MAC SABBATH Live at the Crescent Ballroom in Phoenix, AZ April 2nd, 2016

MAC SABBATH Rock Sham Shake Tour 2016 Web Cover Photo

REVIEW – The air was thick with heat inside the Crescent Ballroom, just south of Downtown Phoenix, and one could feel the anticipation in the crowd, for this was the return of, and also the last show on the “Rock Sham Shake” tour, of Mac Sabbath. If you’ve never seen or heard of Mac Sabbath, the Cinderella story parody-gimmick band from California, then you wouldn’t understand. In short, Ozzy Osbourne era Black Sabbath (and I do mean very well played Sabbath, instrumentally) meets the Golden Arches. This country’s first amendment allows the use of likenesses, visual and aural, for use as a parody, and as long as the likenesses differ enough to skirt a direct copyright, the parody is protected. This is why “Weird” Al Yankovic is able to do what he does. In this case, the subject of said parody should not be mentioned by their official name, so it will not here either.

Ronald Osbourne, the demented clown with red and white streamers dangling from his sleeves, and the terrible English accent, changes the lyrics to classic tunes like “Iron Man” (“Frying Pan”), “Paranoid” (“Pair O’ Buns”), “War Pigs” (“More Ribs”), and “Children Of The Grave” (“Chicken Eating Slaves”), and especially for the last show of the tour, they broke out the “new” song “Zippin’ Up The Uniform” (“Symptom Of The Universe”), while Slayer McCheese shreds Tony Iommi’s riffs authentically, all while wearing a giant foam hamburger head with Motörhead tusks. GrimAlice, bassist extraordinaire, reproducing Geezer’s bass lines with accuracy in a purple blobby suit complete with a Slash-esque top hat, and drummer Catburglar (also known as Peter Criss Cut Fries), rounds things out nicely.

Opening band, Okilly Dokilly was as silly, but not quite as appealing as Mac Sabbath.  Five guys all dressed as Ned Flanders thrashing about the stage with lots of feedback and noise. I suspect that a member or two of Mac Sabbath is also in Okilly Dokilly. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was the whole band, and they opened for themselves.  I remember GWAR doing that in the mid-90s, opening for themselves as the X-Cops.  Ronald also cleverly made mention of other “Drive Thru Metal” bands such as Dokken Donuts, Spinal Tapplebee’s, and CinnaBon Jovi.  Not to mention the punk side of DTM, like “Agent Orange Julius”, “Dead KenneDennys” and “Mac Flag”

For all intents and purposes, this band shouldn’t be as successful as they are. They have no album to promote, they don’t make many TV appearances- if any at all. It’s kind of a mildly-funny schlocky idea that, I’m sure, had little expectation, even among the band members themselves, of this kind of success. The crowd dug it. When Mac Sabbath ended a song, the crowd responded in an overwhelmingly positive way.  The band seemed to be feeding off of the energy from the crowd as well, and with this being the last show of the tour, Mac Sabbath looked like they had as much fun as one can have while wearing a furry costume.

MAC SABBATH – Phoenix, AZ April 2nd, 2016

Setlist:
01 “More Ribs” (“War Pigs”)
02 “Chicken Eating Slaves” (“Children Of The Grave”)
03 “Brand Of Doom” (“Hand Of Doom”)
04 “N.I.B.B.L.E.” (“N.I.B.”)
05 “Lord Of The Swirl” (“Lord Of This World”)
06 “Zippin’ Up The Uniform” (“Symptom Of The Universe”)
07 “Organic Fuel” (“Electric Funeral”)
08 “Frying Pan” (“Iron Man”)
09 “Cherries Are Fruits” (“Fairies Wear Boots”)
10 “Pair O’ Buns” (“Paranoid”)

 

Mac Sabbath’s first appearance at the Crescent Ballroom in July of 2015