By Carl Carpenter –
Mexican Beer brand Dos Equis, produced by the Cuauhtémoc-Moctezuma Brewery based in Monterrey, brought its “Most Interesting Show In The World Tour” to Minneapolis last night. The show took place on the West Bank at The Cabooze. It was headlined by Andrew W.K., whose 2001 debut I Get Wet was an international hit, and went number 1 in America. W.K. curated the night’s events, which included a variety of strange, circus-like feats.
He took the stage at 9:30, announcing the countdown of a man who was attempting to break the world record by holding his breathe for 14 minutes. I was standing next to a U of Minnesota medical student at the time, and he informed me that after 5 minutes of submersion, brain damage occurs, and that people usually die between 9 and 12 minutes. Upon closer inspection, many in the area claimed to be able to see a thin tube extending up from the bottom of the tank. The other acts were less refutable. An Italian man balanced a head-stand on top of a basketball. There was a burlesque dancer, and also an eerily masked figure who shot confetti out of a bubble similar to the one Wayne Coyne uses to walk on crowds when the Flaming Lips play a festival. The bubble performance was soundtracked by a live version of techno classic “Sandstorm.”
Andrew W.K. finally began his set at around 10:30. He started by announcing he had recorded most of his debut album in Minneapolis. He started with one of his big singles, “She Is Beautiful.” He received the best crowd response when he played his other Billboard hits like, “Party Hard” and “I Get Wet.” W.K., who is undoubtedly a big draw, may have received a stronger reaction on his lesser known numbers if the event had not been so corporately oriented. The free beer and promotion connected to the Dos Equis “Most Interesting Show In The World” ad campaign drew an assortment of demographics not typically seen at a W.K. show. There were few people head banging, and the crowd was largely motionless besides during his major radio-play recieving numbers.
To add to the corporate feel of the show, there were big screen TVs on each end of the venue, presumably so they could fill the place to an extreme end where not everyone would be able to see the show. There were also Dos Equis girls in bunny suits walking around asking people to take a quick three question survey, the idea being to get you email address. Upon successful survey completion, she would then hand out a Dos Equis key-chain. Other outlets there to take advantage of this consumer crowd included KARE 11. One of their photographers was walking around asking, “Can I take your picture for KARE 11 news.” Once the photo was taken he then divulged, “This will be posted on the metromix website. You should head there to check it out!” Ultimately, the creative marketing at the show turned out to be as interesting as the performance.