By Daniel Paiz
A somewhat rainy Saturday evening in Colorado did nothing to dampen the Red Hot Chili Peppers give it ALL away in Denver. Picturesque moments of Flea shredding his bass and John Frusciante snarling into the microphone were seared into the audience’s collective memory. Prior to the occasional sheets of rain, openers Thundercat and HAIM set the tone and got the crowds warmed up for collectively losing themselves as RHCP stepped onto the stage. It all felt like a musically tremendous blur.
What’s Your Story, openers
The audience did not seem all that familiar with Thundercat, and he seemed to sense that from the start. However, being the gifted musical technician he is, that was no barrier to some jazzy and funky riffs. Soon after Thundercat and his equally talented band of musicians dazzled and mesmerized the audience, more and more folks seemed taken with the tunes. Jazzy, funky, and flat-out fun songs like “Them Changes” and “Dragonball Durag” likely did the trick.
HAIM was the only group I was unfamiliar with, but they were definitely the more popular of the two openers. The appropriately stadium Rock-ish opening song turned up the energy level across sections, but each song after that seemed to mellow and not quite hit that same dial of excitement. The group was clearly very talented at each part played, but something about them for me didn’t really do a whole lot. Perhaps a deeper dive later will help with that.
This audience frankly didn’t need the openers with how excited they were for RHCP.
Give It Away Now
With all due respect to all of the other Rock bands that have played Broncos Stadium since I started there, RHCP has them all beat. That’s not to take away from Metallica, Guns N Roses, or The Rolling Stones, amongst others. Rather, it’s to say that while those acts were lots of fun and full of talent, they didn’t quite do what Flea and company did.
What made Saturday’s night show so memorable was not simply the music gifted to listeners. No, it was something more than that. Anthony Kiedis, Flea, Chad Smith, and John Frusciante each played their own roles to a tee. However, they then synched with each other as a team unit and made each other sound better. It’s part of an idea I keep running into, which is that simple is deceivingly hard. Each member simultaneously nailed their individual parts and raised each other up.
Every track you can think of when it comes to the Red Hot Chili Peppers roared from the stage. “Scar Tissue” to “Snow (Hey Oh)”. “Dani California” was one of the first tracks to start the night, and “By The Way” closed the night during the short encore. Fans sang back to the band for every song, with several songs towards the beginning of the set having sheets of rain cover the crowd. It felt appropriate for this band. It was a bit grimy and dirty, and this band gives you that kind of energy.
Not too sure what else to wax poetic about when it comes to the Chili Peppers that are Red Hot. This quartet of musical buds jammed out through multiple rain showers with no visible hesitation. They announced their double album dropping this Fall, the first time the news broke about this (in Denver, I might add). They smartly have Thundercat and HAIM as openers, two groups that between them should appeal to a majority of music fans out there. A rainy night in Denver ended with satisfied exhaustion from all involved.
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