Bang! Pow! Boom!

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Bang! Pow! Boom!

Post  Juggaloco420 on Fri Sep 17, 2010 3:20 am

Bang! Pow! Boom! is the eleventh studio album by American hip hop duo Insane Clown Posse. Released on September 1, 2009, it was the group's second album with producer Mike E. Clark since his return to Psychopathic Records, and the first album to focus on the Dark Carnival since the conclusion of the group's original "Joker's Cards" series. The character is the first of a set of six new Joker's Cards.

The album's title refers to a character within the Dark Carnival described as a large, continuing explosion which clears evil souls from the carnival grounds. Bang! Pow! Boom! peaked at number four in the Billboard Top 200. Critics praised Clark's production and the return to the Dark Carnival concept. In 2010, Psychopathic Records released a "Nuclear Edition" of the album, which featured previously unreleased material.
Mike E. Clark produced much of Insane Clown Posse's discography until the group's sixth and seventh albums, Bizzar and Bizaar. After Clark nearly died from a collapsed lung, he became less active in the music industry, his studio not being used for much of the early decade,[3] and the group worked with Mike Puwal on their eighth and ninth albums, The Wraith: Shangri-La and Hell's Pit.[4] In 2006, Clark returned to Psychopathic Records and produced the group's tenth studio album, The Tempest in 2007, but did not work with the group directly.[3] Bang! Pow! Boom! was the first album which Clark worked on directly with Joseph Bruce and Joseph Utsler since Bizaar.[3] Bang! Pow! Boom! was recorded between September 2008 and July 2009 at Clark's Fun House Studio.[2] Bruce listened to music by the psychedelic rock band Gong for inspiration.[3] In order to ensure the quality of their vocal recordings, Bruce and Utsler did not smoke cannabis while recording, and drank hot tea before each take.[5]

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"There comes a time, every so often, when the Dark Carnival begins to swell with the countless souls awaiting judgement, and the thriving mob begins to tear at each other to find a place in lines that stretch out of view. And as attractions open wide to accommodate crowds frantically clawing their way inside, he will come to perform the cleansing."

"Intro", introducing the entity Bang! Pow! Boom!
According to Bruce, the goal was to produce an album that was "very much a part of the Dark Carnival, without it being the seventh Joker's Card".[3] Bang! Pow! Boom! was the first album to focus on this concept since The Wraith: Shangri-La.[6] The album was later revealed to be the first Joker's Card of a "second deck."[7] Bang! Pow! Boom! is a character within the Dark Carnival[8] which Bruce describes as a "continuous explosion that stomps his way through the crowd blowing [...] evil souls [...] to Hell".[9] The album features a series of skits in which rednecks, pedophiles, and husbands who abuse their wives receive phone calls inviting them to the Dark Carnival, where they are promised $100,000 for arriving.[9]

According to Bruce, "In Yo Face" was originally titled "Pie in Yo Face", but it was decided that the final title sounded better.[9] "The Bone" features surf rock-influenced guitars.[3] According to Bruce, "Mike's beat for this was so fuckin' crazy sounding I had no idea what the fuck to do with it."[9] "To Catch a Predator" was written during the mixing process, when the group realized that the album needed a song "that attacks an evil".[9] Inspired by the television series To Catch a Predator, the song's lyrics describe Violent J luring pedophiles into his house to violently murder them. According to Bruce, "I could easily see myself killing pedophiles in real life and having no guilt. The only reason I don’t do it is because I'd probably get caught. So its nice to live it out through my music."[9] "Boing Boing", a comedic sex-oriented rap, samples audio from a pornographic film which had previously been sampled by the group on their Tunnel of Love EP.[9]

"I Found a Body" features lyrics similar to the plot of Weekend at Bernie's,[3] and incorporates Bruce's singing, concluding with a "Pearl Jam style yell".[9] "Fonz Pond" was inspired by a series of bicycle trails and paths leading to what had once been a pond, but had dried out, and was filled with garbage and rusted junk. Rumors spread about kids that died trying to pass the curve surrounding the area.[9] Clark created a beat which sounded unlike what Bruce had initially expected, leading him to write a song about a haunted pond hidden in the woods.[9] Bruce describes the production of "Imma Kill U" as similar to that of early albums by Ice Cube and Public Enemy.[9] Bruce states that Utsler initially hated "Juggalo Island" when they began recording it, and said that it was "too soft" for Insane Clown Posse. Bruce maintained his confidence in the song, but promised Utsler that if he still felt the same way after the song was completed, it would be left off the album. As the recording continued, Utsler began to like the track more, and later praised the song in a phone conversation.[9]

The lyrics of "Miracles" focus on the extraordinary events humans experience in life which often go unacknowledged, and encourages listeners to take time to look at the world and reevaluate their life.[9] The song's music is built around an ascending synthesizer melody, and climaxes with an electric guitar solo performed by Mike E. Clark, and beatboxing by Joseph Utsler.[9][10] The song became a minor sensation on the Internet. [11] "Chop Chop Slide" was inspired by the "Cha Cha Slide".[3]

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The album's title was first announced in the liner notes of Bruce's solo album The Shining.[12] Bang! Pow! Boom! was initially announced as having an April release.[13] Bruce and Utsler participated in a three-day photo shoot for the album's promotional images.[3] The album's release was preceded with a nationwide in-store tour beginning in August, and followed by a 64-day tour, including the group's annual Halloween performance in Detroit.[3] The album was released in three different color variations of the cover: red, blue, and green. Each version features its own unique introduction and hidden track.[14] A sampler for the album was released, featuring a decoder piece for finding hidden messages in the album's artwork.[14]

A special edition of the album, dubbed the "Nuclear Edition", was released on April 6, 2010.[15] It features bonus material from each version of the album, three previously unreleased tracks, the sampler, two music videos and the documentary A Family Underground.[15] The first music video from the album, "In Yo Face", was released on December 18, 2009.[16] The second music video from the album, "Miracles", premiered as part of the "Nuclear Edition" reissue.[15] A third music video from the album, "Juggalo Island", was filmed at the 2010 Gathering of the Juggalos.[17]

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 Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic [1]
Consequence of Sound [6]
The Detroit News (B)[18]
Kik Axe Music Original:
[19]
Nuclear Edition:
[20]
Metro Times (favorable)[21]
Washington City Paper (3.5/5)[22]
Bang! Pow! Boom! debuted at number 1 on the Billboard Top Independent Albums chart and number 4 on the Billboard 200 selling 50,000 copies in its first week.[23][24] In 2010, the "Nuclear Edition" charted at #55 on the Billboard 200, following the release of the "Miracles" music video.[25] By February 2010, the album had sold well over 100,000 copies.[26]

Allmusic reviewer David Jeffries gave the album three out of five stars, calling it "a formulaic album from the kings of slaughterhouse rap-rock, but fans will appreciate the extra enthusiasm from the duo, the bounty of filth, and maybe most of all, the reviving of the Dark Carnival mythos."[1] The Detroit News music critic Adam Graham gave the album a B rating, describing it as "the best material the Clowns have touched since 1999's The Amazing Jeckel Brothers."[18]

Kik Axe Music reviewer Matt Molgaard gave the album a four out of five rating, writing that "even if you’re not a huge fan of the 'commercial' sound [...] there's plenty of grim tracks to appease the appetite of new and old fans alike."[19] Another writer for the website, James Zahn, gave the "Nuclear Edition" reissue 4.5 out of 5.[20]

Washington City Paper writer Andrew Noz gave the album "three and a half 20 oz. Faygo bottles out of five".[22] Consequence of Sound reviewer David Buchanan notes the change to a more positive sound as universally appealing while also noting the comeback of Dark Carnival references as a selling point for long-time fans, giving the album 3.5 stars out of 5.[6] Mike E. Clark received praise for the album's production, which David Jeffries described as "inventive",[1] and Adam Graham described as being "packed with enough hooks, chants and stellar riffs to tide the Juggalo Nation over through a year's supply of Faygo."[18]

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On April 17, 2010 Saturday Night Live aired a sketch which parodied the "Miracles" music video.[27] In the sketch, fictional personalities DJ Supersoak and Lil' Blaster debuted a fictional music video by the Thrilla Killa Klownz called "Magical Mysteries" as part of Under Underground Records' "Underground Rock Minute".[28] The fictional video featured Ryan Phillippe and Bobby Moynihan rapping about things such as "where the sun hides at night" and blankets.[28] Saturday Night Live had previously parodied Psychopathic Records in 2009.[29] Insane Clown Posse called the "Miracles" parody "a huge honor".[28]

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Blue cover
No. Title Writer(s) Performer(s) Length
1. "Intro"   Jumpsteady Andrew Montesi 1:25
2. "Beautiful Doom"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:05
3. "In Yo Face"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:07
4. "The Bone"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:54
5. "Zombie Slide"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:27
6. "To Catch a Predator"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:21
7. "Boing Boing"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:46
8. "I Found A Body"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:46
9. "Love"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:16
10. "Fonz Pond"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:03
11. "Imma Kill U"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:31
12. "Juggalo Island"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:58
13. "Vultures"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:51
14. "Vera Lee"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:17
15. "Miracles"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:13
16. "Bang! Pow! Boom!" (Contains the hidden track "Over A Bitch") ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 11:42
Total length:
75:44
Green cover
No. Title Writer(s) Performer(s) Length
1. "Intro"   Jumpsteady Andrew Montesi 1:25
2. "The Clowns Are Back"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 2:29
3. "In Yo Face"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:07
4. "The Bone"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:54
5. "Zombie Slide"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:27
6. "To Catch a Predator"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:21
7. "Boing Boing"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:46
8. "I Found A Body"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:46
9. "Love"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:16
10. "Fonz Pond"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:03
11. "Imma Kill U"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:31
12. "Juggalo Island"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:58
13. "Vultures"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:51
14. "Vera Lee"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:17
15. "Miracles"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:13
16. "Bang! Pow! Boom!" (Contains the hidden track "Chop Chop Slide") ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 13:19
Red cover
No. Title Writer(s) Performer(s) Length
1. "Intro"   Jumpsteady Andrew Montesi 1:25
2. "Freaky Creep Show"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 2:56
3. "In Yo Face"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:07
4. "The Bone"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:54
5. "Zombie Slide"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:27
6. "To Catch a Predator"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:21
7. "Boing Boing"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:46
8. "I Found A Body"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:46
9. "Love"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:16
10. "Fonz Pond"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:03
11. "Imma Kill U"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:31
12. "Juggalo Island"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:58
13. "Vultures"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:51
14. "Vera Lee"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:17
15. "Miracles"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:13
16. "Bang! Pow! Boom!" (Contains the hidden track "Our Hero") ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 11:42
Nuclear Edition (Disc 1)
No. Title Writer(s) Performer(s) Length
1. "Intro"   Jumpsteady Andrew Montesi 1:25
2. "Triple Threat Mix"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:17
3. "In Yo Face"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:07
4. "The Bone"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:54
5. "Zombie Slide"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:27
6. "To Catch a Predator"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:21
7. "Boing Boing"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:46
8. "I Found A Body"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:46
9. "Love"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:16
10. "Fonz Pond"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:03
11. "Imma Kill U"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:31
12. "Juggalo Island"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:58
13. "Vultures"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:51
14. "Vera Lee"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:17
15. "Miracles"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 5:13
16. "Bang! Pow! Boom!"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 6:36
Total length:
72:49
Nuclear Edition (Disc 2)
No. Title Writer(s) Performer(s) Length
1. "Over a Bitch"     ICP 4:12
2. "Our Hero"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:07
3. "Chop Chop Slide"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 6:02
4. "Supernatural"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:39
5. "Tonight"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 3:27
6. "It's All Over"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 4:24
7. "Bang! Pow! Boom! Sampler"   ICP and Mike E. Clark ICP 11:05
Total length:
37:00
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Musicians

Insane Clown Posse – vocals, lyricist, producer, performer, mixing, vocal engineer, vocal editing
Mike E. Clark – programming, skit vocals, producer, engineer, mixing
Razor Ray – guitar on "Bang! Pow! Boom!"
Violent J – skit vocals
Shaggy 2 Dope – skit vocals
Rich "Legs Diamond" Murrel – skit vocals
Michelle "Sugar Slam" Rapp – skit vocals
Dan Diamond – skit vocals
Martin Gross – skit vocals
Carlos "Southwest Sol" Guadarrama – skit vocals
Wacko – skit vocals
Awesome Dre – skit vocals
Corporal Robinson – skit vocals
Brian Kuma – skit vocals
Additional personnel

Bill Kozy – mixing
Eric Davie – skit vocals, assistant engineer
Todd Fairall – assistant engineer
Jim Kissling – mastering
Gary Arnett – artwork, graphic design
Dan Christie – artwork, graphic design
Jon Bowling – artwork, graphic design
John Eder – photography
Charles Green – prop design

chart positions
Chart (2009) Peak Position
Billboard 200 4[30]
Top Independent Albums 1[30]
Top Rap Albums 3[30]
Nuclear Edition

Chart (2010) Peak Position
Billboard 200 55[25]
Top Modern Rock/Alternative Albums 30[30]
Top Rock Albums
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