Punk rock techies Master Control Program play the Jackalope

Krista Tschetter

Krista Tschetter

Three Sioux Falls computer aficianados in their late 20s by day; budding hipsters by night, Master Control Program are moonlighting as, you guessed it, a rock band. And they’ve given their audiences fair warning … “prepare to get the crap rocked out of you.”

The trio, made up of Al “The Prognosticator” Tunheim on bass and lead “screamer,” Jason “Trig” Reigstad on guitar, and Dusty Roed on drums, played a few sets of “hybrid punk” at the Jackalope Lounge last Saturday night.

The set included a high-energy rendition of Southpark the Movie’s “What Would Brian Boitano Do?” complete with dead-on impressions of Kenny and co. They also tore through the Ramones’ “I Want to be Sedated” and several punk-flavored originals.

Tunheim even performed in his Gateway shirt, where he does tech support during the day.

Before the show, they took a few minutes to talk about TRON, the beauty of an underage audience, and how Dusty Roed’s parents hardly ever miss a show.

“I met these guys when we were all in the Pride (of the Dakotas),” said Tunheim, who’s been playing at the Jackalope for upwards of six years with different bands.

The current Master Control Program line-up has been together for almost 10 months, and have worked up a stage show of quite a few originals in recent months. But they aren’t opposed to do crowd-friendly covers like the aforementioned.

“We thought it was better to flesh it out with mostly covers in the beginning, because we hadn’t played together,” he said.

They’re thinking about recording some of their originals, but mostly because they would feel bad having a web site without some MP3’s for fans to download.

After all, with Tunheim at Gateway, Trig in computer training and Dusty Roed as a technician, they have to stay true to the digitally-savvy.

Hey, even their name is from a movie about a guy who gets stuck in the master control program of a video game called TRON.

“We were sitting on Dusty’s poch and we started talking about the video game (version of the movie) TRON and how we wasted so many quarters in it as kids,” Tunheim said, who admits with a hint of a sarcastic smile that it wasn’t too difficult for them to come up with name.

“Yeah, it’s kind of interesting how we got that name.”

The band has been playing mostly Sioux Falls shows, but did play an 18-and-over show at an indoor skate park in Vermillion, and found out that the younger kids responded well to their free-for-all style.

“The kids, they get into it more,” said

In addition to an upcoming Jackalope show on May 2, the group also has shows booked for April 11 & 25 at Phil’s Pub in Sioux Falls.

As the three talk about upcoming shows, they veer into a discussion about the live music scene in Sioux Falls, hinting that they may be a little more wise than they’re letting on.

As they drop names of local bands they respect, it seems like the regional music scene would do well to have a few more interactive advocates.

But they swear they’re not looking to quit their day jobs.

“Dusty Roed is just hoping to get a groupie,” Trig said.

“It’s not like we’re really trying to make it big,” Tunheim said, as Trig jumped in with a charged “Greatest rock’n’roll band ever!”

These boys just want to have fun.

And maybe just a street cred.

“Our aspiration is to come off-stage and have some teenybopper come up and say, hey, for a bunch of old fogies, you guys rock.”

#1.887187:1970491376.jpg:techies.jpg:Jason Reigstad (left) and Al Tunheim hoot and holler.: