Creative Loafing Tampa Bay has releases a review of the Insane Clown Posse’s The Great Milenko 20th Anniversary Tour show that took place on October 17 at the State Theatre in St. Petersburg, Florida.
The review is well written and positive as far as I can tell. The opening acts are all mentioned and there’s a a great write up on R.A. the Rugged Man’s set. ICP also got a positive write up for their Great Milenko set. Of course the mixture of music, strobe lights and Faygo definitely made this the “most joyously disorienting live shows” this reviewer had ever had.
You can check out at CLTampa.com by CLICKING HERE or check that out below.
Review: Insane Clown Posse, juggalos use strobes and Faygo to pull off joyously disorienting set for State Theatre in St. Pete
Throughout the course of its career, Insane Clown Posse has been considered many things, almost none of them good. The group has been called one of the most hated bands of the last 30 yearsand a “magnet for ignorance.”
And as of 2011, its notorious fan base, the Juggalos, has been classified by the FBI as a gang threat, a distinction protested by 1,500 Juggalos during a March on Washington in September, outnumbering a pro-Trump rally on the same day.
Yet as the recent march demonstrated, the Detroit horrorcore rap group continues to embolden people who feel like they’re outsiders. The group’s October 17 show at State Theatre in St. Pete, part of its The Great Milenko 20th Anniversary Tour, noticeably overlooked politics. But what remained was a freakish, demented and often very touching sense of community.
The Juggalos certainly came out for this show, some from as far as Daytona Beach. You could see it all: pocket vapes, the signature black-and-white clown makeup, neon-colored hair, ripped knee-length jorts for the guys, booty jorts for the girls, a Lucha mask, a bloody Jason Voorhees mask, any of a number of ICP shirts that are so beautiful and disturbing they blur the line between attraction and revulsion.
This show began with a string of rappers including Matt Mobley, Spilla, Detroit’s Ouija and Flint, Michigan’s Lyte, all of whom were clearly influenced by Insane Clown Posse. After all, when one attends an ICP show, one expects nothing less than the most violent, depraved lyrical content replete with swearing and punctuated by whoop-whoops — the birdcall of the Juggalo.
Besides, no one tells you how liberating it feels to let loose a whoop-whoop unironically.
Ouija approached horrorcore from a more modern, trappy angle with slickly produced vocals and heavy bass. Lyte, on the other hand, most recently featured on ICP’s version of Lil Wayne’s “6 Foot 7 Foot,” set out to prove he could spit bars like Yelawolf.
During Lyte’s set, a relatively empty mosh pit formed in the center of the floor, which is almost always a recipe for disaster. Young men in black t-shirts that read “Fucked by Satan” or “If you can’t take a hit, stay off the grass” rammed into each other and shoved each other back and forth.
At one point, a fight broke out among a few of the guys. Two of them ran straight through the pit towards stage left and smashed right into the crowd. Perhaps someone got pushed a little too hard and took it personally, but two, then three, then four guys threw punches. Ten minutes later, at least one person was escorted away from the show by security.
For a while after, it seemed like the crowd was a little afraid to get boisterous. R.A.the Rugged Mancame on next though, and during his set the crowd seemed too captivated to care. People either seem to have no idea who R.A. the Rugged Man is, or they emphatically know him and view him as a legend. Anyone who watched his set that night now likely falls into the latter category.
The New York MC began with a couple more recent tracks like “Definition of a Rap Flow” before asking the audience whether they wanted to hear some stuff from the 2000s.
“Or do you wanna hear some shit from the 90s?” he asked.
The crowd responded with an uproar of nostalgic cheers and whoops. He started in with “Every Record Label Sucks Dick” and “Cunt Renaissance,” a song he’d recorded with The Notorious B.I.G. the year “Born to Die” dropped.
At one point, he pulled out nunchucks and started whipping them around onstage. A few songs later, he disappeared from the stage only to walk through the crowd, fans vibing with the music and patting him on the back. Toward the end of his set, as he returned to newer stuff like “Holla-Loo-Yuh” and “Still Get Through the Day,” he took another stroll.
During these shenanigans, he never once slipped up on lyrics or flow, which was impressive considering how fast he raps. As he rhymed at hyper-speed, his head ricocheted from side to side like a caffeinated bobblehead in an earthquake. It was truly a sight and sound to behold.
Insane Clown Posse took a while to set up with the stage concealed behind a huge black tarp. Once the group’s set began, a giant clown emblem hung as a centerpiece bookended by two tables. Between the two tables, there must have been at least three dozen two-liter bottles of Faygo.
Anyone who is prone to seizures should not attend an Insane Clown Posse show. The strobe lighting was overstimulating, bordering on the point of nausea. At least every other minute, members Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope uncorked a bottle of Faygo and sprayed the crowd. Or they just threw the entire bottle and completely soaked a couple people in particular.
These two key ingredients (strobe lighting and Faygo) helped create one of the most joyously disorienting live shows I’ve ever experienced. I had no idea being doused in soda could be so fun, albeit disgusting.
The Juggalos couldn’t contain themselves any longer. As the group played the entirety of The Great Milenko, concertgoers moshed and surfed the crowd like the soda had soaked right into their veins and given them the ultimate sugar rush. In between songs, they whooped and shouted “Family, family!” to celebrate their Juggalo family bond.
All the while, fans chanted the lyrics with the intensity of cult followers, particularly for “How Many Times?” and “What is a Juggalo?”
“Anybody want to hear a scary story?” Violent J asked the crowd, who whooped back in return.
As the group performed “Boogie Woogie Wu,” someone wearing a demonic skull mask with sprightly, pointed ears appeared onstage, looking truly haunted like the sum of all childhood fears. Another creature in a ghoulish mask came out, and whenever crowd surfers made it on to the stage, one of these two goons would throw them back out again.
For the last couple songs, the group invited concertgoers onstage. By the very end of the show, the platform teemed with Juggalos chanting “Holy shit! Holy shit!”
It was easy to see why. Everyone was soaked, and the floor was sopping with spilled beer, sweat and gallons of Faygo. It looked like a hurricane had passed through a trailer park and touched down inside a single room. The place was filthy, but I’m guessing the Juggalos wouldn’t have had it any other way.
Because inside this interior disaster zone, they were all amongst family. And even though family fights sometimes, one could see how, in this room, one of the most reviled musical groups in history could also have such a lasting legacy.
Creating a community thicker than blood and a space where outsiders don’t have to feel like freaks, unless they want to, has always been one of the principal functions of art. And in that, Insane Clown Posse has been one of the most successful musical groups of its time.