17 Dec ESSENTIAL FOOTAGE OF THE 1968 DOORS
The Boston Globe (Boston, MA)
December 17, 1988
by Steve Morse, Globe Staff
Back in 1967, I caught the Doors in a short-lived Brighton rock club called the Crosstown Bus. I remember the walls were covered with aluminum foil to better reflect the psychedelic lights, while a couple of women danced in go-go cages at the side of the stage. It was a strange scene, made all the stranger by Doors singer Jim Morrison, who groveled, murmured alien noises and sang like a man who had one foot planted squarely in the Twilight Zone.
Tonight there’s a rare opportunity to see the Doors from that era. The Cinemax station goes back to 1968 to retrieve previously unreleased footage of “The Doors in Europe,” following Morrison through some maniacal episodes in London and on the continent. The 60-minute special, taped in black and white, airs at the appropriate late-night hour of 11:30 p.m.
Morrison adds yet another notch to his kamikaze image. Narrators Grace Slick and Paul Kantner, whose group Jefferson Airplane toured Europe with the Doors, recall Morrison’s prodigious drug intake in Amsterdam (“he took everything he was offered on the spot,” says Grace) and how he passed out and was unable to go on that night with the Doors. There is remarkable footage of a prone Morrison out cold on the stage, after which the Doors’ organist Ray Manzarek steps in and sings lead vocals to salvage the set.
This is raw, primal rock footage — much more primitive than the Doors’ well-known “Live at the Hollywood Bowl” video, and light-years from the commercial gloss of MTV. For a Doors fan, of course, it will be essential viewing.