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Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Veteran music journalist with 20+ years of experience. Supporter of indie artists. Lover of day baseball, & B-movies. Part time ninja. Kicked cancer’s ass. My memoir, ChemBro, is out now!
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Hooking Up w/ The Makeout Party
Wednesday, November 21, 2007

No!z Machine, Me, Mish The Mish Mash, Fatty and Tigerbeat

This past Saturday former Artists of the Week The Makeout Party held an album release event for their Spell Check… 1… 2 EP at Lit Lounge in New York City. Already a fan of their music, at the show I learned that when The Makeout Party performs, unless you are incredibly uptight, and by uptight I mean the kind of person who didn’t like Pootie Tang, you have no choice but to have a good time. Fun was on the menu and The Makeout Party were serving it up fresh.

The Makeout Party is, above all else, a throwback to when Hip-Hop was fun. If you recall, one of the cornerstones of Hip-Hop was that DJs used to extend disco breaks and give the mic to an MC to rhyme over them. If that MC could rock the party and make the crowd move he accomplished what was his sole goal at the time. Rap has evolved from that to tackle some important issues, and devolved in some cases to player posturing and pointless gunplay, but the backbone has always been the MC has to be able to move the crowd. With that in mind The Makeout Party isn’t looking to change the world, they’re just looking to make you shake your ass and have a good time for a half hour or so. On Saturday they accomplished this goal.

With songs about male-dominated parties (“Sausage Fest), being an easy lay (“Easy”), wearing G-Unit underwear (“Get Classy”) and waking up as a robot (didn’t catch the title of that one) The Makeout Party clearly aren’t interested in a laminated ghetto pass and the good news is neither is anyone in their fan base. A packed Lit Lounge rocked out to a full set by the quartet of Tigerbeat, Mish The Mish Mash, Fatty and No!z Machine, which included both songs from their EP and unreleased material. By the end of the evening the group had the crowd so inspired they were doing call and response for “Sausage Fest,” a song which, if it could find a way to reach the rest of the country, would be a staple at a college bars and house parties everywhere.

Dressed insanely, and with hilarious pop-influenced choreography, The Makeout Party may have looked more like the antonym of the word rapper rather than any part of the definition, but they’re used to being the book that’s judged by its cover. Tigerbeat even commented that when she tells people she’s a rapper they usually “laugh at her.” Their show on Saturday induced plenty of laughter, but all in the way they intended. The only issues they had were with sound. Because they have no DJ they were stuck using a Discman, yes a Discman, and a beat CD. If there had been a DJ running the show they would have been fine because the DJ would have just popped the CD into his computer and the sound would have run at least semi-smoothly, but since the opening acts, an interesting duo called Donkey Flamingo and a fantastic White Stripes-ish group named Hate My Day Job, were both rock acts there was no DJ to hand a CD to. At times Mish had to find interesting ways to turn people’s mics up and for the most part it worked (which I suppose is the huge plus of having a professional sound guy as a member of the group), but A DJ would have made life a lot easier.

Lit Lounge is normally a rock club, and from what I hear a grimy rock club at that, but on this night things were cleaned up a bit, a friend of mine even commented “this is not your normal Lit crowd.” Nope, but it was an ebullient Lit crowd as I saw numerous happy faces throughout the evening. Sometimes it’s OK to wipe the gangsta grill off of your face, put on a t-shirt that actually comes close to fitting, and smile at a stranger. Some people may scoff at the idea of a rap group that doesn’t rap about anything that’s supposedly important, and I could take post after post to explain how and why groups like The Makeout Party are necessary (there’s a magical little thing called balance that’s always needed in everything in life), but I’d rather simply quote Murs, who opened his “Breakfast Club” collaboration with Supernatural on Z-Trip’s 2005 album Shifting Gears by saying, “if you can’t relate to this song you’re taking this shit too serious. It’s Hip-Hop, man, it’s... it’s fuckin’ fun.”

So get your gangsta grill on, get your headwrap on, but at the same time don’t forget to be balanced and have some fun, too. If you’re not having at least a little bit of fun once in a while what’s the point?

Related Links

Website: themakeoutparty.com
MySpace: myspace.com/themakeoutparty
Adam’s World: Artist of the Week – The Makeout Party
posted by Adam Bernard @ 7:55 AM  
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