OK. Before I start this review I just wanna let y’all know that this was my first ever ICP show. Yup. First ever. They haven’t toured up here in Canada in over a decade so when I heard it was going down I jumped at the opportunity.
I honestly thought that the Sarnia show was the first show. I know they were playing the Amnesia Festival in Quebec but that’s a festival. I don’t count that. But shit, Windsor was their first official show and I could have just as easily hit that up but none the less…
I picked up my homie, Rick at around 3:30. It’s about an hour drive to Sarnia so we spent the ride listening to new ICP. He’s more of an old-school fan and doesn’t really keep up with their new music so it was kinda exciting showing him what the Wicked Clowns have been up to for the past 10 years.
We got to the venue at around 5:00 which was cool even though the doors didn’t open till 7:00 (which we later found out was 8:30) because I wanted to hang out with some of the Juggalos in the parking lot. After realizing that we were three and a half hours early we kinda just sat and smoked cigarettes for a while. It started pissing down rain and we went to A&W and grabbed a burger. I wasn’t too worried about the rain as I wasn’t wearing facepaint and I knew I was going to end up soaked by the end of the night anyway.
After the rain let up we decided to grab a place in line. We were standing there talking bullshit when some Juggalo came up behind us and put his arms around us.
“You gentlemen seem lonely standing here by yourselves. Why don’t you join me and this group of Juggalos over here” he said pointing to a group of 2 Juggalettes and a Juggalo.
His name was John and he was the shit. Epitome of a Juggalo. Turns out one of the Juggalettes was his wife (I can’t remember the name). The other Juggalo was named Joe and the other Juggalette was Joe’s wife. They were the shit.
“How long have you been down?” John asked me.
“Me?” I asked “shit, since 2000? No. I can remember rapping ‘I’ll eat Monopoly and shit out Connect Four’ in grade 5 so ’97”
After security decided to switch the entrance to the side door and then back again making everyone move back and forth they finally started letting people in.
When I got in, the first place I hit up was the merch booth. It was gonna be the washroom but I wanted to see what they had. To be honest, I thought they would have a lot more. I know I said I’ve never been to a show before so you’re probably thinking ‘what the fuck does this guy know?’ but I’ve seen all the pics online and I know what the merch booth looks like most times. I did see a copy of the Chronicles of the Dark Carnival which I scooped up after the show. I’m not sure if that’s a normal item on their tours but I don’t think it is considering the prices I see on eBay.
The opening acts were good. Although I can’t really tell ya all about them because their names escape me but I know that there was a ninja named Wycked Truth and that ninja was the shit.
A lot of hard rap. Like a lot of the local talent came hard. The crowd seemed to be getting pretty hyped. I was asking a few ninjas including John and his wife if they liked this they all seemed to love it.
A couple dozen trips to the smoking patio and back where I met a bunch of cool ninjas. I also saw my homie Matt who I haven’t seen in like 10 years (we figured that out after – we’re getting old – fuck). Some ninja there names Stutta that could just spit some machine style rap. All nonchalantly too. Like “hey you know that verse Tech N9ne does where he’s like ‘(insert fast rap here)’? Yeah. Yeah, that verse is the shit.”
One of the stage acts was a freak show/bizzare/whatever kinda dude. He was walking around in a white under shirt and black pants with suspenders with his face painted like a mime. I remember thinking “Holy shit. Is this guy serious? I guess I am at an ICP show.”
That guy was entertainment. Although the rap group that came on before him went on a little long and he lost maybe 15 minutes of his set he was still the shit. He put Faygo into a meat injector needle, stuck that shit way far down his nose and then injected the Faygo. It was coming out his nose and mouth, like damn. Then he stuck a a small board with a pin on the end down his nose and stood sideways in front of a board. Some ninja dressed as a ringmaster came out and started throwing knives at the board. The first two just bounced off the back board (like what the fuck, they were 3 feet from the crowd) the third stuck in the board about a foot away from his face and the fourth hit the board in his nose missing by maybe an inch. Holy shit. We saw that freak show dude on the patio after and were asking if that shit was real. He assured us it was. One comment he made was “ICP: giving clowns a bad rep since the 90’s” to which I replied “bringing clown awareness.” I don’t know what the fuck that means but I said it.
Now for the exciting part… ICP.
I’ll be completely honest. Just before ICP came on stage, and they were putting up the tarp to cover them setting up the stage or whatever they were doing, I wasn’t feeling it. By then it was 11:00 and I had done a lot of driving and a lot of sitting around in the parking lot smoking cigarettes and it felt like this was right around the time I would head home anywhere else.
Of course I knew I would never, EVER leave at that moment. But yeah, kinda had a half headache. Wack.
Then it happened…
The circus music hit.
The tarp dropped.
The big-ass ICP letters lit up and shined brighter than anything else in that entire fucking venue… and ICP hit the stage walkin’ in like some giant wind up toys.
The crowd popped and that was it. I was suddenly ‘into it’ again. Not just into it but they hadn’t even played one song yet and I didn’t want the shit to ever end! It was also awesome seeing them in the flesh after looking at them for 20 years through a screen or on paper.They busted out with “The Show Must Go On” and I went nuts. Screaming along (not singing) with every fuckin’ word. Gettin’ hype.
They didn’t bust out with the Faygo until the chorus hit and I remember seeing the brown liquid flying towards my face, almost in slow motion. At least that’s how I remember it. My first instinct was to duck but of course I didn’t. I raised my arms in the air and embraced that shit. Before the end of that song I was drenched from head to toe.
I loved it. So did my homie. Clowns dancing on stage throwing Faygo on everyone.
When “Chicken Huntin'” came on they were tossing chicken feathers into the crowd which works well when mixed with Faygo.
“Halls of Illusions” was hype as hell. This is, and probably always has been, my favorite ICP song, and to see them do it live… man. My homie was super hyped for that one. That and “Fuck The World” which I assured him, before hand, they would play.
Now I could sit here and try to remember the experience of every song with ya, but I’m not. Just know that for every song that came on I was as hype as I’ve ever been. My wig was blown so far back I couldn’t even catch it! I found it later in a puddle of Faygo.
At one point in the show my homie looked over and said “my shoes are filled with Faygo”. I looked down and could not even see my shoes. There was a lot of Faygo on the floor. I mean a lot.
Here is what I could remember of the set list:
The Show Must Go On
Let’s Go All The Way
Halls of Illusions
Fuck The World
Chicken Huntin’ (Slaughterhouse Mix)
Hokus Pokus (Headhunta’z Edit)
The Neden Game
Boogie Woogie Wu
Cherry Pie (i need a freak)
Pass Me By
Bang! Pow! Boom!
This is not in order but maybe somewhat? Maybe some ninja that was at the show can correct me. At the end of the set when all the ninjas came on stage for Faygo Armageddon I could already tell there was gonna be a problem.
J & Shaggy completely disappeared into the crowd of people and everyone swarmed the stage. I could still hear them singing along with “Bang! Pow! Boom!” but I couldn’t see them. Then their lyrics just stopped and they were out. The house lights came on and they immediately started telling people to leave. Once the house lights were on you could see the place looked like it had been flooded with Faygo. Like a literal flood.
“That was one of the best shows I’ve ever been to!” my homie said. It was for me too.
I hit up the merch booth and picked up my copy of Chronicles of the Dark Carnival and bounced. Fun fact: The DVD is a 2016 pressing and has the “Missing Link” style Hatchetman on it.
After I drove my homie home talking about how great the show was I drove home for a much needed shower and sleep. My pants were completely covered in Faygo and chicken feathers. Even after they were dry.
In conclusion, would I recommend hitting up an ICP show in the future? Without question.