Dance Craze (DVD + Blu-ray)
About this deal
Newly remastered in 4K from original film materials, DANCE CRAZE is presented here by the BFI and Chrysalis Records on Blu-ray and DVD (Dual Format Edition) for the first time, more than 40 years on from its theatrical release. But seeing the potential for the whole 2 Tone movement rather than just the one band, he decided to cover the whole scene. So live footage was shot in 1980 featuring Madness, The Specials, The Selecter, The Bodysnatchers, the Beat and Bad Manners. Original stereo and surround sound mixes by Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley remastered for this release, plus a new Dolby Atmos surround sound mix approved by Jerry Dammers
The layers of archival treats on this DVD/Blu-ray release include a BBC Arenathat sent NME "cub reporter" Adrian Thrills to the chaotic offices of the record label in Coventry, where Jerry Dammers, the founder of The Specials, and the rest of the band were in fine form.Espousing the message of racial unity, the sharp suited band combined choppy Jamaican rhythms with the rawness and high-voltage energy of punk. With help from Chrysalis, they set up 2 Tone Records and just as, say, Glasgow’s Postcard label would worship at the altar of The Velvet Underground, the Coventry imprint adopted Jamaica’s Prince Buster as their patron saint. It’s 1980 and the policies implemented by Margaret Thatcher, elected British Prime Minister a year earlier, are already making an impact. That spring, riots broke out in the St Pauls district of Bristol. Inflation rose to over 20%. Unemployment stood at around 1.5 million and by the end of that summer it had risen to 2 million, with young people hit particularly hard. An inquest into the death of Blair Peach, killed as he took part in an anti-National Front protest, returned a much disputed verdict of misadventure, and the man dubbed the Yorkshire Ripper was engaged in a grotesque murdering spree. I could go on but you get the picture. Highlights include The Specials’ Concrete Jungle, a slice of terrace chant ska with social realist lyrics about streets that are no longer safe and only walking at night where there’s lots of lights.
The DANCE CRAZE film, shot throughout 1980 and released in cinemas in 1981, brilliantly captures the cultural phenomenon that was the 2Tone movement and represents an important social document of the times. Directed by Joe Massot ( The Song Remains the Same) and filmed by Bafta award-winning cinematographer Joe Dunton, it showcases the very best of the British Ska phenomenon, with exclusive live performances from The Specials, Madness, The Selecter, The Beat, Bad Manners and The Bodysnatchers. Because 2 Tone was massive. For a short period of time at the turn of the 1980s, it seemed like the biggest thing on the planet. Or at least, on the schoolyard. While the gigs might have been lively, for many kids, they weren’t exactly on the doorstep, and Dance Craze was the ideal substitute.Dance Craze Update** Due to big demand, we've increased the initial run of this release to 7,000 units. This will all come with a booklet and slipcase and it seriously isn't going to last very long. Later pressings will include a booklet but only the first run will have a slipcase.
DANCE CRAZE premieres at the Glasgow Film Festival on Thursday 9 March and will be screened at BFI IMAX, the biggest screen in Britain – 65 foot high with a 12-channel sound system – on Wednesday 22 March. The already sold out BFI IMAX screening will be introduced by members of the bands featured. 30 x Picturehouse cinemas are holding a special one-off screening on 23 March. ABOUT USLouder Than War is a music, culture and media publication headed by The Membranes & Goldblade frontman John Robb. Online since 2010 it is one of the fastest-growing and most respected music-related publications on the net. Shot in 1980 by Joe Massot, who directed the psychedelic and absurdist Wonderwall in 1968, Dance Craze is a concert footage film rather than a documentary although, around the halfway mark, it’s broken up with some old Pathé news reports on dance crazes such as the Locomotion and the Madison, and a man from Harrogate attempting a world record for playing the piano longer than anybody before had managed (a marathon endeavour aided by ‘eggs, glucose, tea and brandy’ together with a hundred cigarettes a day. Don’t try this at home, folks).Brilliantly capturing the vibrancy of the genre, Dance Craze offers a vivid, immersive snapshot of the 2 Tone era, through kinetic concert performances by The Specials, Madness, The Selecter, The Beat, Bad Manners and The Body Snatchers. Dance Craze is a 1981 concert film recorded at various venues throughout 1980 at the height of the 2Tone movement. It features exclusive live recordings by The Specials, Madness, The Selecter, The Beat, Bad Manners and The Bodysnatchers. Director Joe Massot, an American living in the UK, had part-directed a Led Zeppelin concert film and had worked with George Harrison, but it was his son’s passion for the 2-Tone bands that led him to film the series of concerts.