Juggalos attempt to rebound from a rocky year with their annual Gathering

From the July 17, 2014 edition

It’s been a miserable year for the Insane Clown Posse’s paint-smeared fan base, commonly referred to as the Juggalos.

Early in 2014 the Gathering of the Juggalos, an annual music festival/Faygo-coated free-for-all helmed by the clownish crew, was barred from setting up shop at Crybaby Campground in Kaiser, Missouri, with owners citing the backlash from local residents. Then earlier this month a District Court dismissed a lawsuit by the rap duo and its fans brought on by a 2011 FBI report that characterized Juggalos as a gang.

Under these auspicious skies, ICP’s Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope bring the Gathering, now in its 15th year, to nearby Legend Valley for the first time. The four-day affair includes comedy performances, wrestling shows and, of course, carnival rides (though with all the carnies in attendance its uncertain who will operate them), as well as a steady stream of musical performances culled from the worlds of hip-hop (Hopsin, Dizzy Wright) and hard rock (Biohazard, Cannibal Corpse). In past years the fest has landed some surprisingly killer bookings — Danny Brown, Ice Cube and Andrew W.K. have all made appearances — but this year’s lineup seems fairly uninspired by comparison, perhaps due to organizers being forced to focus attentions elsewhere.