Smile [1975]

"My face isn't able to smile," Brian Wilson confides to collaborator Van Dyke Parks in one of this comprehensive double-DVD set's poignant bonus interviews, "but my heart does." Listen to our interview with Brian Wilson Using vintage clips and the frank insights of Brian's friends and colleagues, writer/producer/director David Leaf (a longtime Wilson confidant and author of the pioneering history The Beach Boys and the California Myth) charts the music legend's spectacular rise to stardom and the troubling gestation and subsequent abandonment of the 1967 album widely anticipated as Wilson's artistic coup de grace. But it's a tale with a triumphant, if 37-year-delayed third act: Smile's unlikely '04 album resurrection and subsequent London concert premiere. The second disc chronicles yet another victorious moment, the tour's glorious homecoming show at L.A.'s Disney Hall, captured with graceful camera work, crisp editing and a 5.1 sound mix that imparts every playful musical nuance. The bonus materials (which include interviews, London clips, a rewarding sessions featurette and a trove of Wilson piano performances, some featuring musicians Carol Kaye and Darian Sahanaja) help make the set a nearly four-hour Smile-lover's dream-come-true. But it's the documentary's candor, a willingness to address Wilson's troubled psyche head-on, that imparts its unusual dramatic gravitas, making its ultimate triumphs all the richer. Wilson aficionados will find few greater joys than seeing their hero back firmly in command behind a recording console--or leading an ecstatic live ensemble through a pop masterpiece long thought lost to the ages. --Jerry McCulley Smile with the music of Brian Wilson Smile Gettin' in over My Head Orange Crate Art Pet Sounds Live I Just Wasn't Made for These Times Imagination

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