Concert Reviews

Review: Atmosphere at Red Rocks, 8/19/11

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By the time Atmosphere took the stage, the rain was in full-on monsoon mode. But it was perfect. Slug rocks a stage like a championship boxer in a ring. And his energy is contagious. His vocals are crisp and clean, and his songs have become more like anthems than just tracks on a CD. Selling out Red Rocks in the moments leading up to your show is huge, especially since any seasoned Atmosphere fan can recall memories of sweaty packed rooms and the unity of hating "Lucy" sitting thick in a cloud of smoke above our heads.

Slug's catalogue of tracks predates some of the younger fans, but that doesn't mean they don't know and love every line he spits. Tracks like "Always Coming Back Home to You," from 2003's Seven's Travels got the acoustic touch, while tracks like "Shoulda Known" from When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint that Shit Gold featured Stevie Wonder-esque synthesizers and gave a glimpse into the darker side of Slug's relationship dealings.

Regardless of the rain, every single person was moving for the show. Slug has a hypnotizing talent, from his wordplay to his freestyle skills, adding "Colorado" to his rhymes at any point he could, to his ad-libs on cuts like "Hockey Hair," instrumental during the encore, which he closed with the line, "like what the fuck did you expect -- I rap," and giving the latter part of the verse to the rain soaked Colorado crowd.

Click through to read about the other acts on the bill

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Britt Chester is a writer and video producer living in Denver, Colorado. He's covered breaking news, music, arts and cannabis for Westword since 2010. His work has appeared in GQ Magazine, Village Voice, YES! Weekly, Inman News and the Winston-Salem Journal. He likes running, cycling, and interviewing people.
Contact: Britt Chester