Following their sold out Red Rocks show with Lotus in September [read the review here], Papadosio made a triumphant return to Colorado at the Fillmore Auditorium on the auspicious date of 12/13/14.
Papadosio has had quite a fervent intention to help people evolve and respect each other and the planet, from their album and song titles, to Anthony Thogmartin’s side project EarthCry, and grassroots efforts by the band to make the world a better place beyond just playing music. Their new concert series Earth Night holds that same spirit of our collective evolution. Their playing, the energy in the venue, and the stylistic variation offered by the openers helped shows just how far the band has come in the past several years, and the untapped potential that exists for them down the road.
San Francisco native Eskmo kicked off the night with his eclectic and transcendental take on electronic music. His sets are always fun to watch as he uses live samples of physical objects he has with him on stage anything from a soda can opening to creative orchestration of a coat hanger, and also sings live with far out lyrics and vocal effects complimenting the wobbly, ultra trippy sonic canvas that he provides.
After Eskmo, the lineup took an abrupt, yet tasteful turn with the roots/folk serenade of Rising Appalachia. Their folky sound has stumbled upon a welcome niche in our festival scene, which is so saturated with electronic production. Having a group like Rising Appalachia opening for a electronically-influenced group like Dosio offered a broader auditory palette than most other shows where the standard one or two person producer team opens up.
Rising Appalachia’s music is a mix of European Folk Music, Appalachian Music, and West African Music. While many of these styles have found their influence in electronic music as well, it’s great to see such a creative take on completely acoustic music. Their live show is quite energetic, and the band even features live painters on stage.
Rising Appalachia’s slow acoustic jams get the crowd ready for the pumping beats of Jamtronica when Papadosio took the stage. It’s great to see these guys playing a nearly full Fillmore, with a top-notch light rig blowing the roof off the place, when, just four years ago they were playing Quixotes (a much smaller venue in town). Their set offered a varied selection of Papadosio favorites from throughout the years, accompanied by a stellar light show.
My personal highlight was an extremely epic and emotive cover of “Dayvan Cowboy” by Boards of Canada. Sadly, BOC is a group that never plays live, so it was a real treat to hear their incredible compositions bursting at the seams with live energy. Other highlights from the night include the great Dosio track “We Are Water,” along with some other oldies from their first album, “Night Visions” and “All I Knew,” which haven’t been in rotation as much recently.
Papadosio has definitely carved out something special for themselves, and it’s a pleasure to watch their meteoric rise to the forefront of the Jamtronica scene. At this rate, this band is well on their way to earning a coveted spot as one of the top bands on the festival circuit. If you get a chance to see one of these Earth Night shows, definitely seize the opportunity!