Thievery Corporation/Ghostland Observatory At Red Rocks, August 14, 2011: Review


 Robert Castro

Sunday night capped off a weekend of awesome music as I headed out to Red Rock for Thievery Corporation and Ghostland Observatory.  Opening was Ghostland Observatory, whom I have seen on numerous occasions here in Denver and in their own backyard of Austin, Texas.  This was the first time I have seen them at Red Rocks and I would safely say that although they manage to put on a pretty amazing light show, for some reason this show seemed scaled down.  They played in what seemed the dark the whole time making it hard to capture their well-established stage antics.  Headed by the dynamic duo of Thomas Turner and Aaron Behrens, the electro-dance duo bring a sound that combines synth, electronica, and precise drum beats with a hint of rock.

Thomas Turner and Aaron Behrens of Ghostland Observatory electrify the Red Rocks crowd (photo credit Robert Castro)
Aaron Behrens commands the stage much like the lovechild of Mick Jagger and Freddie Mercury.  Thomas Turner is at the controls of sound command, pulling a variety of duties including keyboards, synths and live drumming.  They managed to win the crowd over with hits spanning from all three of their studio albums including crowd favorites “Sad, Sad, City”, “Heavy Heart”, and “Midnight Voyage”.  In order to really get the true Ghostland Observatory vibe I would say that they are better fit for a smaller intimate venue, instead of the monstrosity known as Red Rocks.   Not to take anything away from their performance the crowd managed to feed off them despite the drizzling showers that only made the laser show much enjoyable.

Thievery Corporation (photo credit Robert Castro)
Next up was Thievery Corporation, gone are the days when the group consisted of just Rob Garza and Eric Hilton.  They have now become a full-fledged headlining act with a full production and an array of complementing musicians.  It’s hard to group Thievery Corporation in to a specific genre.  They manage to pull off an array of sounds including, reggae, trance, downtempo, dub, boss nova, with a hint of Indian classical.  Making this group as unique as they come, they incorporate a stage set reminiscent of a ultra-swanky VIP lounge with everything from plush couches to hanging chandeliers.

Thievery Corporation (photo credit Robert Castro)

Thievery Corporation (photo credit Robert Castro)

The crowd consumed every ounce of musical bliss provided on this crisp and chilly evening.  Dancing and grooving from opening song “Web of Deception”, and  “Lebanese Blonde” until the wee hours of a double encore consisting of  “The Richest Man In Babylon”, and “Marching The Hate Machines”.   Thievery Corporation’s carousel of revolving lead singers provided the soundtrack to an incredible evening catering to just about every single person of the sold out crowd.