What do Nirvana's "Nevermind," Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours," Neil Young's "After the Gold Rush," Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' "Damn the Torpedoes" and "Rage Against the Machine" have in common? (Besides all being great artistic and commercial triumphs, of course).

All five of those albums, as well as so many other wonderful platters, were crafted at Los Angeles' truly legendary Sound City recording studios.

The studio is the subject of a new documentary film, "Sound City," which hits local theaters for a limited engagement this week. The film was directed by none other than Dave Grohl, who was a member of Nirvana when the band recorded its genre-defining "Nevermind" at Sound City in 1991.

I expect this will be a very interesting film. Sound City has quite the colorful history, ranging from the famous to the infamous. Not only was it the birthplace of such true rock 'n' roll classics as "Rumours" and "After the Gold Rush," but it also once served as the site for some recording sessions by cult leader Charles Manson.

"Sound City" screens at 7 p.m. Jan. 31at Berkeley's Shattuck Cinemas (www.landmarktheatres.com) and Jan. 31 through Feb. 4at San Francisco's Roxie Theater (www.roxie.com).


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