Would I go again? Never. Am I Glad I went? After a shower, I decided, yes.
They are one of the most hated, most loved and most confusing bands of all time. The Insane Clown Posse,Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope, are a hip hop duo one conundrum over a mind f*ck. On the core they’re two men who dress up as clowns and rap about murder, degrading women, anything obscene, but peel back a few layers and pull apart their lyrics and there, oddly enough, is a sense of positivity wrapped up in the world they’ve created.
After legal troubles surrounding the band finally being put to rest, the two embarked on a Canadian tour (now legally being allowed to cross boarders) with a Toronto stop. Like them or not, they are two fascinating to pass up, though many might disagree. After going to the show…well…there are five unavoidable things you’ll experience at an ICP show.
To be expected. The clown makeup isn’t just for the stage. If you don’t know ICP, well then quick lesson. With a large fanbase so dedicated to their music, an entire subculture called Juggalo’s have been created.Face paint, emo clothing and a bottle of Faygo are just a few of the identifiers some of the crowd decked themselves in.
Faygo the drink of Juggalo’s proclaimed by the band. If you set foot in one of their shows, be prepared to be COATED with this fizzy drink. If you’ve never come across the drink before, be assured by the end of the show you’ll know what it tastes like, feels like, smells like and how it messes up your hair to no end.– Gallons are shed at each show. Buckets of two-liters are kept at the band’s side, and restocked endlessly throughout the show. Don’t even think of hiding in the back, trust me, you’ll still get soaked.
3. Crowd Surfing
Entertainment is what the band thrives on. Before the band took the stage, before the bottles of Faygo were sprayed, “ICP” was chanted among the crowd. As the anticipation rose, so did the stage drivers. The lights were out and the chants rising, and the unspoken camaraderie brought person after person passed forward until ultimately kicked to the back by security.
4. All the hits in 2 mins or less
Over 27-years in the music business, millions of records sold and two gold records wracks up a lot of hits. There is a lot of material to get through with a venue cap , which might be an issue for most artists, but ICP simply powers through all their known material so cleanly it’s almost robotic. Rarely was a song played in it’s entirety, some even just the chorus. Though it’d be unfair to say it was over looked. Gimmicks, props, and even dancers were all brought on stage to make the most out of the small amount of time each hit before it melded into another.
5. A whole lot of manners
Trust me, this isn’t cheesy. I’ve been to a lot of shows. Too many to count or remember, I’ve seen fights, brawls, crying fans grasping between bodies to remove an extra inch of space between them and their artist. With clown makeup, black clothing and some questionable characters you’d expect manners to be foreign. Well, I have to say, these were some of the nicest folks I’d ever met. Clearly not wanting to be sprayed, people shielded me when they could (or my camera at least), made sure not to push me when a mosh pit broke out, while apologizing with a smile if they did.
At a certain point in the night, my shoes were covered in soda, sweat and who knows what else. Retreating to the back, I realized how easily people made a path for me in the packed room. Offering smiles and a clear way to the back as I passed.
“Do you want my seat? I’ve got a perfect view.” A women offered once I began shooting from the back, (sort of) safe from the soda spraying. I declined, her thoughtful offer. Looking around the room barley distinguishable faces were all smiling. Simply smiling as this odd sense of comfort presently roamed the room as the two clowns on stage roared on about murdering people with their best friend…an axe.
Check out more photos of the show below.