Creem: America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine

Creem: America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine

Music Film

Creem: America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine

Directed by: Scott Crawford

USA, 2019, 75m

On the shortlist of influential rock and roll periodicals, Creem sits near the top. While Rolling Stone tried to make rock journalism a legit art form, Creem just wanted to get high and drunk and maybe get laid too. It wasn’t porn, but if your parents found it in your bedroom, they weren’t going to be happy. This sex-drugs-and-anarchy monthly was birthed in 1969 Detroit, amid the same urban decay that launched the Stooges, MC5, and Alice Cooper. Transgressive to the core, Creem was gleefully stoopid and happily wallowed in the grimy world of working-class rock.  Gonzo writers, like the legendary Lester Bangs, defined the vision—embracing hard rock, punk, and metal like a moody 14-year-old with a perma-boner. Creem was anti-everything and aligned nicely with sweaty young rock fans all over the U.S. Creem’s entire history (which ran through the late 1980s) is captured in this goofy, fun doc, featuring interviews with a rouge’s gallery of bad influences, a lively collection of ancient office videos, and bizarro animations. Sadly, the carefree days of stoner bliss that fostered Creem are long gone, so enjoy this before it gets banned by The Man. Tell ‘em “Boy Howdy!” sent you.

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