It may have been a Wednesday night, but at the Larimer Lounge it might as well have been a disco-worthy weekend night. Without even going into the strength of the lineup, the fact that the show was presented by both Holy Underground and TheHundred were immediate tip-offs that the night was going to be a party. Over the past six months, TheHundred has been making huge waves in the local house music scene, and rightly so thanks to some amazing parties. This may have been the first Holy Underground show, but judging by what they've got coming down the pipeline, they seem to know exactly what they are doing. Wednesday night featured a solid international act and some of the biggest names in the local scene. When it all came together - it was madness.
The night began with an opening DJ set from Peter Black. He's someone that has put in a lot of work into Denver's scene, both on stage and and in the background, and his qualities as a tastemaker tends to shine through in his sets. Tonight was no exception. Peter Black showed off the versatility of an experienced DJ by heating up the night with some smooth mid-tempo nu-disco tracks, allowing the early crowd to settle in and latch onto the groove as the venue started to fill in. It seems that pacing is becoming a lost art, but not under Peter Black's watch. That's what makes him a great act to see no matter where he is slotted in a lineup. He set the tone early and led the crowd smoothly into the next big local act.
Flashlights took the stage next, an electro/dream-pop duo whose infectiously danceable sound has begun to garner them attention well beyond just this city. Ethan Converse (lead vocals) and Alex Anderson (backing vocals) took their places on the darkened stage, each behind sequencers/controllers that they would use to manipulate their eventual barrage of ethereal dance songs. As their set began with "Glowing Eyes" off Flashlight's first EP, Hidden Behind Trees, the stage went aglow as well. A light mist of fog accentuated the colorful stage lights, while the added touch of a floor lights helped fill the venue with light and color from floor to ceiling and across the venue walls.
The pair played a solid set of songs both old and new. The dreamier, slightly more downtempo and chillwave-esque song "New Hampshire" came next, allowing the duo to work the crowd steadily into a full on dance party as their set progressed. Selections from their latest release, So Close To Midnight made up the middle of their set, where songs like "Fireworks" and "Ruby Sun" balanced the energy of electro-pop with a decidedly dreamy character, inciting the crowd to dance up a sweat but maintain a dose of cool. Flashlights also revealed a couple new songs, ending with "Haunting Me", a dream-pop piece with a healthy helping of disco-funk and monstrously delicious bass line. Flashlights proves time and time again why they are one of the best groups in Denver right now, and if you are a fan of electro/dream-pop or just plain like to dance, you need to see them if you haven't yet.
|Tiger & Woods|
Next up was the main event, the European nu-disco/future-boogie duo Tiger & Woods. The two have managed to keep mum about their identities and back story, instead choosing to let their music do the talking, and on Wednesday night, their music spoke loud and clear. Behind an impressive set up that contained a huge mixer, two laptops, and a pair of sequencer/controller/samplers, the duo unleashed their mid-tempo, snare heavy, disco inspired sound on the soon-to-be-drenched-in-sweat crowd.
|Tiger & Woods|
Using a blend of influences that stem from Italo disco, Minneapolis funk, boogie, Chicago house and Detroit techno, Tiger & Woods got the dance floor churning to their original productions. They kept a smooth flowing set of pieces available off their full-length release, Through The Green, as bodies became entranced to their catchy bass lines and their ability to emphasize the beat. I was expecting a straight forward DJ set, but the two were recreating their songs using their computer controllers right before the crowd. It meant that there were slight variations in their set that made hearing songs like "Don't Hesistate", "Dr. Burner" and "Love In Cambodgia" all that more contagious. If you want something a little more laid back but will still get you to boogie, check out Tiger & Woods.
Another seasoned local DJ, option4 joined the night's lineup, playing a closing set to keep the night's party going. Although it was a Wednesday night, much of the crowd still felt the itch to dance through the night, so option4 kept the party going for another hour as he laced together a seamless set of groovy and deep house. He also unleashed a couple of his own productions on the crowd. First, he hit the crowd with his newly released bass-heavy deep house version of Daft Punk's "One More Time", a rendition that gives the song a brand new attitude while still keeping what makes the song so recognizable. Then later, he dropped the single off his upcoming EP, an entirely original production called "Ride On". That tech-house meets western piece has a hook so good it gets crowds to sing along while they tear up the dance floor. If you love house music, option4 will supply a steady diet in his sets. Keep an eye out for his upcoming release, because his productions are on another level.
It is nights like these that make Denver such a great music scene. Promoters in the know like Holy Underground and TheHundred are great at giving people what they want - even if the people aren't sure who it is they want yet. Tiger & Woods is still pretty underground, and there aren't many cities in the country right now who are up enough on the cutting edge like that to support a show like the one Larimer Lounge had last night. But thanks to everyone in Denver's great scene and especially the fans that come out in support, we are all ahead of the curve.
See more pictures from this show in the Facebook photo album. Like the Concerted Effort page to stay up to date.