photo & text by nacrowe
one of the most affecting documentaries i have experienced in recent years, ALL I CAN SAY (OSCILLOSCOPE LABORATORIES, 2019) was directed and edited by DANNY CLINCH, TARYN GOULD and COLLEEN HENNESSY and is essentially a film edited from the personal archive of camcorder video footage BLIND MELON frontman SHANNON HOON shot in the final 5 years of his life. this period included his time pre-fame in INDIANA, before he moved to LOS ANGELES and eventually formed the beloved ALTERNATIVE ROCK band. the film is effectively shot and narrated by HOON which provides a singular experience.
and what makes this film so impactful specifically is its INTIMACY. quite definitively you are witnessing HOON's point-of-view in real-time. it is a uniquely voyeuristic situation that he devised as a means of documenting his own experiences for later PERSONAL CONSUMPTION. what you are witnessing is essentially HOON's VIDEO DIARY. its an entirely singular experience gifted to us by a major recording artist. what comes across is his deep affection for his parents, his girlfriend, his young daughter, his band and his fans. not surprisingly he was a charismatic person and a talented songwriter, which only compounds the tragedy of his passing.
you also get a firsthand look at fame and how it inevitably affects ones sense of self-perception. the video which garnered him specifically so much fame and respect, "NO RAIN" off of BLIND MELON (CAPITOL, 1992), also effectively limited his public persona. for a talent who was such a free-spirit, this felt trying as many of the interview footage attests. its a similar trajectory to that of NIRVANA and "SMELLS LIKE TEEN SPIRIT." in the film HOON makes known how much KURT COBAIN's death impacted him, even making its way into lyrics for the title song "SOUP" off of their second record SOUP (CAPITOL, 1995). the fact that his passing similarly left the world another baby girl derived of a father just makes his death seemingly unbearable. and preventable.
this is an incredible film that only further enhances the legacy of HOON. if anything this film is very much a masterstroke in editing. one that i will definitely revisit in the future.