I still have mixed feelings about the 1st Bank Center. Their insistence that some people be relegated to the incredibly lame bowl seats (which don’t really let you dance), even when there is plenty of room on the floor, means there is a good chance you can be separated from your friends.
It also requires a party bus if you’re drinking, and Flashtickets is a total scam- charging a $7 fee to sell your ticket, on top of the fees they already charge when you buy your ticket, is a joke, especially when there is no way to sell it outside of their proprietary system.
Also $9 for a beer? Red Rocks doesn’t even charge those prices!
However the staff that works there is friendly and cooperative, the sound and setup is usually pretty good, and whenever I think the 1st Bank Center is bad, I remember the Denver Coliseum. Yikes.
Waldo’s, Rufio’s, Knife Parties, Bonfire’s, Scary Monsters, and Centipede’s were the costumes that made monster mashing appearances. Quite a sight to see (unfortunately we couldn’t get pictures in the crowd because we had to keep our cameras with the 1st Bank Center staff at all times). And since this is Denver, the so-called dubstep capital of the USA, the crowd went ballistic once the two hour battle began. It was especially easy to view the madness in the crowd as they stacked the bowl seats like a Roman arena.
Dueling DJ Sets
It was nice to see Knife Party, whose songs get overplayed by other DJ’s like their lives depended on it, play their own tracks. And even though it was all dubstep, the two hour DJ battle worked well as it alternated between Skrillex and Knife Party’s sound, giving a little bit of variety.
All the hits that everyone wanted to hear from the two blared at high levels- for Knife Party this included Internet Friends, Bonfire, Centipede, and Antidote. For Skrillex, this included Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites, Breakin a Sweat, Bangarang, and Make it Bun Dem. Some mashups and remixes also made an appearance, such as Diplo’s Express Yourself, and even Montel Jordan’s This is How We Do It. The set wasn’t anything incredibly mind blowing, but it was fun, familiar, and just what everyone wanted.
Last year, Skrillex had a mind-blowing setup that utilized projection mapping and an Amon Tobin like light show, but with a twist: the skeletons/headless horsemen projected were actually controlled by a suit with sensors on Skrillex’s body. And considering the insanity that went on at his Red Rocks show this past summer (fire, fireworks, and all), the expectations were, dare I say, monster.
To top last year, these guys totally delivered.
A spooky looking, two story house was setup on the stage- the opening acts, Zane Lowe, Baauer, Kill the Noise, and Tommy Trash, all played from the first floor of the house, but when Knife Party and Skrillex came on, they were adorned to the top floor.
Sitting in the photo pit before the show, I noticed the air compressors, gas lines, and confetti cannons setup on the stage. Yet when the show started and all of them fired off at once, it still scared the living crap out of me.
It was total chaos in there. Fire, confetti, compressed air, strobe lights, lazers, and even FIREWORKS (you read that right, fireworks INSIDE the 1st Bank Center!) EASILY put this show on a Swedish House Mafia level of production.
You have to hand it to Skrillex, who seems to never have the same production twice- yet every time I see him, he goes all out and puts a lot of thought and money into making his shows as big as possible. Love him or hate him, he definitely provides the MOST bang for your buck in terms of the live production. Everyone that was there would agree that it was the most epic Halloween experience you could have.
Apparently, Knife Party agreed:
As Sonny screamed “see you next year!” to round out the show, it sounds like a Skrillex Halloween is going to become a Denver tradition- plan accordingly because this is becoming one of the most insane shows all year.
The lighting in the show made it insanely hard to take pictures. Score 1 for the 1st Bank Center.