Thursday, September 4, 2003

Wolfpac outshines other rap acts


Concert review

By Chris Varias
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Society 1 could be glorified as the only act to play its own instruments during the five-band bill at Bogart's Wednesday night. Or Society 1 could be ridiculed as proof that a band using traditional rock instrumentation can be as dull to watch and to hear as a rap group who spits rhymes to the sound of recorded music.

Society 1 opened the package tour, and the Insane Clown Posse-protege rap-duo Twiztid had top billing. And we will mention Society 1 no more, since the trio's rudimentary thrash-metal sound did nothing but solicit chants of the headliner's name from the half-full room.

The crowd was not there for guitars and drums. The crowd apparently wanted a faithful reproduction of a Twiztid recording. This meant principals Monoxide Child and Jamie Madrox rapping over a tape of Twiztid music.

Why wouldn't young Twiztid fans save themselves 17 bucks by staying home and listening to a CD or tape of the same music? There are two reasons.

There's a shared celebration of Twiztid's horror-movie-as-rap-music style. Youngsters could compare each other's ICP-style face make-up, while flashing fake gang signs and shouting fake gang slogans at each other.

And, probably of greater significance, their moms wouldn't let them blast their bedroom stereos anywhere near as loudly as the Bogart's PA.

Anybody Killa, another rap act in the ICP family, did his thing to the sound of taped music, as well. ABK, as he is also known, is a solo act. He held the crowd's attention all by himself - unlike Twiztid, who employed a pair of axe-wielding dancing clowns for dramatic support.

However, ABK wasn't above using a weapon prop. He brandished a pistol during "Gang Related" and pointed it to his head at the end of the song and the set as the house lights went dark.

The R.O.C. was another solo rapper who had taped backup, and his set was as derivative as ABK's.

Wolfpac was the highlight. The band mixed rap style with rock spontaneity, using four MCs, a DJ and a guitar player.

One of the MCs was Daddy Long Legs, an early member of the Bloodhound Gang. And Wolfpac shares that Bloodhound Gang desire to find a tone in lyrical content where silly and offensive intersect.

E-mail cvarias@enquirer.com




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