Promote your event / Contact MCB

email us anytime


THOR- Documentary Film Screening and Live Performance Show Review (with Interview and Live Footage)

I didn't know much about Thor as a band apart from the wild antics of their front man and knew even less about the music that they had released or performed. That is until viewing the recently released documentary "I Am Thor".

The band Thor can be entertaining for both the music and also for the kitsch factor of the group. Thor first caught my attention years ago after hearing tales of a wild front man complete with muscles as well as over the top outfits, swords, and tales of blowing up hot water bottles till they burst and bending steel on stage. I was simply entertained by the sheer absurdity of the band and what it represented. I enjoy larger than life stage presence and uniqueness from the acts I see live and Thor sounded right up my alley.
The documentary "I Am Thor" follows Thor frontman John Mikl Thor from his first wave of rock star fame in the 70's and 80's, to the breakup of the band, and then his comeback in 1997 till the present. I'm always game for a good documentary film about a musician and thisone did not let me down. John Mikl Thor has lived a far more entertaining life than most people could ever dream of. From being a highly successful bodybuilder who has won over 40 titles around the world including Mr. USA and Mr. Canada titles, to being a certified rock musician as well as a writer and actor in films. Jon was even asked to join The Misfits after the departure of Glen Danzig, but was too busy with his own band to accept. This is just another interesting chapter in the life of Jon Mikl Thor. These achievements as well as the disappointments are chronicled in "I Am Thor". You really get to into the mind set of Jon as he takes you into the darkest parts of his life including a suicide attempt, a nervous breakdown, and a stroke. Along with the dark you get the light as you see Jon and Thor forge a comeback that includes the band heading overseas to play some well received shows.  

Just as entertaining as Jon is in the film, you also have his fellow bandmates including his ex-wife opening up  and sharing their experiences to camera. Thor drummer Mike Favata and guitarist Steve Price are some of my favorites in the film. They come off as truly genuine guys and have honest and entertaining tales to tell in the film. Highlights include Steve Price saying "They like me better than I like me" in regards to Thor fans and a scene with Mike Favata talking to attendees at a Sweden festival will have you laughing out loud. Both Steve and Mike were in the lineup in the 80's and have made their return to the fold once again during the comeback years. A long and interesting history wrapped up in 90 minutes is no easy task, but director Ryan Wise has done a fine job with the film. Archival footage along with plenty of interviews and new live footage helps tell the tale and keeps it entertaining.

I finally caught up with Thor recently as the band was on tour in anticipation of the release of the "I Am Thor" documentary. They brought along the film to screen before their live performance at Small's Bar in Hamtramck and I was there to catch the action.

Attendees to the show were pleased when they discovered a free promotional "I Am Thor" hammer waiting for them as they took a seat before the screening of the documentary. I met with the band backstage for a pre-show interview and was told to help myself to the beer and pizza in the room. The band was preparing to do a introduction and Q&A with the audience before the film. 

I had already seen the film and as I was eating and drinking what was offered to me, I took note at how genuine the guys were. These guys I had only seen on film were right in front of me showing the same personality traits that the film captured. The band was excited to talk about the film during the introduction and Q&A with the audience and they discussed their history with Detroit which included the 1985 Thor album "Live In Detroit".

After the film introduction and Q&A were concluded I sat down with the band Thor (Jon Mikl Thor, Mike Favata, Steve Price, and Ben Perman) to discuss the film, wild stage moments, collaborations, punk rock and heavy metal, the movie Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare, and more. Here is the result... 

The interview could of ran well into the night, but the band had to prepare to take the stage for a live performance. Steve and Mike came into the venue to view what was left of the movie and I just happened to be there next to them during my favorite part of the film. Watching Mike Favata watching himself in Sweden is something I will never forget.
Thor took to the stage shortly after the film was finished and was met with a enthusiastic crowd. Many of those in attendance were not even born when Thor was at the height of his success in the 80's. But good music has that effect of never fading away and living on for future generations. Fans were packed close to the stage singing along to Thor classics such as "Thunder On The Tundra", "Anger", and "Rock The City". 

Jon would often extend the microphone stand to the audience so they could share in the vocal duties. The band even took requests and fulfilled them as with the case of "Keep the Dogs Away".

Jon has taken the feats of strength out of many of his live performances these days and most of the theatrics now involve costumes and masks, but Thor's live performance holds it's own. There's no denying that the songs are catchy and the performance was solid. The band was having a blast of stage and the audience was right along with them for the ride. The Thor hammers were waving proud in the air.

After the set the entire band stuck around the merch booth to meet with fans (be sure to view the footage after the live performance footage above). The Q&A may have taken place before the film, but after viewing it as well as the performance, the fans now had a real one on one opportunity to talk to them. Fans brought out their Thor collections to get signed including original vintage vinyl pressings dating back to the 70's. The band was happy to pose for photos and sign anything put in front of them. Jon was very appreciative of me coming out to do what I do and even told me to take what I wanted off the merch table. You could not have asked for a better bunch of guys to hang with that night. 

Do yourself a favor a check out the "I Am Thor" documentary which is on video on demand at this very moment. It's a tale that keeps being told as Thor continues to release new music and tour. The band Thor delivers a live performance that shouldn't be missed and let's face it- rock warriors don't come to town as much as they use to.