Friday, March 11, 2016

Mac Sabbath brings rock circus to town, and an open letter to the WWE (The Social)

Posted By on Fri, Mar 11, 2016 at 11:36 AM

THIS LITTLE UNDERGROUND 

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
Say what you will about a parody band but, really, you could do much worse than channeling Black Sabbath musically and taking aim at the fast-food industrial complex lyrically. Meet L.A.’s Mac Sabbath (Mar. 9, The Social). Unlike the parasitic dress-up hackery of all those touring tribute acts, there’s some actual satire and subversion going on here – you know, art. And compared to the general state of American discourse right now, it probably qualifies as high art.

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social

I’ve been called music snob once or a thousand times in my life. But that allegation only goes so far for someone who’s forgiven as many lapses in art for sheer showmanship as I have. I’ve even gone to bat for ICP, sort of. And regarding a sense of theater, Mac Sabbath have it on lock.

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social

Once their red-cloth curtain dropped to begin the show, the scene was McDonaldland on bad acid with twisted burlesques of Ronald McDonald (“Ronald Osbourne”), Mayor McCheese (“Slayer MacCheeze”), Grimace (“Grimalice”) and Hamburglar (“Cat Burglar” aka “Peter Criss Cut Fries”).

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social

Besides the band members, the stage was fitted with tall, demonic clown props whose mouths spewed fog and whose eyes shot lasers. That sentence alone probably just earned them a few thousand more fans.

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
In essence, it’s a miniature, Mickey D-themed GWAR. Though smaller in scale to GWAR’s huge production, a Mac Sabbath performance isn’t just a concert. It’s an event, a happening. Judging from the mania and allegiance they’re capable of inspiring here, this is a genuine cult phenomenon in the making.

click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social
click to enlarge Mac Sabbath at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • Mac Sabbath at the Social


Beyond the gimmick, however, the band is actually quite good. And conceptually, there’s some genius and balls in this little culture jam and its full flex of copyright fair use in the face of a titanic corporate force. It’s ridiculous, it’s heavy and it’s diabolically effective.

click to enlarge American Party Machine at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • American Party Machine at the Social

Of course, the only proper local way to prime for a spectacle like that is with Orlando’s own resident rock circus American Party Machine. There’s probably little I haven’t already gushed about regarding my favorite homegrown stage act. But given the fresh blockbuster event news of WrestleMania returning to Orlando (Apr. 21, 2017, Citrus Bowl), I cannot emphasize enough how much of a miscarriage of cosmic justice it would be if this band – who owes its entire gimmick and raison d’être to pro wrestling – isn’t tapped for the festivities in some way.

click to enlarge American Party Machine at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • American Party Machine at the Social

So consider this an open letter to the WWE in advocacy of American Party Machine: Guys, this band is essentially you in the form of a rock band. Seriously, these dudes routinely put someone through a table at their concerts. Just look at this shit:


At this particular show, in honor of the headliner, it was the Burger King. Tell me this isn’t a rock spectacle that’s red, red meat for your demographic. You’re welcome.

click to enlarge American Party Machine at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • American Party Machine at the Social
click to enlarge American Party Machine at the Social - JAMES DECHERT
  • James Dechert
  • American Party Machine at the Social
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This Little Underground is Orlando Weekly's music column providing perspective, live reviews and news on the city's music scene.

Follow Bao on Twitter (@baolehuu)
Email Bao: baolehuu@orlandoweekly.com



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