"Kocosante" means a lot of things. But the translation this South Florida band is most comfortable with is the Italian "chocolate saint."
You can define them as a "comedy metal band" or even call them "nerdy" like their singer Doctor Shing Ding, AKA Mike Kennedy, does. You can think of them as "Intergalacticpunkfunkdubcore," as is written on their Facebook page.
Whatever angle you take to try to wrap your head around Kocosante is the wrong one. These guys defy definition.
The Broward and Lake Worth-based act has been around for a long while. It even won Miami New Times' 2001 Best Bar Band Reader's Choice award. 2001. That's right.
The cover of their EP Nasty as They Want to Be is an homage to 2 Live Crew's of the same name. The men's heads replace both those of the bodacious babes and Luke and the boys on the original. They've been compared to a "live South Park" and "GWAR without the mess."
Kocosante even call themselves: "South Florida's Most Retarded Band" on Twitter. So we dared to ask frontman Kennedy what makes them the "most retarded"?
"The puppets, our guitarist is funny; we do comedy skits between our songs; we don't mind what anybody says, as long as they have a good time. Every different show, I usually wear some crazy costume, and the guitarist will wear a crazy costume as well, or he plays in his underwear." They have their own creatures at shows, à la GWAR, known as Rasta Monkey, Lil Monster, and MC Lord Vader. They employ a united sense of humor to pen their crazy skits for the stages of places like O'Malley's and Eve.
"We are kind of weird. We're out there," Kennedy says. "But people have a good time and enjoy us."
Needless to say, these guys all love aliens, sci fi, and Star Wars. "Big time." Kennedy admits, "We're nerds." And they really are into cartoons, so much so that they just released a song called "I <3 Cartoons" this month. It was produced by SimpleKill's Jeff Martin, who Kennedy says, "does some of the best music I've heard down here." They put out the song, one-half of an EP, now in anticipation of the upcoming Florida Supercon.
The guys of Kocosante are inspired by P. Funk, Faith No More, and Mr. Bungle. Their guitarist, Shoey, even makes his own pop music under his real name, Matthew James Stacy. He loves Lady Gaga, Demi Lovado, and Taylor Swift. Kennedy adds, "He's also a great metal guitarist."
Of their audience, Kennedy notes that they have more girl fans than guys, "which is surprising, because of how old we are!" But, he tells us, "They're not just fans; they're friends." He calls them "a big Koco family."
They'll be dressing up, "like creepy clowns" for Twisted Horror Circus, to play alongside Toasted Marshmallow Zombies and Half Head, 9 p.m., August 23, at Mickey's Bar, 350 SW 12th Ave., Pompano Beach. Entrance is $5.