Big Top Circus Punks

In our opinion, parades don't come around often enough. But when they do, there's that entire cleanup of crap such as ticker tape and horseapples. So what to do if you want all of the fun and bluster, but none of the mess?

If you're Chicago composer Mark Messing, you call up 29 of your closest musician friends, form a marching band, and call it Mucca Pazza. Part Balkan brass bombast, part New Orleans second line revelry, and part band geek freakout, Mucca Pazza (Italian for "mad cow") is the band that might have only existed in the heads of Tim Burton and Danny Elfman had Messing not convened it. Costumed in mismatched marching band regalia, the group has spent the past four years stomping from the street corners of Chicago to the vaunted stage of the rebooted Lollapalooza like a gaggle of alternate universe Sgt. Peppers, all while blaring a hair-raising array of covers and original compositions.

Fri., Oct. 10, 9 p.m., 2008
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Jose Gonzalez