I can't think of a better way to prepare for a weekend of parties than by attending a party, so last night I went to the Larimer Lounge to start things off right. The Larimer Lounge hosted a couple local acts and a national act that all share one thing in common - inciting people to dance. A sizable crowd made their way to the venue ready to dance, and the combined energy of the crowd and performers made the night a great starter party.
|Ron Cole of Hollagramz|
The party began with a DJ set from Hollagramz. Although Hollagramz usually performs as a duo, for this night Ron Cole was the sole representative from the group in charge of laying down a mix. Ron Cole took a spot on center stage and began pumping out a dance mix that reflected the Hollagramz style - a blend of heavy bass with 2-step/funky and tropical rhythms. His moody grooves were a good party starter, getting people in the mood for dancing as people arrived and began to fill the venue. As an opener should, he did well to gather people towards the dance floor by the end of his set.
Next up was local noise/electro-pop duo ManCub. ManCub setup in their characteristic face-to-face manner, bringing an intimate quality to their set by putting their analog synth rig not up on the stage but right on the dance floor as Alex Anderson and James Wayne began to crank out their original songs. Their set began with a trio of their newer noise-pop meets chillwave songs that set the tone for the set and got the crowd going. Everything was going smoothly until the unthinkable happened - one of ManCub's tube amps fell from the stage onto the dancefloor during one of their songs. As disastrous as that should have been, ManCub did their best to continue on with their set, but after trying to perform "Made In Japan" and "Summer Rain" they had to end their set early.
Prior to the mishap, things were going great - the crowd was on the dance floor and people were getting into their set. ManCub handled themselves as well as they could post mishap, still trying to keep things going. For the most part, those that didn't see what happened didn't even realize anything was wrong - it helps that ManCub's style of sound involves a lot of noise, so with the amp not working up to par things sounded different than usual but not necessarily off. But a couple songs later more things began to fail and there was no more going forward. I commend them for working through adversity - they managed to maintain the party atmosphere despite setbacks. Luckily for the crowd, there was still one more act so the show did continue to go on.
Headliners Cherub came up on stage to close out the night with a set of their own, and they brought the party to its absolute peak. Cherub is the electro-pop duo of Jordan Kelly and Jason Huber from Tennessee. Both members play guitar and do vocals, accompanied by a computer and drum machine, with Jordan Kelly busting out the talkbox for some songs. Cherub's EP, Man of the Hour, is a collection of electro-pop songs with a strong retro funk influence, making for a modern dance set that also has a sort of laid back sexy groove to it, but their live set includes that funkiness plus a lot more.
Cherub forgoes much of the laid back groove feel in their live set for something with a lot more energy and oomph. Cherub got the crowd to go completely nuts on the dance floor by blending their funky guitar and vocals with uptempo house/techno beats, a hybrid sound that is incredibly danceable while being fresh and unique. The two have impeccable stage presence as well, infectiously transferring their seemingly unending supply of energy to crowd on the dance floor. Their danced-up versions of their original songs were very crowd pleasing, but they also threw in some covers/remixes as well. Their version of Daft Punk's "Around The World" definitely stood out, complete with Jordan Kelly providing the talkbox autotune style vocals. By the end of the night, both the band and the crowd were a sweaty mess, and everyone had wide smiles. Check out this band's EP for some smooth grooves, but make sure you bring your dancing shoes to see these guys live, because they bring the intensity.
See more pictures from this show in the Facebook photo album. Like the Concerted Effort page to stay up to date!