Love Story


Phases & Stages

Love Story


"Why weren't we as big as the Beatles?" murmurs Arthur Lee, holding court, attired as if he were still in prison. "One is because I didn't cooperate," he acknowledges, wagging his head. Then up shoots his chin. "And the other is, I'm not gonna go out and eat shit ... out on the road!" The tacked-on tour reference doubles as rationalization for his outburst. That's why, Arthur. Wrapped like the bandana under Lee's top hat with a lucid, nostalgic – addictive – audience upside the black sunglasses of rock & roll's genius answer to Ledbelly, Love Story's a weeper. Filmmakers get the lifelong erratic to drive them past his high school and later tour a crew through the L.A. castle his band, Love, once called its crash pad. The band's original members comment to historical effect, especially Lee's childhood pal turned ice-pick guitarist Johnny Echols and Lee's musical foil Bryan MacLean, who all agree touched off 1967 avant-folk-rock masterpiece Forever Changes with his supremely insecure "Alone Again Or." Production, vintage video, and big-league cred celebs match the documentary's bottle-of-wine budget, though Elektra Records architects Jac Holzman (president) and John Densmore (the Doors), 40 takes of "7 and 7 Is," and "My Little Red Book" survive Lee, 61, who died in 2006 shortly after participating in Love Story. "Tell you the truth," admits Lee, "I was afraid."

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Love
Phases & Stages
Forever Changes: Collector's Edition (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, June 20, 2008

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
... And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead
X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Record Review)

Alejandra Ramirez, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Daniel Johnston
Chicago 2017 (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Feb. 21, 2020

More by Raoul Hernandez
Review: Haunter’s <i>Discarnate Ails</i>
Review: Haunter’s Discarnate Ails
A three-song behemoth from Central Texas death metal unit debut on Profound Lore

May 20, 2022

William Basinski Proves a Rock Star of Experimental Sound
William Basinski Proves a Rock Star of Experimental Sound
Texan auditory stud beguiles Elysium prior to lunar eclipse

May 16, 2022



One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle