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Bill Brown

A complicated man.

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I went to an MC Frontalot concert Saturday night with a friend and had an incredible time. Let me preface this all by saying that I am not a concertgoer: I don't enjoy crowds, am not a people-watcher, prefer studio-produced music, and am a cheapskate. The only concerts I have ever paid for was Public Enemy and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy twice; aside from that, I've either gotten free tickets or the concerts were entirely free. I do, however, love music and spend plenty of money buying it on CD, through iTunes, or, lately, Amazon MP3.

I'm a longtime fan of the Front and went to his concert last year when he came to town. He puts on a great show and so I just had to go. Plus you can't beat the price at $10. Also appearing were the Minibosses and MC Lars, whom I had heard of but never heard.

I knew it was going to be different this year as soon as we pulled into the parking lot. There was a line stretching through the entire strip mall and we were half an hour early. We passed the time joking about the various misfits we saw and most revolved around these weirdos with long hair who were wearing black jumpsuits with yellow pentagrams and dripping with fringe. They looked like Satanic disco goers.

Turns out those freaks were the unannounced opening act, Totally Radd!! (which they weren't, incidentally). I won't waste valuable electrons fully describing their set since they were really not worth mentioning.

The Minibosses were next. Apparently, they're a local band; their schtick is covering video game theme songs like Super Marios Brothers or Castlevania. Like last year, I appreciated their skill but couldn't identify of the video games they were re-creating. I had a Colecovision and a Nintendo in my childhood, but they never made a lasting impression on my because I wasn't very good.

The biggest surprise of the night was MC Lars. After listening to his set, I was annoyed that I had never listened to anything of his. The songs he played—"Mr. Raven," "iGeneration," "Download This Song," "Generic Crunk Rap Song," and "Hot Topic is Not Punk Rock"—were awesome and his stagecraft was perfect. He had his laptop powering two projectors and he amazingly never lost synchronization with their presentations.

MC Frontalot was excellent, as always. He even improvised for a bit while his guitarist changed instruments. He had a new drummer since his last tour and I didn't like him as well. The only bad thing I can say about his set versus last year's is that I think his vocals were sometimes overwhelmed by the band. He performed three songs from his new CD but due to the music I wouldn't have known what he was saying if I hadn't listened to the songs previously. It could be that he was just really tired since he didn't start until after midnight and finished around 1:30 AM.

If you ever have a chance to go to one of his concerts, I'd recommend it highly: $10 for four bands and 4½ hours of entertainment is an astounding value. I don't know how they make much money but they obviously do—they've earned it!