Crazy Circus Duo Unveils ‘The Wraith: Shangri – La’

El Vaquero Staff Writer

Remember your childhood nightmares of evil clowns? Well, the Detroit-based circus duo The Insane Clown Posse is the unfortunate reality of that trembling nightmare. Commonly referred to as ICP, members Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J have just unveiled their sixth album, “The Wraith Shangri-La.”

The outspoken rappers take themes from their albums from jokers in decks of cards to tell a story. “The Wraith Shangri-La” defies all conventions of a normal album in its extremely bizarre content.

In the album’s introduction a deep voice slowly and calmly states, “He [the presence] is known by many names, but is known to the living as thy Wraith/He walks upon worlds forgotten, and descends upon thy path that thy have chosen (Shangri-La)/Only now will we truly understand thy meaning of thy saga, for this saga all along, each jokers card, is actually none other than… the echo of our lives.”

In the following tracks, the listener is abruptly awakened by endless derogatory and explicit lyrics that can’t be confused with musical greatness.

A brave listener may feel the need to tap on Violent J’s shoulder during “Thy Staleness” and ask him how committing something as horrific as a murder would soothe his pain. It is impossible to label which is more appalling, the detailed violent acts in “Murder Rap,” or the abusive slam against women in “Ain’t yo Bidness.”

As if the album did not make a listener’s stomach turn enough, ICP also provides a visual representation through a DVD of one of their concerts. The clips show a soda-drenched audience that is strongly encouraged to start a “Juggalos” mosh pit while women flash before the camera. The concert is a free-for-all with fireworks exploding in the background.

While it is effortless to spot the moral flaws of this album, the beats are indeed catchy and impressive. But it’s a shame the beats are blurred by the aggressively ugly lyrics.

It is also very difficult to keep up with the words because it seems that each band member raps without any regard to form. If in fact ICP was aiming to create such corrupt ideals, they have succeeded with flying colors.

“The Wraith Shangri-La” is definitely for an audience that can handle all the inappropriate comments and challenge their musical taste in finding some form of a meaning behind such a dysfunctional rap duo. To say the least, it does give an additional meaning to clowning around.

“The Wraith Shangri-La” is currently in stores.