Re:creation Red Rocks was a night of magic. As the winds picked up and a storm built over the Denver skyline, a star-studded lineup of musicians, headlined by jamtronica outfit Papadosio, had the packed crowd dancing all night at the legendary venue. Funky sets from Supersillyus, Eliot Lipp, and Desert Dwellers got the evening started while the sun was still in the sky.
At sunset, SunSquabi took the stage as flashes of lightning began to decorate the horizon. The three-piece native Colorado band really got the party going with blazing electrofunk jams. Guitarist Kevin Donohue and bassist Josh Fairman alternated between setting beats and loops and laying down funky guitar and bass lines. Drummer Chris Anderson anchored the band and carried them through their explosive jams. The highlight of Sunsquabi’s set was when Turbo Suit saxophonist Nick Gerlach joined them for some incredible jams. The crowd caught Gerlach’s infectious energy instantly, jumping up and down and screaming while Gerlach led the band through some of the funkiest jams of the night. You can check out a pro-shot video of Sunsquabi’s full performance from Saturday below!
SunSquabi at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, 5/6/2017
As soon as their set came to a close, An-Ten-Nae came out and dropped a groovy DJ set. Almost no one in the crowd sat during the Oakland DJ’s first performance at Red Rocks. He was definitely excited to “pop his Red Rocks cherry,” as he put it on Twitter earlier in the day. The entire night was graced with the incredibly talented artists Alex and Allyson Grey, who crafted beautiful paintings alongside the bands as they played. After the pair said a few words of thanks to the crowd, the audience was ready for the headlining act of Papadosio.
Papadosio came to the stage as night fell on the amphitheater. The moon glowed through the cloudy night and strong winds swayed the trees along the sides of the stands, and, luckily, the rain never came. Papadosio started out slowly with Anthony Thogmartin playing a beautiful melodic guitar riff before diving into a groovy “New Love.” The descending guitar riff instantly put the audience into a happy trance as the beautiful Denver city lights glowed on the horizon.
Papadosio’s music is all over the place in a very good way. After their groovy first jam, keys player Sam Brouse picked up an acoustic guitar and led the band through “Big Smile,” their first lyrical song of the night. The jazzy chord progression built into a rocking keyboard solo from Billy Brouse before going back into the world of electronic music and finishing the “New Love” jam. The band travels through different genres so seamlessly, playing slowed down acoustic jams into distorted rock n’ roll guitar solos into full on jamtronica music.
Sam and Billy Brouse sat on the keys elevated on a stage along with bassist Rob Mconnel, while drummer Mike Healy and guitarist Anthony Thogmartin played down below. The screen behind the band displayed the beautiful and trippy visuals from Jonathan Singer based off sixteen works handpicked by Alex and Allyson Grey. “Oblivion” into “Each and Every Wave” may have provided the rowdiest jam of the night. The crowd went crazy at the peak of the jam, especially the man dressed in a full body shark costume who couldn’t get enough of the groove. After a tight “Vactrollio” performance, the group descended into a long jam sequence of “Improbability Blotter” through “Drift” back into “Improbability Blotter” that featured some of the best improvisation of the night. The crowd got to enter into one final trance as Papadosio played “The Bionic Man Meets His Past” for an encore to end a beautiful night of art and music.
The energy of the crowd was incredible the entire night, as some people boogied through all of the amazing bands seemingly without stopping. Papadosio’s second time headlining Red Rocks was a complete success. The band and the residents of Colorado can’t wait for their return. Check out photos from the epic Red Rocks blowout that was this year’s Re:Creation below, courtesy of Brittany Teuber.