Music News

Critic's Choice

Rave on the Rocks, the multi-act electronic music fest, dances its way through Red Rocks on August 16 and 17, with a host of dance music's freshest young acts. This year's lineup features Crystal Method, back from the dead with its sophomore followup to 1997's underground hit Vegas. Other performers include the brand new breaks-and-beats act Überzone and the trippy Rabbit in the Moon as well as former Denver resident DJ Keoki, drum-and-bass pioneer Roni Size and DJ Dynamite. The half DJ/half live-music event, set inside the sculpted sandstone concert bowl outside Morrison, has quickly become one of the international dance community's more dramatic excursions. Although this year's lineup lacks the superstar status of a Fatboy Slim, it does have a star in Crystal Method: The act had more than its share of national media exposure in 1997 and 1998 when the Left Coast pair was ubiquitous on MTV and did one-off performances for designer showcases in Italy. Crystal Method will be using its performance to unveil tracks from its new Tweekend album, released July 31 on Outpost Recordings/Geffen Records. DJ Swamp, Stone Temple Pilots' frontman Scott Weiland, Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello and Jon Brion, who produced the unit's first full-length, all contribute to the release, building the industrial techno of the first record into a broader, louder experience. Where Vegas banged, Tweekend practically throbs while maintaining a firm hold on all rhythm beds, breakdowns and dirty synth washes. The acoustic shell of Red Rocks ought to show off Crystal Method's refortified sound to a T.
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Kelly Lemieux