Hardcore DEVO Live!

Following the February 2014 death of founding member Bob Casales, inimitable science-punk band Devo decided to exhume the unrecorded early material they played in and around Akron, Ohio, from 1974 to 1977, before the marketing tag “new wave” gave them a commercial avenue for their defiant weirdness. Directed by Keirda Bahruth, this concert documentary of the consequent tour struggles feebly to become a band biography, augmenting the players’ onstage reminiscing with comments from early Devo champions V. Vale (founder of outre publisher RE/Search) and choreo­grapher Toni Basil (patron saint of cheerleaders everywhere for her 1982 hit “Mickey”). But the movie is best enjoyed as a simple live document of a killer band, as the unknown tunes eventually give way to such early favorites as “Jocko Homo,” “Be Stiff,” and “Uncontrollable Urge.” Guitarist Bob Mothersbaugh remembers himself thinking, “I’m tired of playing ‘Whip It.’ Let’s do something else!” My sentiments exactly.