Is ICP serious?

We all know their fans are pretty serious. But do the band members themselves take themselves seriously?

Faygo soda, the Dark Carnival, it’s all so cheesy and over-the-top. The Onion article that was linked in that other thread shows the exact kind of image the band gives off.

I think they’re serious about making money. Gotta give them credit for creating such a gimmick. They sell, man. And that’s all that really matters.

YOu mean they really do like Faygo pop? It wasn’t just a stupid Onion joke?

Supposedly Faygo is a key ingredient in their stage shows.

I know, I don’t get it either, but I knew some people in high school who were big into ICP.

hey now!

diss icp all you want (i can’t stand them), but leave faygo alone! the cream soda and rock n’ rye are the best sodas to grace this earth!

I’ve never tried the cream soda, but Rock-n-Rye is about the most godawful thing I have ever tasted, second only to another Faygo classic: RedPop. BLEAH!

Oh yeah … I think ICP is merely “pulling a Springer,” i.e. using shock value to attract people on the fringe. Remember when Marilyn Manson was big? And before him, anyone remember Alice Cooper? The thing about Manson and Cooper, though, is that it could be argued that they had some musical talent. I see none in ICP. (and yes, I used to be a fan, until I realized what talent was.)

-Dirty

The Faygo thing is just because they’re from Michigan and so is the pop. Actually, Faygo does tend to remain pretty popular here, I’ll occasionally have a Rock n Rye or a Redpop. Faygo puts out a lot of flavors no one else has. In the case of the Candy apple flavor, its easy to see why no one else makes it.

ICP wishes they were GWAR. 'Nuff said.

The ICP serious-not serious argument has two sides. Its like professional wrestling really. You have the 15 year old punks who take it entirely too seriously and pay a premium for the honor of enjoying ICP. Then you have everyone else who thinks ICP is a big joke. As a 20 year old dorky white male I have argued for both sides of the ICP dispute at different points in my life.

Does it really matter whether or not they take themselves seriously? Look at the crap thats on MTV these days. You think that N-sync takes themselves seriously? You think they don’t realize that they’re a crappy pop band who pumps out album after album of identical BS, just so 12 year old girls will make their parents purchase every ounce of it. Let me tell you, if someone offered me any significant sum of money to sell out, I’d be all over that! Pass me the hammer pants and the bad lyrics. I need to start learning how to dance. When do I get my first check???

ICP gets paid more than YOU! and they get to spend all their time being worshipped. Sounds like a lot of fun to me.

Yeah, but isn’t GWAR satire?

What would they be satirical about, exactly? Am I to understand that ICP really is a group of insane clowns?

To start, I really don’t have any idea how seriously ICP takes themselves. For you to really embrace everything they advocate in their songs would be difficult, and mostly unpleasant. They have four primary foci in their songs:

  1. Sex with fat, unattractive women. They return to it again and again, with special attention on how indiscriminate they are in their sexual liasions, and the faults of the women in question. This can get grotesque.

  2. Killing people. This can get truly grotesque, as they go into methodology and gore-flecked detail with undisguised relish. There is generally little talk of shootings, with hatchets being a preferred weapon.

  3. Outcasts, of all sorts. They style themselves as sort of ultimate outcasts, in terms of birth, life, school, and their professional endeavors. Song after song about how strange they are, hated and friendless, disliked by the advantaged kids at school, on and on in that same vein. This alienation, I think, is at the heart of all of their music, inextricably woven into basically their entire stage persona, and would make an excellent paper or five for some aspiring sociologist (or psychologist, or whatever appropriate discipline.

  4. An odd invented mythology surrounding the “Dark Carnival,” from which stems their stage makeup and Insane Clown act. This also ties back into #3, the whole alienated freaks schtick. Though too convoluted and inarticulately expressed to go into here, they have a fairly complex bit built up around the arrival of characters from this circus (through album releases) building up to some final brouhaha.

When taken all together, this is a really surreal mix, and it’s technically impossible to take it all seriously. Some of their earlier work does indicate that this stage persona thing has been steadily built up, and become more sophisticated. What kids buy into is the sense of rebellion behind it, rebellion against that alienation. I think the fans get a kind of resonance rather than serious belief- these are fantasies in the Big Rock Candy Mountain vein, not the “Gee, I wish I had a Corvette” vein. “Getting it” in this case involves understanding what that kind of angst and anger stems from (and multiple head injuries can help with that), not taking it seriously. I think most people, including a minority of fans, just don’t understand the underlying theme. A lot of alienated, geeky adolescents do, though, and many people who grew out of that still get the joke and dig the tunes.