Marching bands have better halftimes than Destiny’s Child. The 2001 NBA Finals saw DC booed out of the Philadelphia Spectrum, though Allen Iverson, as a friend observed, “couldn’t hit the broad side of Beyoncé’s butt with a banjo.” Since then a high school marching band called the Brooklyn Steppers has been whooping Alicia Keys and Usher at their own versions. Beating the Steppers to it, Destiny’s Child kick up Astroturf with “Lose My Breath.” The League of Ruined Knees approves. Yes, Knowles certainly can get some over a 50-yard drum line as the price of majorette boot goes nosebleed. But how about a drums-only bootleg with S Dot? How about lose the diva keyboard and get on MC A.D.E.’s “Bass Mechanic”? Back in ’87, when the Destiny were Sparkle Motion, A.D.E.’s Fort Lauderdale 12-inch was battle ammo for Southeastern marching bands. Tuned into black-college halftime vets like Florida A&M, the Emulator punched brassy, and you could hear the oof of winded cymbals. Fan out! Fan out!
“Stand up,” yell the Ying Yang Twins on “Halftime.” Their keyborg horn section is about as real as OJ’s kneecaps but still jukes the band. It crunk-calls the sousaphone and taps the ghost of late Miami Bass producer Eric “Speakerhead” Griffin, who in ’89 tricked the brass-monkey horns into his sampler and knocked the timpani senseless. Ying Yang go throat-for-note with a trombone slide. Your suspension must have what orthopedic surgeons call “elastoviscosity” to step smurfly with an elephant-sneeze tuba on your back. So by the half, instruments get dropped with the bass. An 808 sine wave on roller skates tears through the drumhead and the beat goes quad commando, the kick hot on the snare’s booty all the way down the sidelines and into the end zone to wiggle it like White Shoes Johnson.