(hed) p.e.The Rock, Thursday, Dec. 23
Huntington Beach, Calif., hip-hop metallers (hed) p.e. made a stop in Tucson Thursday night on their way home for the holidays.
The bus should have kept going.
For 60 minutes, a surprisingly packed house at The Rock was treated to a lesson in Ebonics, along with other oddities, courtesy of frontman Jahred.
"Don't let these muthafuckas brainwash you," Jahred commanded the crowd during the group's opening song. Wearing a baseball hat sideways and rocking hair braids and a wife-beater, Jahred looked like a cross between a common pro athlete and an N.W.A. reject.
The contrast of the musicians' appearances is worth more criticism than the predictable, laughable music (hed) performs. Looking like a combination of Rob Zombie and Fourth Avenue's answer to ZZ Top was Product on turntables and samples. Wearing a trench coat, trucker hat and Elvis sunglasses, Product pointed at bandmates and wandered around the small stage like an ecstasy-inspired raver. Guitarist Jackson and bassist Mark merely sported plain white T-shirts, appearing content with having their jobs.
Throughout the night, Jahred shared his passion for female anatomy in between songs, reminding the crowd that "Ya must respect that vagina," and "Pussy makes the world go 'round."
And the crowd went for it. Everything from devil horns to gang-like signs were waving in the air, while others managed to mosh to the orgy of crap blaring through the amplifiers. (hed)'s breakthrough track, "Killing Time," had the crowd bouncing in sync with Jahred's arm movements. (hed) also teased the crowd with jams of Coal Chamber's "Sway" and N.W.A.'s "Fuck tha Police." Who knew it was metal to be straight outta Compton?
At times, (hed)'s fusion of hip-hop and metal became all too confusing. To get a cheap reaction out of the crowd, Jahred pulled a hip-hop cliché by having the crowd chant, "Hell yeah, fuck yeah," and then shouting, "Somebody scream!"
Jahred's attention-deficient rants further continued the confusion. "Evanescence is for girls. What's up with all the Christian rock bands? Why ain't there any rich soldiers dying?"
Sensing that the crowd was not following his train of thought, Jahred grew frustrated and told his fans to shut the fuck up, then plugged the group's forthcoming album.