Friday, April 19, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 134



Tenacious D pays tribute to selves, music and crowd

By Ray Hafner
Daily Cougar Staff

Can the greatest rock band in the world write a tribute song to a song that doesn't exist? Can the most epic rock performers sing most
passionately about Sasquatch, kielbasa sausage and socks? Can that band be made up of just two fat middle-aged white guys?

The answer on all counts: No. Definitely not.

But the funniest one can, and Wednesday night at the Verizon Wireless Theater, Tenacious D came to Houston for its very first show ever in
Space City to fill that bill.

The duo that is Tenacious D, Kyle Gass and Jack Black (who in another life makes movies), humbly strode to the front of an almost bare stage
while the crowd whipped itself into a cheering frenzy.

The set opened with the theme from Flash Gordon before it segued into its current hit "Wonder Boy." The band played its first four songs without
pausing for any of the comedic banter that makes up nearly half its self-titled first album. Then someone threw a joint on stage.

"That's not what it's about," Black said, feigning anger. "The genius is what it's about. That's just a side benefit." The two blazed the doobie,
which they claimed was only "oregano," creating a perfect transition to their next song "Explosivo" about climbing onto their steeds and smoking
some weed.

From then on the band had trouble keeping the crowd in the same fervor. On the album the comedic bits are tight and serve mostly to get the
listener to the next song. When these bits are stretched over a nearly two-hour performance it can seem to drag on.

"Tribute" is a song billed as the greatest and best song in the world ... tribute, because apparently KG and JB (as they're known on stage)
created the greatest song in the world, but promptly forgot it. After playing that song the band left the stage to go do some LSD in the desert and
find its new epic song.

Stagehands brought out a projection screen to show the first of two videos. While the first one was funny and finished with KG giving birth to a
baby through his anus, the clips slowed down the whole show.

They returned to stage carrying the baby doll and Kyle launched an a capella ditty titled "Butt Boy." The duo then offered up the titular baby to the
audience throwing it to a well-endowed woman saying "it will be well fed."

Finally they got back on with the show, but this middle portion seemingly went on forever. It was not until JB brought out a Saxaboom to play that
the audience fell back in love with them. The Saxaboom is a kid's toy that most likely does nothing but annoy parents in the hands of their
children. But when that same instrument is placed in the hands of a serious musician, or JB's, it works wonders.

The team finished up the night with a three-song encore promising to return. The crowd cheered loudly but not as enthusiastically as at the
beginning. After the long set it might be better if Tenacious D just came out with a new CD.

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