Used and Abused… In Live We Trust (Nuclear Blast)
by Mike Delano
Although the rotgut cover art makes it look like a bootleg, this is an excellent live document of In Flames during the Soundtrack to Your Escape tour. Unlike other band DVDs that revel in heaps of unnecessary backstage or interview footage, Used and Abused justifies its two discs and extended running time with some great looking, great sounding concert clips. The best is at the start: “Live at Hammersmith” is an expertly shot, crisp-sounding document of the conclusion of the Soundtrack tour cycle. The setlist contains a roaring “Fucking Hostile” cover in tribute to Dimebag, which segues perfectly into the frenzy of “Behind Space.” The band is in such fine form that it even lights a fire under forgotten tracks like “In Search for I.”
A perfect compliment to “Hammersmith” is “Live at Sticky Fingers” in which the band tears through Soundtrack in its entirety in a tight space with only a few hundred people. And while nothing seems to please the legion of fans that contend everything In Flames has done since Clayman is worthless pop, live versions of “Artifacts of the Black Rain” and the monumental “Jotun” dig deeper into their discography than the band has in the past few years.
The low point of the two DVDs is “Jester TV Universal Access,” a behind-the-scenes documentary of the tour that, through no fault of the documentarian, only manages to communicate that, offstage, In Flames doesn’t do anything interesting and is wholly uninterested in interviews, even for their own DVD.