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Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub
(Various / DVD / NR / (2019) 2020 / MVD Visual)

Overview: With iconic Austin venues closing each year due to rising rents and property taxes, the writing is on the wall for The Saxon Pub, a mainstay for live music since 1990.

Soon being forced to a new space - akin to closure for most clubs - its owner, staff, regulars, and its beloved musicians turn to face the music until they learn their fate might not be sealed after all.

DVD Verdict: As noted, 'Nothing Stays The Same' celebrates the last 30 years of live music in Austin, Texas, while also examining the challenges faced by musicians and music venues in one of the fastest-growing and most popular cities in the country, all through the lens of the legendary Saxon Pub.

Opened in 1990, the Saxon has hosted well over 22,000 musical performances and has also been the location for films, videos and countless live recordings.

On any given night you might see a major celebrity from the film or music industry either having a beer or sitting in on stage jamming with the locals.

Furthermore, this award-winning listening room has helped launch the careers of several prominent entertainers. It is also known for booking some of the greatest music legends around, performing in an intimate atmosphere that Kris Kristofferson likened to “playing in his own living room.”

As we progress though this highly informative new documentary, we quickly learn that located on South Lamar in Austin, TX, the Saxon Pub was actually going to be forced to relocate (because of rising rents and real estate deals) in 2015.

But by 2016, the plan had collapsed – but this wasn't the same old song of an Austin club on the brink of disappearing. Instead, it got an unexpected lease of life from a surprising source.

Longtime TV documentarian Jeff Sandmann's decided to film a tribute, if you will, to his beloved Pub, with its sticky floors and awesome sounds generated almost 7-days a week, and so instead of a There she goes direction, he redirected the viewers eyes and ears toward something much more optimistic.

Chock full of oh-so many talking heads and, in some cases, even recognizable faces, ok sure, his documentary does lean more toward those musicians in residence for the local bar (most of which you will not have a clue about if you live outside of Austin), but the way Sandmann (a real last name that totally rocks!) showcases those challenges that faced owner/manager Joe Ables (let alone his employees and all those musicians) truly defines not only the Saxon Pub, but this documentary as a whole.

In closing, 'Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub' is a quite wondrous look into the history of Austin music, whilst at the same time a musical treat for your ears. It also won the Best Music Documentary at SXSW in 2019. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.

'Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub' [DVD] is out July 14th, 2020 via MVD Visual.

'Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub' Trailer