Eye on the Scene

Rebel Scum Nears Completion, Set for Submission to Festivals

It's been at least a couple of years since the folks at Atlanta's Worldstorm (Arts Lab) began filming Rebel Scum, a rockumentary that chronicles the life of one Christopher Scum (née Chris Andrews ) and his musical partners in crime, the Dirty Works. But despite rumors to the contrary, production of the film is within weeks of completion and will soon be submitted to several major film festivals.

When I viewed the film at Worldstorm's studio/headquarters, producer Francis Percarpio and director Video Rahim continually pointed out unfinished details. But to my untrained eyes, the film is complete; and it's astoundingly well-executed, thank you.

On par with the work of Ondi Timoner ( Dig! ) and Julien Temple ( The Filth and The Fury , Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten ), Rebel Scum is more than just a rock'n'roll movie. The multi-textured film explores several themes, including mental illness, addiction, relationships, family dysfunction, and the struggle for artistic expression. And, of course, all of this is repeatedly punctuated by scenes of Scum & co. in all their wasted glory, striving to make it in the rock'n'roll underground while facing the obstacles of legality, power struggles, and an oftentimes disinterested public.

Several of Knoxville's underground celebrities make appearances in the film including the legendary demon/poet/provocateur Rus Harper , the always entertaining and enigmatic Carl Snow , and the late Vadim , of dark metal fame. Other southeastern bands make appearances such as Atlanta's Dropsonic , Asheville's Monsters of Japan , and you can even spot members of The Disobedients if you keep your eyes peeled. Knoxville clubs The Pilot Light and The Corner Lounge provide the settings for several scenes.

Simply put, Rebel Scum is a masterpiece, a miracle. No matter what you think of Christopher Scum or his band, you will find this film absolutely compelling. The basic story of the film is one man's continued drive to create art in spite of barriers imposed by society and by his own self-destructive tendencies. Rebel Scum bounces intermittently between the extremes of comedy and tragedy, revealing a seedy underworld of Knoxville that few people know exists or would want to know about. At its core, the film presents an honest depiction that is neither exploitative nor a PR hackjob. And anybody with a beating heart will end up loving Christopher Scum, despite his myriad flaws. Trust me; the disturbing and painfully real Rebel Scum is destined to become a classic of the documentary genre. This is gonna be huge.

Rebel Scum is slated for submission to several major film festivals this fall, including Sundance and the Berlin Film Festival. â" John Sewell

Not just for haircuts anymore

It's hard to believe that LOX, that hip little hair salon in the Old City, is already celebrating its one-year anniversary. But Saturday, Sept. 1 will see the LOX folks throw a salon-wide birthday bash that will includeâ"in addition to $10 haircuts between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.â"a free local music show, plus food and drink. Bands on the bill include Distant Relatives , Gutlocker , The Dirty Knees , and Bright Shuttle . Music starts at 7 p.m., so remember to come way-early if you want your LOX shorn before the evening's big show. ( M.G. )

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