Panto season is nearly upon us and like two
lice-ridden ugly sisters, Insane Clown Posse are with us again. They’ve sent Cinderella out to work the streets, stabbed Prince Charming with a screwdriver, and my God, you don’t want to see what they’ve done to the pantomine horse…
If you’ve ever had a moment’s doubt about Eminem’s ethics, then these two simultaneously released ICP records are a salutary experience. Compared with his Detroit compadres Shaggy and J, Mr Mathers could happily share a nice fireside chat with James Stewart in his [I]It’s A Wonderful Life[/I] incarnation, no less. For ‘Bizaar’ and ‘Bizzar’ are the most offensive records this side of ‘The Millennium Prayer’, a loathsome cavalcade of brutal sex and gleeful violence so sewer-minded you wonder if that stupid make-up isn’t just to disguise their manhole-cover mouths. It would be all too easy to become entangled in the socio-political maze, dithering about art’s ability to fictionalise, to say the unsayable – after all, ICP present themselves as a “dark carnival”, a free-falling fantasy space that coexists alongside the straight world – but in the ugly face of such single-minded obnoxiousness, it seems pointless. Better to tell them to fuck off. It’s the language they understand.
As with the Bloodhound Gang, the most irritating thing about these records is the intelligence that lurks beneath. The whole killer-clown concept is high, not only on “nightclub pills” but the fetid swamp-gas of modern life. Their X-rated [I]Scooby Doo[/I] scenarios often display an impressively vile imagination, nurtured through years of adolescent sweat, dirty sheets, bad TV and clammy frustration.
‘Bizzar”s ‘Questions’ is almost evidence of pure comic subversion – “Every time I stick my eyes with an icepick I can’t see shit – why?/ Every time I try to fly like a birdie I end up on a gurney – why?”. Somebody’s being mocked for stupidity here, and there’s a creeping feeling it’s their more credulous fans. ‘My Axe’ has a chorus that goes, “Swing swing swing/Chop chop chop” and to be honest, if you don’t laugh at that then even Mary Whitehouse has stopped inviting you round for sherry on the grounds of humourlessness. Yet even the exciting 3D spectacles and venereal disease boardgame can’t make up for the fact that ICP perpetuate attitudes beyond cartoon hijinx.
Never mind the fact that their endless hectoring and monotonous horrorcore skulking wear thin like Jim Carrey, it’s ‘Cherry Pie (I Need A Freak)’, the second track of ‘Bizzar’ that halts any nascent enjoyment, demanding “prostitutes” to degrade and “a bitch whose hand I can sever”. “I ain’t sexist but if I am call me the sexiest sexist, bitch”, they snarl on ‘If’ (yeah, every woman’s dream is a man who boasts he’d “fuck a beehive”) but even Spinal Tap cannot save us now. This is nasty, puerile, devoid of real rage, hollow as their heads. Ignore them, and maybe they really will try “French-kissing a light socket”.
Ahh, time for the Slipknot LP. Such nice, sensible boys.