As the crew rolled into the Red Rocks parking lot for a little pre-game action our expectation were set very high. As we slugged back drinks in the parking lot we could hear the immense sounds that were reverting off the infamous Red Rock’s monoliths. Friday night had a lot in store for us, it was our first time seeing many of the artists and we were pumped just to be beginning our three night music binge at Red Rocks.
The first set we were able to catch was Krewella’s. The Chicago trio certainly knows how to hold it down on stage despite being new comers to the game. Krewella unfortunately had to play on the second stage which isn’t nearly the size of main stage, but they made it sound as if main stage had nothing to compare. As they took the stage, the crowd started pushing to the front and the bass started vibrating everything around us. The crowd was jumping around so much you could actually feel the cement floor of red rocks moving (which was a bit scary). Krewella threw down all their hits, “Killin’ It”, “Rise & Fall”, their “Fire Hive” remix and more from the new EP! I’ll just leave you with one word of advice; next time Krewella is in your town…go see them!
As I look back on the night, myself along with many others considered Hardwell to have stolen the show. This was the first time many of us had seen Hardwell and we were all impressed to say the least. If you have ever been to Red Rocks Amphitheater, you know of the huge sound that comes from the natural acoustics. Well, Hardwell put this sound to use…in a BIG way. What was thought to be a mainly house show turned into a bass-infused set with the perfect mix of every genre. At the point we were all smiles because of Hardwells incredible performance and not to mention, Global’s light set up certainly set the perfect mood for the set.
Without a doubt, Knife Party was the one artist most people came to Red Rocks to see. It was their first Colorado appearance and they capitalized on this in a big way. Knife Party came out guns-a-blazin’ with track after track of bass madness. It was truly a treat to see such an epic duo perform in the best venue in North America. During the hour and a half that Knife Party captured us, they played out more VIP mixes than I have ever heard from one artist. This was an awesome surprise because everyone knew and loved the original mixes but Knife Party threw in something fresh to get everyone stoked. Out of all the VIP mixes, the “Internet Friends VIP” was the most increible track I had heard all night.
As many people probably know already, Swedish House Mafia is breaking up in the very near future. The trio has decided to part ways, but after seeing Steve Angello, it reassured me that the three individuals will have no problem selling out venues on their own. As soon as Steve Angello came on stage the crowd erupted and the sound seemed to be turned up way higher than previous sets (this was a good thing). Before long, Steve Angello began to play out every house and electro anthem known to man. Steve Angello’s set was the perfect cap to the night, and eventually we decided to call it a night so we would have some rest before the onslaught of the next couple days!
I won’t lie, most of us at The Dankles are pretty biased towards bass music, so Day 2 was sort of new and exciting for us. With a lineup of mostly house, trance and electro music for the night, I was looking forward to seeing some new artists. We arrived a little late but got to catch Nadia Ali’s set. She threw it down with lots of different and diverse music along with tracks that everyone knows and loves. For her closer she came out and sang to the roaring Red Rocks crowd!
I’ve heard many things about Morgan Page prior to his performance, and almost everything I’ve heard has been positive. After listening to some of his music before the event I was still debating whether I was really going to dig it or not. Well, after about 10 minutes into Morgan Page’s set I was down! Morgan Page came out and threw a stellar performance, playing our lots of great house tracks, throwing in some heavy electro and showing us what a good well-rounded set sounds like. Morgan finished up his set at Red Rocks and rushed to Beta for a surprise set! From what I heard, Morgan Page killed in downtown Denver as well!
Wolfgang Gartner was my number one pick for Day 2 and he did not disappoint. While all of the other artists were great, Wolfgang is one of my favorites. His live shows never disappoint and he can play to almost any crowd. Wolfgang’s performance was awesome, he threw in classics like “Illmerica” and tossed in some newer stuff like his “Paddling Out” remix. Then Wolfgang showed us his new material like, “Red Line”, “Girl on Boy” and “Menage A Trios”. Without a doubt Wolfgang Gartner was my favorite performance of the night and I know that many other said the same!
At around 12:30am, Above & Beyond took the stage. Their pre-set visuals interacted with the Red Rocks crowd asking, “How are you doing tonight Red Rocks?” To this question was a roaring reply of positive energy. Above and Beyond opened with a heavy electro tune which set the tone for their set. Soon they dropped into some trance tunes to give everyone in the crowd a little break, but the energy was still high! Overall, Above & Beyond was killing it and everyone at Red Rocks truly appreciated their performance! Day 2 was a wrap and we were beat, but the idea of having a stacked Day 3 kept us in high hopes and all smiles!
I don’t know if Global could have started Day 3 any better off than with a fresh dose of Figure. This being my third time seeing Figure, let me tell you, I was more then just a little pumped to see him at the one and only Red Rocks. Like always, Figure threw down a filthy set. Throwing in some of the old with the new, playing tracks like Cut Throat, Dominate, This is Halloween, Mercy, The Last Dawn, and much more.
::Kill The Noise::
Wading through the path of destruction left behind by Figure we trudged up to the top of Red Rocks to catch Kill the Noise. Having heard nothing but good things about his live performance we waltzed up to an already rowdy crowd as we dove on in. In the next hour KTN was dropping everything from raunchy metal infused bass lines (possibly an Emmure remix?) to spicy latin moombah beats that kept everyone going wild. He even dropped a few tracks off his latest release, the ‘Roots Remixed EP’ that we just unveiled to us on Tuesday. If you have yet to check that release be sure to check peep a few of the tracks below.
If you’ve seen Adventure Club before then you know the debauchery that they throw down for each show. Red Rocks was the fourth time I’ve seen the eccentric duo and they didn’t hold back for their first appearance at Red Rocks. They threw down every tune and genre known to man. From all of their original to remixes and even some trap (the new Skrillex trap mix) was thrown into the mix. All I have to say is that these two like to party and know how to create a party with ease. If I were you, I would snag a ticket to their next show! Don’t miss out!
Unfortunatly, Crizzly was playing the second stage at the top of Red Rocks. This stage is small in comparison to main stage, but it still bumped louder than you’d believe. I spent my time casually going from main stage to the top stage just so I could hear a few Crizzly tracks. I heard him drop his infamous “Hard In The Paint” remix along with his new track with AFK. I can only hope to Crizzly in action once again so I can truly judge his shows!
What can be said about Dillon Francis that hasn’t been said before? The man is a genius, he is laid-back and DGAF, literally. During his set he dropped a tune and states, “This is the best song you’ll hear all night!”. Dillon Francis brought the moombahton to the rocks and did it in style. He played out all the classics and got people grooving’ like they never had before (especially myself). If you didn’t get to catch Dillon this time around, he will be playing with Big Gigantic this September at Red Rocks once again!
::Zeds Dead w/ Omar Linx::
While I saw so many amazing sets on the bass-heavy third day of Global, I would have to say that Zeds Dead were far and away my favorite of the night. This is partly because I had never seen Zeds Dead before (I don’t know how I let that happen), but mostly because the energy at Red Rocks during the Canadian duo was unlike anything I had ever seen. They ran through all of their hits, including cuts off their new EP with Omar Linx (Cowboy was definitely one of the best tracks of the night), tons of crazy remixes, and even dropped “Undah Yuh Skirt” which had the crowd moving like crazy. Zeds Dead kept saying how this was a really special night, and it was incredibly clear to see- especially when everyone from the front to the back row put their Z’s in the air.
After seeing all the acts from Sunday, it got to be 11:15 and I didn’t know how much energy I had left after going nuts for five hours straight. Then Excision came on and made it impossible not to go all out for the entirety of his set, with not a second of downtime in the whole hour and fifteen minutes. While most dubstep acts have a build up that leads into a huge drop, Excision instead has heavy bass that just drops into more heavy bass. He threw incredibly unique samples out of nowhere that kept the crowd entertained, including an awesome “Down With the Sickness” drop and a huge remix of Rage Against the Machine’s “Bulls on Parade.” Needless to say we drove home without any music on because our eardrums were so worn out with the epicness that Excision threw down in his loud and fun set.
After all was said and done, Red Rocks packed in 23,000 people over the weekend with a sold-out Saturday night. MTV’s Made shot an episode of their show on Friday and Saturday night. Saturday night was live broadcasted on on AXS TV. I’d say Global Dance Festival was a huge success! We want to give a BIG thank you to Global Dance Festival and Triad Dragons for putting on yet another amazing event! We are stoked to have been apart of the 10th Anniversery Global Dance Festival!
All photos courtesy of Trevor Jacques/Mile High Live!