Friday, November 16, 2018

The Mentors: Kings of Sleaze (2018, April Jones)


As a long time lover of Punk Rock,The Mentors were one of those bands I was always a little too scared of to get into.  As mentioned in this film as a common misconception, I always assumed the hoods the band members wore were Ku Klux Klan hoods, not Executioner hoods.  I was familiar with the name "El Duce" and knew the band had shocking song titles ("Wine You, Dine You, Sixty Nine You", and "Service Me or Be Smacked" are two of my favorites), but other than that I knew very little.  Luckily, April Jones' new ROCKumentary, The Mentors: Kings of Sleaze, has filled in that gap in my musical knowledge.

This film focuses heavily on Eldon "El Duce" Hoke, lead singer and drummer of The Mentors, whose hilarious antics and songs became the stuff of legends.  Along with founding guitarist Sickie Wifebeater (Eric Carlson) and bass player Dr. Heathen Scum (Steve Broy), The Mentors blazed a trail of debauchery in a genre they created called "Rape Rock".  Basically this term describes the band's mix of punk rock and heavy metal with hilariously, politically incorrect song titles and lyrics.  We learn about the band's formation, many lineup changes, downfalls, the death of El Duce and the resurrection of the band.  Along the way we also hear from the many old and new band members of The Mentors as well as members of other legendary bands, such as Raven, St. Vitus, The Dwarves, Gwar, Fang, Exodus.

The Mentors: Kings of Sleaze proves itself to be a successful documentary because it not only entertains you, but also teaches you the history of a crucial, underground band.  The film could also be somewhat of a cautionary tale of the dangers of alcohol, but it is more of a celebration of the life of an important figure whose music and memories will live on forever.  The fact that The Mentors are still active (with Sickie and Heathen in tow), is a testament to the band's legendary status.

Kings of Sleaze is available to stream or purchase (either on demand or DVD), as well as other merchandise HERE

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