're a convincing performer we can dispend belief and get behind them. I just can't. It would be like if out of nowhere that the Three Man Band started dominating people and were treated as a serious threat. It doesn't feel like a natural push. It feels really forced. I know the face tag team ranks are REALLY slim, but pairing up Zack Ryder and Bo Dallas would have been more convincing at this point. The Shield has to win this.
I never thought I'd say this, but of all the singles matches I'm most intrigued by Jericho/Ryback. Ryback's run as a heel is interesting. It seems the more they let him be a mean bad ass the more entertaining he is. I just wish he'd not be SO CHEESY. The whole "Ryback Rules!" and before that the "Feed Me More!" thing is lame. It's like Ultimate Warrior C-list material. The thing that's interesting is that he COULD rebound HUGE if he gets the kinks out of this newer personality. It could be like how The Rock came in as a cheesy babyface and then went heel as "The Rock", but got over and became a huge face in the process. It'll be a process for sure. One way to get that process moving a long in whatever direction it will, is putting him in there with Chris Jericho. Jericho can make bad wrestlers look good and good wrestlers look great. I'm interested in this match because I want to see how they tell the story. Will it be something different? Will Ryback gain something from this to make him more legit? I think Jericho can do that. Ryback gets the win here unless they pull some kind of weird storyline.
The B-Team Money In The Bank Match seems like it could be a lot of fun. We have Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes, Damien Sandow, Dean Ambrose, Fandango, Jack Swagger, and Antonio Cesaro in there. Automatically, you can start doing some subtractions. Swagger just got off a title feud run that sucked. He's not going to win so it's safe to assume his new partner in Antonio Cesaro isn't going to either. It looked like Christian and Dean Ambrose are going to feud to that'll take them out of both of their matches. Cody Rhodes would be an awesome winner, but he and Sandow are being too de-pushed lately for them to pull the trigger that randomly. This leaves the former IC Champion Wade Barrett and the a-little-too-quiet-lately Fandango. I could see them FINALLY pulling the trigger on Barrett and letting him get a shot at the big gold belt. It's the safest and most logical pick. I'm going to go with the shock and awe pick of Fandango getting the case. I'm not saying he'll cash in and win, but he could EASILY win the Money In The Bank match. Him being creepy with the brief case could be a lot of fun. I really feel he was going to get the IC Title instead of Curtis Axel, but his injury screwed things up. Logically, it's Barrett. The fun surprise would be Fandango. Anyone else not named Jack Swagger would also be a welcomed surprise.
The "All-Star" Money In The Bank Match has potential to be amazing. Anytime we can put Daniel Bryan and RVD in the same Ladder Match I'm going to sit my ass down and watch the damn thing. This match does not have John Cena, Mark Henry, Ryback, Triple H, or anyone that wouldn't add to it. Kane and Sheamus are bigger guys, but Kane is awesome in these matches and Sheamus seems to be pretty creative with spots lately. Then of course we have CM Punk and Randy Orton. Off the bat, Punk has Brock in his sights and Christian is back and feuding with Ambrose. It would be awesome to RVD win the match, but I doubt they'd pull that off after him spending time in TNA. I think this comes down to Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan. Their storyline has elevated to the point where throwing in a Money In The Bank briefcase would really be a nice prop. This is one of the few things Randy Orton hasn't accomplished yet, but I think Daniel Bryan gets the win. He's on fire these days.
I'm optimistic about this show. If I'm surprised, I win. Pay Per Views like this gives a less predictable feeling going in because of all the "what if" scenarios they could pull off. This should be good. Famous last words?
THE VIDEOGRAPHY OF AUDIOSLAVE
Cornell and the Machine! This was a "super group" or a "mesh-up group" from the early 00's. We get the vocalist from Soundgarden, arguably the REAL best "grunge era" band, in Chris Cornell. We take that awesomeness and pair it up with one of the most influential rock-metal bands of the 90's in the band that was Rage against the Machine. So that meant we had Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk in a band again, but this time fronted by Cornell. That's just one bad ass collection of super music powers.
They put out three albums and had some pretty nice success. It wasn't as mind blowing as their more known projects, but it was some solid rock and roll music in a time when not many people were doing it anymore. I don't know why, but people seem to really like trashing this band. I know some perspectives don't like it because of Cornell's involvement and others just didn't like the music they made. I don't think we all have to agree on all music preferences, but I just never got the "hate".
Here are the music videos of Audioslave…
Director: Mark Romanek
This was such a bad ass rock song when it came out. When it first came out it got tons of play and then seemed to fade away after a while. The thing about this song is that it's been a few years since I actually put in the effort to listen to it and it definitely holds up. The video is directed by the always amazing Mark Romanek. We see Cornell on a platform just chilling and hanging out. Then we see the band driving to the said platform. They get there, fireworks go off and the band rocks the hell out. There's nothing too flashy about the video outside of the flashy stuff. What I'm trying to say is that the concept is simple. A singer and a band hook up and make a bad ass rock song as fireworks go off in celebration of the event. The video is almost like an "origin story" for the band. Pretty bad ass if you think about it. Rating: 8.5
Track: "Like a Stone"
Director: Meiert Avis
I remember this song popping up in some movies and promotional things at the time. It's a solid down-tempo slow burn of a rock song. The video is set in an old mansion that Jimi Hendrix once lived and wrote in. Not a whole lot goes on in this video. It's basically all location, musicianship, vibe, and a lot of great cinematography. The video doesn't do the song justice. The look of it is great, but it's just too subdued of a video. Looking good is not entertaining good. Rating: 7.25
Track: "Show Me How to Live"
Director: A/V Club
I always dug this video. We see an old school radio DJ introducing the band as the intro kicks in. The band is apparently on the run from the law. We see a whole bunch of small town/1970's looking cops setting up a road block and preparing to take down what seems like harden criminals. Meanwhile, the and just casually cruises in their car. The cops start chasing them down, but they fail and crash in what turns out to be some cool ass stunt driving and crashing. The rock out portion is really cool. They know they're in for trouble, so they just let loose on the big rocking break that comes for the chorus. It's a really cool video. And really, in retrospect, this was a really cool "second rock out" single. The first, "Cochise", was bad ass and then they followed it up with the ballad. I guess that's the traditional formula for a reason. Then they bring out THIS song, which is arguably even better than the first big single. Based on these three singles, this album should get way more credit than it does. Rating: 8.5
Track: "Be Yourself"
Album: "Out of Exile"
Director: Francis Lawrence
This video is a lot like their "Like a Stone" one. It's mainly them, atmosphere, the music, the vibe, and that's it. Francis Lawrence did an awesome job at capturing the moment here, but it's not all that remarkable in terms of narration or rewatchablity. I'd listen to the song plenty, but the video is lackluster despite looking nice. If you were a fan of the WWE during the mid to late 2000's then you were forced to hear this song about a dozen billion times. It just got really worn out for me despite being a really good down tempo track. It's got a positive message and all of that and still maintains a strong edge. What I'm saying is that it doesn't feel "soft". Rating: 7.0
Track: "Your Time Has Come"
Album: "Out of Exile"
Director: Steve Rees
This video isn't all that remarkable either. It's basically a typical "live concert video", but the big difference is the band is playing in Cuba. It was a history making moment. They capture a lot of cool moments, but the flow doesn't kill it. A lot of times a music video like this is an uncreative cop out to just get something out there or to do what everyone else does. Audioslave doesn't do that here. On this one especially, they make a familiar style work to their benefit.. Sounds like something you could have said about their music. I think this song is an underrated gem in their singles collection. It's not as impactful as their other rock anthem tracks, but it's one of those songs that just works in the form of a video. Rating: 6.75
Track: "Doesn't Remind Me"
Album: "Out of Exile"
Director: Chris Milk
I remember seeing this video and being taken back by it. The cinematography has a more gritty and natural "independent film" vibe to it. The song is pretty good, but when you hear in the context of this video it makes it pretty great. The video really pulls at you while looking outstanding. The narrative sneaks up on you and makes it a whole different song. We follow the story of a little boy who is getting ready for boxing meet. He plays with airplanes a little, but the focus is on the boxing. We finally see the fight and it turns out his father died in the military and each punch brings back a memory. It's some really powerful stuff. My description can't do the raw emotion of this video any justice at all. Rating: 9.5
Track: "Original Fire"
Director: P. R. Brown
This video instantly reminds me of the old RAGE video for "Renegades of Funk" or even the "Take Me Out" vid by Franz Ferdinand. It's not that it's badly made because it holds up to both of those mentioned videos. It's just nothing too ground breaking. The band rocks out as words, images, and animations swirl around them. We see shots of inspirational figures, keywords, and tons of drawing-looking animation on top of that. It's okay, but I'll forget about this video before I wake up tomorrow. That's not a good sign. Rating: 6.75
Director: Danny Clinch
Another "sit around and play" video? Yeesh. They're all great at what they do, but some added theatrics and maybe a hint of a narrative would go a long way. I love seeing Tom Morello play as much as anyone with a soul, but this is too much. Why do all the "down tempo" type of tunes get this kind of video treatment? Would be too crazy if a song with an up-beat energy got a cool "sit around and play" video? Probably. You know why? Because those kind of videos can get boring! I'm not saying this specific video is boring. It's well done and all of that, but it's just repetitive at this point. The way the background screen is set up for each member it looks almost like they had planned to use the footage in a different way and just threw this together after the fact. Who knows? For as nice as it looks, it's just kind of there. It's sadly kind of fitting that this would be the last music video the band made before breaking up. Rating: 7.0
Track: "One and the Same"
Director: Danny Clinch
So they must have had some footage from the "Revelations" left over. It's the same exact set up and shots, but it's just better. The song is more up tempo and more of a rocker. The cuts and the shots work better for this one though. The shots and the tone match up nicely. Fun video. Rating: 7.25
Track: "Until We Fall"
The band is obviously broken up at this point. This video is made up of candid backstage footage mixed in with awesome shots of the band playing live. They all seem to be having a blast doing their thing. It's a shame the good times in this video didn't translate to a creative connection between everyone. This band could have done some really cool things if they found their rhythm together. Moments like that captured in the video are really cool. I guess this is a nice wrap up to a solid three album run. Rating: 7.5
In this movie Jason Bateman plays a dude named Sandy Patterson. He gets his identity stolen by a loud and somewhat-sleazy woman played by Melissa McCarthy. The name confusion results in a lot of the obvious "but that's a girl's name" jokes. Eventually, Bateman finds McCarthy in Florida and has to get her to come back to Denver so charges can be pressed and Bateman can get his dream job. It's a stretch. A few years back, before the technology boom, I got about $20 charged online from someone who somehow got my number. To get the charges dropped and to get the money credited back was as simple as one drunken phone call. This is "now" and Bateman's character has plenty more means than I do. I kept thinking about this through the movie so maybe my own personal logic got in the way. In "the way" of what? I don't know. I actually did like this movie. I know I set it up to knock it down, but it was a pretty amusing movie. Melissa McCarthy is on her A-game and Bateman plays that over the top straight man perfectly. They had good chemistry and the comedic beats all hit hard. There are some zany characters, jokes that are set up and knocked down, and character reveals here. It's a road comedy. You know what will happen, so why should I spoil the ride. It's a "two strangers have to have a road movie" comedy that always seem to rock. It goes back to ‘Tommy Boy' and before that was ‘Planes, Trains, and Automobiles'. These movies tend on being awesome. This wasn't on the level of those movies, but it's still worth checking out. The rest of the cast isn't anything to sleep on either. Then again it would be hard to sleep on the lines of Jon Favreau, Amanda Peet, Morris Chestnut, John Cho, Robert Patrick, Eric Stonestreet, Jonathan Banks, and others. The problem is that the movie didn't get enough love. For some reason I haven't heard a lot of people talk about seeing his. It just didn't connect with a mass audience, but it's good enough to have an endless run on basic cable. THAT is when I'd recommend watching this. I think a perfect viewing would be a random Sunday afternoon where you just want to chill out and watch a good movie. This is one of those movies. B
"Worst Case Scenario" is a new take on the concept of "fantasy booking". For years professional wrestling fans would spend endless hours of thinking up the coolest things that could happen. Why waste the energy? This only leads to high expectations. "Worst Case Scenario" flips that. Instead of looking through rose colored glasses, let's take a bi-weekly look at the worst possible scenarios in professional wrestling. I'm not going to be malicious or anything too mean, but I will not refrain from letting my brain come up with the worst possible shit I can. Sadly, it seems the writers and producers of mainstream TV wrestling and the mainstream iPPV level indies are doing the same thing but charging us for it. And now…
"A WWE/TNA Joint PPV!"
Not too long ago, TNA owner Dixie Carter was asked in an interview if she'd be open to the hypothetical idea of a TNA/WWE Pay Per View event. I don't think she brought it up like it was an idea she was hashing out, but it was asked and she answered. Still, it's an interesting thing to really think about.
First off, why the hell wouldn't she? It's true that TNA is doing good business for a wrestling promotion in 2013. I think people DO forget that fact. It's just when you compare it to the WWE, it's small. Why do you HAVE to compare it? Does every movie get compared to the most profitable one? Does every album get compared? I know wrestling is a monopoly that the WWE owns, but TNA is doing their thing. The problem is that their "thing" is rarely entertaining and worth watching. It's getting better, but it's still a struggle.
The WWE has no reason to ever give a shit about TNA. When they had that drama over Flair showing up for the Hall of Fame they were "given" Christian for one night. He showed up, did a little segment and was never seen again. The WWE and the TNA are NOT competition. TNA is a small minor niche league that the WWE knows it can pick and pull from whenever they decide someone is worth their investment. For a joint PPV to happen, the WWE would have to be FORCED into it. So for this hypothetical PPV event to happen it would have to be the result of legal actions or a settlement. So that's what it's going to be called "Settlement Wars" or "Legally Bound" or something else like that.
TNA would take it seriously. They'd have months of promos and tournaments and matches. They'd build it up and put in all of their best wrestlers. If it's a "Best of 7 Matches" show, I'd imagine they'd give us A.J. Styles, Bobby Roode, Abyss, Kurt Angle, Bully Ray, Jeff Hardy, and probably Sting. They'd all have to win wars and go through long and elaborate hell to get there.
The WWE would not take it serious at all. They'd have the announcers bring it up as little as possible. It would be snarky little mentions. They'd send their lower card to the show with a few obvious midcard choices. I'd imagine the WWE would send Zack Ryder, one of the Usos, Wade Barrett, Kofi Kingston, Kane, Broadus Clay, and maybe like Damien Sandow. There are some talented folks in that bunch, but it'll be guys they don't have something for at the moment or just people who are expendable stars. The thing is that after the PPV, the WWE would most likely want to keep these guys away for a while and reintroduce them slowly to wash off the stank of TNA.
So the actual show would be at a mid-level arena. One of the places the WWE runs house shows at that is also just big enough to run a TV taping from once every few years. Basically, a "third market". The show would be commentated by Mike Tenay and Josh Matthews. While the show is presented due to a legal settlement, the booking is in question. So I'd assume we'd have to go 3 wins vs. 3 wins and then some kind of shmozz finish or a coin toss. So no one really wins. Casual fans see Sting, Angle, Bubba Ray Dudley, and Jeff Hardy and wonder if TNA is a retirement home for old wrestlers. They'd have no idea why the WWE is facing off against these old guys and really good "no-names". Then those who do watch TNA would watch with the clear mindset that they're going to get embarrassed.
Vince should by TNA as soon as possible so this doesn't actually happen.
"300: Rise Of An Empire"
I thought 300 was a good movie. I saw it once in theatres on the IMAX screen so my one and only impression was a massive one. It wasn't a movie I wanted to see on DVD or on cable afterwards. Outside of the stunning visuals and great cinematography it was a story that you see once and that's all you need. There was never a reason to rewatch this. Now there's a sequel? What more do we need to see from this world? Didn't a lot of, if not all of those 300 Spartans die in the original? How can we call this 300? Or how about we go the 101 Dalmatians route and call this "301: Spartans Don't Die!" If it were called THAT, I'd be all for it. Then again, not really.
That's all for now! The fourth of July is over. It kind of sucks when a holiday falls in the middle of a week when you're attempting to keep a routine, maintain deadlines, and be productive. It pretty much screws up the entire week. I love the sentiment, but the festivities are loud. Especially if you live in Indiana like me. It's "Happy Birthday, America!" and "Happy Hillbilly Christmas, Indiana!" The lawless pursuit of fireworks is just chaos! Chaos, I tell ya! My scheduled course of events was mildly shaken up, but all in all things are looking good. Within the next month or two I'll be randomly releasing a video project or two into the internets for forced consumption. On top of that I'm looking a few potential moves that could really change things up heading forward. Strange things are afoot at the circle k. Until next time… Have a Great Week!