Rhino’s was the place to be Monday night with a thirteen dollar triple threat consisting of Chicago’s premiere Nintendo centric rock band, I Fight Dragons, Jacksonville Florida’s own dirty south punk band Whole Wheat Bread, and the nerdcore giant MC Chris!
We arrived at 7:30, the doors opened at 7:00, and the first band took the stage at 8:00, giving a good deal of time to meander around, check merch out and scope the local crowd. As eight approached, the stage was flooded with NES controllers, dance pads and a group of guys (and girls) wearing Justice League shirts. The group in question was I Fight Dragons, the Chicago based band with a pension for all things Nintendo and DC Comics.
Now, before Monday, I had never heard of this band and was not too sure how I would feel about them. Even now after the show I’m still not to sure. The group was energetic, playing a poppy mix of indie rock and tossing in a handful of Nintendo sounds and other game-inspired techno bits. The group was all over, dancing and having a good time, but this didn’t save the fact that their sound seemed a bit recycled. Now I must say, they did a good job and even threw in an A Capella rendition of The Legend of Zelda’s theme song. The tune was complete with the rhythm and bass guitar players marching about like little soldiers. IFD was really into the music but a big lack of crowd interaction left me kinda miffed and ready for the next act.
The band wrapped up and the lights came on, then the party began. A roadie wheeled a gold drum kit on stage, and hooked up a drum machine with it. Yes, I said GOLD kit. Not real gold mind you but it was flashy! Whole Wheat Bread prepared for their hostile take over.
I have heard of WWB before and I was always impressed with their solid blend of all out punk rock, hip-hop and rap styling, and I knew a good time was about to be had. Aron, Joseph, and Will took the stage and began a sound check and general chat with the crowd (big points in my book). Soon after the lights dimmed and the show started, they came out swinging with the song 206, a catchy punk tune about having a good time– partying and all that good stuff. The crowd erupted, a circle pit started and everyone was having a good time until a member of security pulled my diminuative friend from the circle pit, telling him to “calm it down” and pushing him out of the crowd.
They played a few tracks from their new album Hearts of Hoodlums, then Will left the stage for a drink and Joseph a.k.a Mr. Whitefolks came out behind his gold kit and proceeded to freestyle rap with Aron. The venue went from a punk show to a rap party, loud thumping bass and lyrics by the two had the crowd chanting along and singing. They wrapped up with HoH’s headlining track Bombs Away, once again sending us into a storm of dancing, fighting and general tomfoolery. The band left the stage after introducing MC Chris and got down in the crowd, talking to fans and planning the night’s partying.
After talking to Aron and Will from WWB ,who were very humble and very cool to talk to, lights went dim and the Dungeon Master of Ceremonies took the stage. A little man in a jacket and hat walked onto the stage, standing over a Mac was the last thing I expected to see when I looked on stage.
MC Chris put on one of the best live show’s I’ve seen. From the moment he took the stage, he was quick to grab the crowd and take over. He started with “Is it just me, or Does the new Ghostbusters Game Seem Like a Fishing Game? DISCUSS!” and then he turned, pushing play and starting his set with “White Kids Love Hip-Hop”. MC had the crowd moving, demanding “rap hands” and the wave as well as, at one point, having us all act like zombies during “MC Chris is Dead,” during which he acted like Chris Redfield from Resident Evil and began to shoot the crowd and throwing an imaginary incendiary grenade while yelling “INCENDIARY GRENADE! I WIN!” He went across his entire career, playing The Tussin, Fette’s Vette, Japanese Maid, Pizza But, and many more.
The bottom line is MC had the crowd swept up in his performance, using us in chorus and other lines, even educating us on his Indiana/Illinois heritage and his love of the state in the fall. He dubbed us the Children of the Corn, and asked why we don’t hate Ohio more. At one point he even yelled at an attention wanting hoebag, his exact words to the girl being “You want attention and shall get none from me, HOEBAG!” Everyone had an overall good time and rocked the place silly.
Thirteen bucks, three bands, and possibly the best three hours of my life to date. The show was amazing, the bands did a great job and with the exception of the douche bag Security Guard at Rhino’s, the night was a huge success. I highly recommend checking out any of the three band’s for a good time.
Final Score: 9.0/10 (Outstanding)