Tenacious D (3 stars)
November 11, House of Blues
"This is the most disgusting crowd I've ever faced!" opening comedian Neil Hamburger proclaimed before Tenacious D's sold-out set at the House of Blues (and a man who jokes, "Why did Colonel Sanders' daughters absolutely refuse to eat KFC extra-crispy fried chicken? Well, it brought back too many bad memories of their father's foreskin!" knows from disgusting). Perhaps not so much disgusting as drunk, rowdy and sporting more backward baseball caps than a Fred Durst look-alike convention, the audience refused to grasp his comedic subtleties, instead chanting "D!" "D!" "D!" until their beloved faux-rock duo took the stage.
Jack "J.B." Black and Kyle "K.G." Gass, zonked out on a Roseanne-era couch in "Kyle's living room," arose, stretched and took to their acoustic guitars with fan-favorite "Kielbasa." Devil horns flying and tongue wagging, the actor/wildman and his goofily grinning sidekick delivered an even mix of tunes from their 2001 self-titled debut and their newest mass-media assault, the Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny movie and soundtrack. "History" served as backdrop for lighting up; fans then crooned along to Black's exaggerated falsetto and pumped their fists as the singer took them "far away from the mucky muck" of "Wonderboy." That's levitation, holmes.
When the show started to get theatrical, and the duo got "electrocuted" and wound up in "hell," and-re-creating a scene from the film-the devil competed in a rock-off over Gass' soul, it became clear that the audience didn't anticipate being subjected to Tenacious D: The Musical ("This show has been going on forever," one fading frat boy said to his yawning girlfriend. "It's like Schindler's List.").
Once Gass "quit" the band then rejoined to the tunes "Dude (I Totally Miss You)" and "Friendship," not even the hailstorm of "Master Exploder" could restore the evening's pace. As a Broadway production, the Tenacious D tour would show promise. When a simple concert rides on his shoulders, however, Black's scruffy, animated charm gets buried in the spectacle.