KMFDM: 20 Years of Glorious Self-Absorption

On Monday I got to see KMDFM on their 20th Anniversary Tour at the House of Blues in Anaheim (continuing the industrial/metal onslaught on Disneyland – Skinny Puppy is up next!). For the uninitiated, they’re basically one of the greatest industrial bands of all time. Very hard, consistent, and fun, one of their trademarks is including their name in their songs. A lot. It’s that kind of self-absorption I can really respect. I like people who recognize how awesome they are.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp Overall, they rocked hard. The first part of the set seemed to concentrate on the later stuff; either that or I’m getting senile. I haven’t been up on the last few albums, like ATTAK and WWIII; the last I can recall was ADIOS, so it’s been about 5 years. But when they did Light, the crowd was electrified, and I found I’m definitely not the only one who thinks ANGST was their best. They followed that with Drug Against War, which also rocked the house, but the house appeared to be getting tired by then (the house is not getting any younger). However, the absence of En Esch meant a lot of KMFDM classics had to be cut. This was a serious disappointment, especially for a 20th anniversary tour, where I was expecting a great big “best of”.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp The lineup they did have was solid, though. Sascha was there, of course, the only original left. Jules Hodgson, Andy Selway, and Steve White all did a fine job. The fun, new addition, though, is Lucia Cifarelli, who does all the female vocals. From the back of the club, she looked like a white Salma Hayek. She went from sexy gyrations to tough girl stances, marching and pumping her fist to command the ground troops. Three words. So. Fucking. Adorable. Just something about cute girls trying to act tough that makes them even cuter. I wanted to take her home and put her on display in the living room. She also got the biggest cheers of the night when she walked out after the first encore. We all figured that was it, and were kinda tired, but when she asked for applause – and flashed her silver wonderbra – we all went nuts. As it should be.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp The club itself was decent, and I loved how easy it was to get to, especially in OC. But the vocals were not very clear, and if I didn’t know them already, they were very difficult to make out. Since KMFDM’s lyrics are one their strong suits, this was a letdown. DJ?Acucrack, who opened, also had muddled vocals. Maybe it’s the vocoder, maybe the equipment, but I wanted better. To be fair, I did like what they were spinning, and you can check some of it out at their site.
&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp One of the stranger parts of the experience was the crowd. No, not industrialites in uniform, but the lack thereof! I’m not sure who wins the “most out-of-place” award: the guy in the Cowboys jersey and baseball cap, or the nerdy Asian guy with the white and beige polo shirt, khakis, and black dress shoes. Who am I kidding, the Asian guy wins! I didn’t do much myself, but come on, this is KMFDM. Show some damn respect.