Let the Bodies Hit the Floor:
Drowning Pool Live from Iraq
by Michele Christopher

The Safety Officer took the stage and admonished the crowd, telling them that the USO wanted to make this a very safe, and fun event. Because they wanted the event to be fun, the Safety Officer informed the crowd that Command wanted to slacken the rules just a little bit. Soldiers were told they could bend the rules, but not break them. As such, moshing would be allowed, so long as there were no attempts to injure anyone and crowd surfing as well was within the approved limits of what would be tolerated, so long as there were no bodies being tossed or thrown rather than carried aloft.

Following a one minute Moment of Silence in tribute to the victims of September 11th, Drowning Pool rocked LSA Anaconda. From the first verses of "Sinner", the crowd took advantage of the loosened rules as Ryan McCombs tore his throat open straining to sing through the dust and dry air.

Drowning Pool shook the former Iraqi sports stadium with songs like "Tear Away," "Reminded," and a few previously unreleased songs, such as one dedicated to the Soldiers themselves. The band wants the American people to see what they see, so you might hear the tribute song on the next album. The unreleased songs are also from the upcoming album, so America's Servicemen and women watching the USO concerts are getting a sneak peak at what I will readily admit is some damn fine music.

From a cover of Pantera's "Cowboys from Hell" to one of McComb's old SOil tunes, "Halo," the band kept the bodies surfing and slamming among the soldiers and airmen wedged to the front of the crowd. I only noticed a few nasty falls, and almost without exception the soldiers and airmen, men and women alike got back up and rode the waves of the crowd once again.

Ryan McCombs dedicated "Tear Away" to Drowning Pool's late frontman Dave Williams, asking the crowd to sing along as loud as they could to make sure that Dave could hear, and be here at Anaconda for the show.

Through drowningpool4a.jpgout the show McCombs, or Mike Luce (drummer), would stop between songs to thank the troops, express their gratitude at being allowed to come to Iraq to play, or comment on the absolute lack of humidity. At one point McCombs stopped between songs to lament the pain in his throat from chewing on dust and dry air all night. "What did you guys do with the moisture? I guess you soldiers don't want it, so you said 'Screw the moisture. I don't need it!'"

Finally, as the show was winding down, McCombs told the soldiers that he'd like to take a moment to get into the foxholes with them. He then began to whisper, "Let the bodies hit the floor. Let the bodies hit the flooor."

And from there the soldiers and airmen went wild.

Drowning Pool finished the set with "Bodies," a song performed almost as loudly in the audience as the sound the band produced. The song created a truly memorable moment in the evening.

Drowning Pool
wrapped up by circulating autographed photos of the band on a glossy flyer indicating the concert here at Camp Anaconda. The flyers went out as part of a meet and greet (in which everyone in attendance who wanted to take the time could get some face time with the band).

Tonight was truly a night to remember here in Iraq. Made possible by the generous contribution of time, and the band's sincere thanks to the men and women of the Armed Forces. Drowning Pool demonstrated that they have nothing but the deepest respect for the American military.

As a side note: Cover for the show was provided by a highly skilled sniper who took up a defensive position where he could best put down any efforts of the enemy to provide fireworks that might liven up the show in any kind of negative light. It was the first time in my life that I suspected the armed security at the concert really meant business.

Drowning Pool - Bodies

Dave works in Iraq and writes daily at Dave's Not Here. Man.

This has been a reader contribution. If you would like to submit something for publication here at FTTW, please email your story to submissions@fasterthantheworld.com


wow thats pretty damn cool. Thanks Dave!


fucking awesome. i'm so glad this posted here. thanks, dave.

now to find that mp3...


that's fucking cool


Man. That was awesome. We never got anyone that cool to come see us in Afghanistan when I was there. Drowning Pool would have been amazing.


Thanks for sharing such a cooooool story!


The show was just amazing. My throat still hurts from choking on the dust while chanting out lyrics from the audience.


I would just like to say, that is AWESOME and I would also like to express my respect and gratitude to you, Dave, as well.

That is a great story.


Yeah, thanks a lot Dave, nice one.


Thanks much Dave and thanks for bein' over there. Hopefully, you'll be gone when I'm there next year at this time.

And yes, for those of you who kinda know me, I AM too old for this shite, but the bastages won't let me retire yet.


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