“Lessons Not Well Learned” by Armored Saint

Artist: Armored Saint
Title: “Lessons Not Well Learned 1991-2001”
Label: Metal Blade Records
Release Date: 5/4/2004
Genre: Heavy Metal
Rating: 6.5/10

Armored Saint decided to approach their 2nd DVD of rare and archival footage in a unique way. With “Armored Saint Magazine: Lessons Not Well Learned” the fan gets a great compilation of footage that has most likely never been seen before. It is positioned as a video magazine where Editor (and drummer) Gonzo or “Gahnzo” during the film does some humorous intro dialogue segments. It is done very tongue in cheek and you can tell that the band had fun making this. Another interesting aspect of the DVD is that all the footage seems to be audience shot, or done by the sound man from his mixing board. Pretty much simple one camera shoots from a specific angle all featuring Armored Saint appearances across a number of years (1991-2001). Sometimes footage like this suffers in either sound or visual quality and I have to give them credit that this does not fail on those counts all that much. The visual is pretty good considering it is amateur level and the sound is clear for the most part. You will notice clarity differences in the older portions against the newer ones without question. The group of concert shots are surrounded with some band goofing around antics or messing with the audience. There is also a fair amount of bonus material. The Armored Saint line up for the DVD stars John Bush (vocals), Jeff Duncan (guitar), Phil Sandoval (guitar), Joey Vera (bass) and Gonzo Sandoval (drums). At the time of this release Bush has remained a member of Anthrax.

Bonus features are outtakes, and a couple of their production videos; “Reign Of Fire”, “Last Train Home” and “Symbol Of Salvation”. There are also some image galleries but not much else. Saint includes a worthy piece in the inclusion of a live appearance from 1984. This was around the time that I listened to them in the capacity that I did so I found it enjoyable. Given that these 7 tunes are from very early in the band’s career I know that the old school fans will eat this up. Armored Saint always worked hard for their following and developed quite a core group that has lasted for decades. I feel that more bands should make this type of archival footage available to fans if they have it. This is not a DVD for the casual fan and can’t be recommended for everyone but instead perfect for the Saint archivist who has everything and might even own some of these clips on old VHS tape. It’s time to update the collections and toss those bootlegs for the real thing.

Song Listing DVD:
1. Pay Dirt (2001)
2. Warzone (1991)
3. The Truth Always Hurts (1991)
4. After Me, The Flood (2000)
5. Take A Turn (1991)
6. Symbol Of Salvation (2000)
7. Tainted Past (1991)
8. Creepy Feelings (2000)
9. Another Day (1991)
10. For The Sake Of Heaviness (1991)
11. Tension (2001)
12. Tribal Dance (2001)

Track Listing CD:
1. Envy
2. Glory Hunter
3. False Alarm
4. Can U Deliver
5. Lesson Well Learned
6. Madhouse

Official Web site: www.ArmoredSaint.com

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