Tuesday, February 10, 2009

On Friday, I went to see one of the best live acts of our generation: Mindless Self Indulgence. They were playing in Hamburg, and Ines bought me a ticket for my birthday. I first saw mindless self indulgence (hereforth MSI) when I was 17…unintentionally. Nate, a high school buddy of mine, and I drove 3.5 hrs from Omaha to Kansas City to see Korn and Staind. In the late 90s, both those bands were at the peak of their popularity, and they had no trouble filling the mid-sized arena in Kansas City. MSI scored the opening slot on that tour, though they probably weren’t even listed on the ticket. Why MSI opened for Korn is still a mystery to me, because their music, a mix of punk, hiphop, and electronica, did not fit into the whole nĂ¼ metal scene. Not surprisingly, their performance, both music and stage antics, was not warmly received by the metalhead audience. I didn’t give the band a second thought, as I was too excited to see Korn for the first time. I re-discovered MSI in college, thanks to Napster. Back then, even obscure music was freely available via a quick, innocent, illegal download. On a whim, I downloaded MSIs first and only major label album “Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy”. Shortly thereafter, I and my whole circle of friends were MSI fans. Their music is simply infectious…after a required acclimatization period. Their live shows are similarly memorable. This was clear after seeing MSI as a headliner in Omaha’s greatest rock ‘n roll venue, the Ranch Bowl (which unfortunately no longer exists). Few bands bring so much energy to their live performance; you can get a taste of this by just searching for ‘MSI live’ on youtube. So, now 7 years later, I was interested to see if MSI still could rock the house and whether they could excite a German audience. Yes they can and yes they did. The show included, among others, flying karate kicks from the drum set, insulting the audience, excessive use of the word scheisse and a long strip tease. Ines’s cousin came with me to the concert, and though she did not know MSI’s music, she said that it was one of the best concerts she’d ever seen. The band is obviously still winning new fans with their live shows, because a large portion, if not the majority, of the audience was composed of teenagers. These are kids that were still in elementary school the first time that I saw MSI! Made me feel old…so old that I watched the show from the back of the club, sipping a beer, instead of jumping around in the middle of the audience. To make up for that, though, Ines’s cousin Alex got us autographs from the guitarist and singer. Cool.