Adventure Club on The Rocks: Review

Adventure Club @ Red Rocks Amphitheater Show Review    

      I would be lying to you if I said that last night was the greatest night of my life, but it was indubitably close to perfection. The parched red rock was heavily hydrated from the time doors opened until the last song was played. There was something about the amphitheater being doused in torrential downpour that left an ethereal sense in the air; huddled together, soaking wet, and drenched in excitement; the entire audience was on cloud nine. By the end of the night Adventure Club stole the hearts of everyone in attendance, but it’s safe to say the evening wouldn’t have been complete without openers ETC! ETC!, Minnesota and Keys n’ Krates that warmed up Red Rocks’s sound system before AC’s takeover.

     The screeching brakes of Cheeba Hut’s Bus 2 Show bus had me swiftly gathering my things and making my way out the doors, carrying momentum from the funky school bus’s wake. The customary pregame in the lots below the amphitheater was nowhere to be found. I immediately began making the trek up the seemingly never-ending stairs to the top, where I found out why everyone had dismissed the routine pregame. ETC! ETC! had people twonking left and right. As I scoped out a good spot from afar I was in awe at how much the crowd was eating up trap god ETC! ETC!’s (Jose Guerroero) energy. He paired dance-y moombahton beats with the down right dirty trap drops he’s respected for. Fist pumps were in full effect the entirety of his set and cleverly led into Minnesota’s equally as dance-y dub.  

     He took the decks faster than expected, leaving me no time to snag a pizza from concessions (Red Rocks has bomb pizza). Christian Bauhofer, the man rocking the red Minnesota jersey promptly made a presence on stage. My thirst for dub was about to be super-quenched. I don’t think anyone was fully prepared for the wrath that Minnesota had over the rocks. Of course popular tracks of his like “Stardust” and “Bloom” were dropped, but there was something different about seeing Minnesota live from simply listening to his songs at home, and no, it wasn’t just the volume. It became clear that Bauhofer has a gift in reading his audience and giving them just what they need. His set oozed originality and flowed with ease from song to song, making them fit seamlessly together. I found myself sporting the gritty bass-face as Minnesota trembled the rock with dub. The crowd was beyond pleased and ready for more as his set came to a close. Next to carry on the electronic dance vibe was Keys n’ Krates.

     Not your average EDM producers, Keys n’ Krates is a three man contribution. Hailing from the maple-leaf land of Canada like Adventure Club, Adam Tune (drummer), David Matisse (synthesizer/keyboardist), and Jr. Flo (turntablist) have overturned the stereotype that all electronic music is one measly DJ on decks. Thank God for the giant big screens on either side of the stage for shedding light on the immense amount of talent each member contributes to their production. I was getting slightly dizzy from watching Jr. Flo’s hand spin into a blur on the turntables. Alas, A DJ that actually spins vinyl and doesn’t simply rely on a CDJ! It was humbling to observe the motions of his scratching and watch as the audience ate up every moment of it. Major Keys n’ Krates aficionados were present amung the sea of people. An uproar emerged from the crowd as the trio struck the beginning notes of “Dum Dee Dum”. Following up with a number of their classics while still mixing in a good amount of free-flow made Keys n’ Krates the peak of my night… At least so far.

     When the clock struck 10:50PM, the two main men of the night had seized the stage that had long been awaiting them. Pandemonium surged from the front row to the very last upper row between the giant rocks that enshrouded the amphitheater. Adventure Club instantly raised the energy to a new high- those guys sure have a party-animal vibe. As the microphone was set down and Leighton James hopped down from the table, the chaos ensued. Throughout their set, which went over the new time restrictions that Red Rocks implemented, James and Srigly showed Colorado just what was good. Everyone surrounding me was in his or her dance element. Besides the music, the unique dance moves that the people of Red Rocks possess are highly entertaining. Expressions radiating pure bliss spread across the faces in the audience during AC classics like “Gold” and “Need Your Heart” as well as newer hits, “Fade” and their mix of MS MR “Hurricane”.

     To throw off anyone who was getting too settled into their set, the duo showed off their take on Oasis’s “Wonderwall” with a brutally earth rattling drop- bet Oasis never saw that coming! As 12AM crept closer I was wondering how much the over-time charges are for playing passed the midnight hour but quickly realized that whatever the cost was, it was petty cash to Adventure Club. Luckily the fans that stuck it out through the relentless rain were gifted with 20 extra minutes of AC christening. Closing with their infamous Flight Facilities mix “Crave You” was the perfect ending to a glorious evening amongst the friendly and almost familiar faces that were in attendance. It was a tease to those who were at Global Dub Festival 2014 who were waiting for the transition from “Crave You” to Lana Del Rey’s “Summertime Sadness”. Even though it never came and the breaking down of the equipment began, it’s safe to say that everyone left the rocks feeling fully satisfied and saturated with their Friday night.

Written by: Melanie Gordon

Photography: Emily Carlson