It seems like just yesterday the initial line-up for the 2010 Red Rocks season started trickling out and now it’s already over. Alice in Chains, along with Deftones and Mastodon closed out the season with the Blackdiamondskye Tour on Monday night.
When we bought the tickets to this show I was already mentally preparing for the icy rain and wind that we would have to endure. Red Rocks in October? I remember Monolith in September last year! We braved the elements as long as we could at that one and still left before the headliners each day. It was brutal! But for this tour I figured at least we would have the perfect soundtrack for that weather with the brutal sounds of Mastodon!
My weather prediction was way off, but luckily Mastodon was exactly what I expected! After a couple years of performing Crack the Skye in it’s entirety, I was looking forward to seeing this sludge metal band venture into some of their older material…preferably material from Leviathan.
I got my Leviathan songs, three of them to be exact, I also got a couple tracks of Blood Mountain and a few off Crack the Skye. They were on fire and seemed oblivious to the iconic stage they were playing or the fact they were the opening act. They rocked the stage liked they owned it and left the crowd in a sweaty daze on this perfect night at the Rocks. Smiling ear to ringing ear.
The only complaint I have is the short set. I saw them perform Crack the Skye three times and they still managed to fit in more tracks from their previous 3 albums than they did on Monday night.
Deftones were up next and although I used to be a fan, it’s been so long since I’ve listened to their music that I couldn’t help but be disappointed. Especially when they had to follow a band like Mastodon. That being said, they brought an exciting stage set that consisted of a huge disco ball and some elaborate lighting and managed to keep the crowd going through a set that read like a history of the band…from 1995’s Adrenaline to this year’s Diamond Eyes with quite a bit of Around the Fur in between…it brought me back to those high school years and made me realize these guys still have it in them. Even the new material wasn’t bad at all, which is more than you can say about a lot of the other bands that had this sound in the mid-90s.
Alice in Chains were up next and from our 19th row seats you could feel the energy. I was so much more excited than I was when I saw them at the Fillmore earlier in the year. Back then I had been convinced by Black Gives Way To Blue that they could continue on without Layne Staley, but I just didn’t think the show would be that impressive. Layne was just such a iconic figure and I didn’t think Jerry and this new guy, William DuVall, could replicate that. I was so wrong! That was one of the best shows I have seen all year and the Red Rocks show topped it…if not by setlist or by sound, by the simple fact that this was Red Rocks and this was the last performance we would see here until next year.
The show itself was very similar to the Fillmore show, so I’m not going to recap a lot here. I will say I feel Jerry took lead vocals quite a bit more than he did at the Fillmore.
The main set ended with Rooster and the encore started with a dedication to ‘another member of Alice in Chains, Layne Staley’ in the form of Nutshell before Man In The Box and Would?…a perfect way to end the night. No icy rain or wind, no brutal elements to kick our ass…just some good ol’ hard rock by some bands that have been doing this a long, long time and are proving they will be doing it for a long time to come!
Here’s to a great 2010 season and looking forward to a great 2011 line-up!