Line Out Music & the City at Night

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Worst Music I've Ever Heard

Posted by on Wed, Dec 19, 2012 at 12:59 PM

Up until last week, if you’d asked me what the worst live performance I’d ever seen was, I’d probably mention Crisco Kids. It was spring of ’97, my band was playing a gazebo in a city park in Little Rock and they were on the bill. Actually, saying they were “on the bill” is a bit of a stretch. The gazebo was basically fair game to city punks. You just showed up and played whenever you felt like it. There was no promoter, no rules. Crisco Kids were three brothers with devil-locks and Misfits face paint. The youngest brother was the guitarist and vocalist. I’d put his age at around ten. The eldest brother was the drummer. I’d wager he was old enough to drive. Their sound was like The Shaggs fronted by a prepubescent Chris Barnes from Cannibal Corpse. I watched the whole set, minus the occasional moment where I had to excuse myself to laugh hysterically behind a tree.

There are some other close contenders: that band of Jack White-imposters we played with in Poland that sounded like Joy Division with all their fingers broken, that grunge cover band in Italy that obviously didn’t know a lick of English and approximated the words to hits by Smashing Pumpkins and Nirvana, that weird pagan-goth band with the drummer in the Hawaiian shirt and the electronic drumkit I saw in Puyallup back in high school. But the one consistent factor with all these bands is that they were hard to not watch. Mediocre bands aren’t memorable or interesting. But truly awful artists are still inadvertently entertaining. Just look at brokenCYDE, Design The Skyline, or Rebecca Black. On Thurday, however, I was exposed to a whole new brand of awful, one without any redeeming qualities...

I didn’t know much about MellowHype other than that they were affiliated with the Odd Future crew. Their performance at Chop Suey consisted of two MCs and a laptop. I’ve already ranted against acts that just hit play, but MellowHype revealed a new pitfall of this half-assed musical trend. Specifically, a trainwreck performance with backing tracks isn’t nearly as entertaining as a trainwreck performance by a live band. The sequencing had more-than-adequate amount of thumping bass, crisp treble, and warm mids. The computer was obviously on-point. But the MCs seemed too stoned to keep up with the tempo. They mumbled their way through the songs, rarely locking into the groove and obviously not knowing the first thing about holding a microphone in a manner that allowed their words to be articulate instead of just a muffled mess. There was zero flow to their rhymes. And even their tracks seemed to start and end abruptly. At multiple points during their set I thought their laptop crashed, though I think they were just hitting ‘stop’ before the tracks actually ended. They would start a song, have a change of heart, then start another song. They obviously didn’t have a set list, as one MC routinely asked his partner what they should play next. At one point, they even proclaimed “setlists are for faggots.” I can’t really argue with that; I like bands to actually be prepared AND I like sucking cock. The awkward gaps where one-half of MellowHype scrolled through his song library provided plenty of opportunities for the other half to talk about how much they love weed. Bold move, dude. Do you love beer too? What are your thoughts on pizza? Then they’d launch into another song and mumble their way through two or three minutes of it until one of them walked over and hit stop.

Crisco Kids couldn’t play their instruments. As a result, it was funny. Charming, even. They definitely sounded worse than MellowHype, but they at least brought me some joy. MellowHype’s laptop sounded great, minus the awkward stops and starts. But the amount of attitude and ego coming from the two completely unprepared and untalented MCs was nothing but aggravating. There are no redeeming qualities to a bad show of pre-recorded music. The backing tracks will always be boringly consistent, and the artists merely muck up the music.


Comments (17) RSS

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Larry Mizell, Jr. 17
@16 I think Tyler, Earl, Syd and Frank will be aiite.
Posted by Larry Mizell, Jr. on December 21, 2012 at 2:06 PM · Report this
blip 16
Coasting on Odd Future hype. Eventually there won't be enough of that to go around.
Posted by blip on December 20, 2012 at 2:01 PM · Report this
ugh...Little Rock. We played at The Parlor in 2000. When I booked it I was unaware that it was literally the back room of a tattoo parlor. Played with a Crisco Kids equivalent, very young, likely their 1st or second show. 12 people in the audience on a tuesday night. The owner had taken a heroic amount of speed earlier in the day. by the end of the show he was in crashed-out, surly mode and pulled a knife when I asked about getting a few bucks for gas. This was followed by an oil change where the dudes from the shop wouldn't give us our keys back until we 'tipped' them. Why can't school shootings happen there?
Posted by Chris Jury on December 20, 2012 at 12:37 PM · Report this
You are way off base with the Crisco Kids.
Posted by You are wrong. on December 20, 2012 at 11:15 AM · Report this
Il Porno Star 13
Little Rock! I remember Chino Horde, Generation of Vipers, and William Martyr 17, but those maybe before your time.
Posted by Il Porno Star on December 19, 2012 at 8:39 PM · Report this
Cookie? flesh Compressor?
Posted by Mickey in Ar on December 19, 2012 at 6:35 PM · Report this
LEE. 11
you have been on fucking point today, Brian. are you still going to contribute to Line Out after you move?'s sad yr mad.
Posted by LEE. on December 19, 2012 at 4:38 PM · Report this
fletc3her 10
Sounds like a "Tricky" concert I once saw.
Posted by fletc3her on December 19, 2012 at 4:27 PM · Report this
Brian Cook 9
@8 i don't have Netflix. do they mention the chicken coop in North Little Rock? I played there the next year with Cop Sodomy.
Posted by Brian Cook on December 19, 2012 at 4:19 PM · Report this
tallchris 8
This is great. Brian, there's actually a documentary on Netflix about that Little Rock punk scene.
Posted by tallchris on December 19, 2012 at 3:37 PM · Report this
Stop posting Line Out shit on Slog. It doesn't belong there and if your posts can't generate traffic on their own merits on the appropriate blog, maybe you shouldn't be blogging/posting at all.
Posted by I Got Nuthin' on December 19, 2012 at 3:19 PM · Report this
emor 6
That Crisco Kids show sounds pretty awesome. One wonders what they're up to now.....
....and YouTube provides an answer: still sucking at music in 2009.
Posted by emor on December 19, 2012 at 3:07 PM · Report this
bunnypuncher 5
@Brian + Lar - A problem I've had with many hiphop shows for years. Cannot understand why people still do that.
Posted by bunnypuncher on December 19, 2012 at 1:47 PM · Report this
Larry Mizell, Jr. 4
this is real. rapping over yourself at the show is so so dumb and so many people refuse to do otherwise.
Posted by Larry Mizell, Jr. on December 19, 2012 at 1:35 PM · Report this
Estey 3
Great, great, GREAT review.
Posted by Estey on December 19, 2012 at 1:34 PM · Report this
Brian Cook 2
@1 to be fair, i've never heard them recorded. and as i said, the tracks actually seemed decent. but the MCs' delivery and stage presence was infuriating.
Posted by Brian Cook on December 19, 2012 at 1:23 PM · Report this
bunnypuncher 1
Almost sad that every time you post something like this I know it will be something I like hahaha. (Can't say anything about their performance because I wasn't there, but I like their newest album quite a bit.)
Posted by bunnypuncher on December 19, 2012 at 1:11 PM · Report this

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