Return to Bangleonia
First Appeared in The Music Box, February 2008, Volume 15, #2
Written by Kirk deCordova
Mon February 4, 2008, 07:15 AM CST
The Bangles, once the female power-pop darlings of the í80s music scene, is back with a new DVD. Entitled Return to Bangleonia, the collection captures the outfit during its 2000 reunion tour at the House of Blues in Los Angeles. Although the girls hadnít recorded together for a decade, the spirit of the band still was able to shine brightly throughout the show. The athletic interactions between Susanna Hoffs (rhythm guitar) and Vicki Peterson (lead guitar) were nothing short of remarkable, while Debbi Peterson (drums) and Michael Steele (bass) kept the rhythm on an even keel. Yet, the stage antics did not serve as the concertís highlights; instead, the music took center stage as the Bangles demonstrated that its best years might not necessarily have been in the past. Still attractive and clearly having fun, the Bangles churned out a performance that spotlighted its endearing, though imperfect musical skills, while also pleasing the lively fans at the House of Blues.
All of the Banglesí famed hits are included on Return to Bangleonia, including the Prince-penned smash Manic Monday and the former MTV staple Walk Like an Egyptian. The Banglesí í60s inspired tune In My Room was a crowd favorite as was the show-opening rendition of Simon and Garfunkelís Hazy Shade of Winter. Material from the bandís 2003 endeavor Doll Revolution, which had not been issued at the time of the show, also was mixed into the groupís set list. These cuts included Here Right Now and Stealing Rosemary. The concert concluded with Eternal Flame, the Banglesí syrupy, internationally successful ballad from 1989. In the end, the show proved to be a proper balance of songs both old and new.
Return to Bangleonia contains a few bonus features, including a concert commentary by the Bangles as well as acoustic performances of Manic Monday and Ride the Ride, both of which stand in contrast to the renditions that the group delivered during its electric show. Finally, rare band photos and a lackluster interview with the Bangles sans Steele cap off the DVDís extra materials.
In the end, Return to Bangleonia captures a moment in time that reveals a once-famous ensemble as it attempts to stage a comeback. With Steeleís departure in 2005, this concert gives fans one last look at the Banglesí famous í80s line-up. Consequently, Return to Bangleonia is a DVD that most Bangles fans should see and perhaps even purchase. Ĺ
Return to Bangleonia is available from Barnes & Noble.
To order, Click Here!
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2008 The Music Box