Rock Afire Explosion Love In This Club * The Rock, Love In This Club

What follows is the funniest thing you will see all week — perhaps all year. It will make you laugh out loud, guaranteed, so long as your sense of humor is as warped as mine. If you are reading this at work (shame, shame), I recommend waiting until you get home to press play … unless you don't mind attracting the attention of your cubical mates and boss, and they won't think it's weird that you're watching a video with an animatronic gorilla.

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Ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, “Love in This Club” performed by The Rock-afire Explosion:

here in Jackson back in the '80s, but we had one in my hometown, and I definitely remember this pneumatic nightmare. Every Showbiz Pizza had a

After I stumbled across The Rock-afire Explosion's Usher cover, I was delighted to discover it was just one of many online videos of pizzeria house bands performing contemporary hits. It took me a bit of Internet investigating to figure out who the heck was behind this. I still don't know much about the “Chris Thrash” that programmed “Love in This Club,” but the YouTube channel that hosts all his work is operated by none other than Aaron Fetcher, owner of Creative Engineering, the Orlando company that produced all the Rock-afire robots.

In addition to the YouTube channel, there's a Web site called ProgramBlue that hosts all the sanctioned videos. You also can visit this Web page for instructions on how you can bid to have your requested song programmed, which is evidently how “Love in This Club” came about.

Here are a few more highlights:

“Land of Confusion”

The Rock-afire Explosion aren't all about club grooves. They can rock pretty hard, too, as demonstrated by this video set to Disturbed's version of the Genesis classic … which is oddly reminiscent of the original's creepy puppet video.

“Electric Feel”

Programmed by Fecher himself, evidently so that MGMT can use The Rock-afire Explosion for the song's official video. Man, those guys are cool. First an infinite dolphin explosion, now this.

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“Hips Don't Lie”

Rather than simply lip synching to Shakira, for this one Fetcher got the original Rock-afire Explosion gang back together to record their own version like they did in the Showbiz Pizza days. All except for Burt Wilson, voice of Fatz Geronimo, who is evidently too busy with the “Monsters in the Morning” show on WTKS-FM.

UPDATE:

Sorry, folks, the YouTube videos have been taken down. Perhaps all the publicity generated by my blog brought this to the attention of Disturbed's lawyers. You can still find some videos over at ProgramBlue, but not the three singled out above. Even the official MGMT video with the Rock-Afire cameo has been mysteriously erased from existence across cyberspace. Tragic.

UPDATED UPDATE

The MGMT video, complete with Rock-afire Explostion cameo, has reappeared, but those jerks at Sony/BMG have asked YouTube to disable the embedding feature. Man, I'll never understand why record labels think that's a good idea. Hey, Bertelsmann, that's how you generate buzz and keep the blogosphere from posting a bunch of comments about how you guys “just don't get it!” Oh well, click here to watch the video.

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