Remember That Time White Zombie Played a Backyard Party in Indiana with MTV?
Do you remember the time that MTV hosted a backyard party in Southern Indiana featuring White Zombie on the stage? I actually grew up, and discovered White Zombie, about a forty-minute drive from where it happened and I had no idea!
It Wasn't 1960-Five-Five-Five... It Was 1992
I distinctly remember the very first time that I saw a White Zombie music video on MTV. It was 1992 and I was about fourteen. I was standing in my boyfriend's living room when the video for "Thunderkiss 65" came on and I was completely mesmerized by the insane visuals flashing chaotic scenes and vintage-looking monsters reminiscent of Big Daddy Roth's artwork.
La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Volume One
While not the band's debut or even sophomore album, La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Volume One was the album that hooked me as a White Zombie fan. "Thunderkiss 65" was huge from that album. "Black Sunshine," which featured Iggy Pop, quickly became a favorite too with the opening of the song describing in visceral detail the power of a Ford Mustang.
Gripping the wheel
His knuckles went white with desire
The wheels of his Mustang
Exploding on the highway
Like a slug from a forty-five
True death, 400 horsepower
Of maximum performance
Piercing the night
This is black sunshine
And then the heavy riffs kicked in... Growing up in a small town in Southern Illinois where at 16, I spent Friday and Saturday nights in empty parking lots with my 1972 Chevelle, talking cars with guys I went to school with, this song always scratched that hotrod itch for me.
The spring of 1995 brought the debut of Astro-Creep: 2000, or its full titles, Astro-Creep: 2000 – Songs of Love, Destruction and Other Synthetic Delusions of the Electric Head, which is quintessential White Zombie with "More Human than Human" and "Grease Paint and Monkey Brains," but my favorite from that album was "Electric Head, Part 2 - (The Ecstasy)"
MTV & White Zombie Team Up
It was later that year that MTV and White Zombie teamed up to "Invade Your Space." The whole premise what that fans could enter for the chance to have MTV come to their home, set up a full stage with light and sound, and have White Zombie perform live.
In October of 1995, I was 16, almost 17 years old and by this time I had gotten very familiar with the forty-minute drive from my hometown of Mount Carmel, Illinios to Vincennes, Indiana. It was an easy enough drive, straight up Illinois Route One and then in you felt adventurous, you would head east at Saint Francesville, Illinois to drive over the always terrifying, single-lane, Wabash Cannonball Bridge to cross into rural Indiana, before making the quick ten-minute trek into downtown Vincennes, home of Vincennes University.
VU and the House Party
Admittedly, I was pretty sheltered. I didn't go to a lot of parties or things like that. I spent most of my time with my car or in my room listening to music. I was a bit of an anti-social outcast. However, in my teens, I did attend one (and only one) house party and it was in Vincennes. In what I am certain now had to have been a rental house, it was full of teens and early twenty-something Vincennes University students.
More Than a House Party
I recently had a friend of mine ask me, "do you remember when White Zombie played in a backyard in Vincennes?" and I had no idea what he was talking about. That's when he whipped out his phone and to be honest if there weren't video, I'm not sure I would have believed him.
MTV & White Zombie in Vincennes, Indiana
Now, I have absolutely zero clue how I did not know that this happened and I am more than a little disappointed that I wasn't there. On October 21, 1995, MTV set up an entire stage in the backyard of a house in Vincennes, Indiana for the winner of their Invade Your Space contest, Brandon Collins, and White Zombie took the stage. Watch the video below to see the performance.
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