Live review and photo essay, Monolith, Day 1: Rockin' at Wet Rocks - Reverb - Reverb

Live review and photo essay, Monolith, Day 1: Rockin' at Wet Rocks

mono1

Karen O, lead singer of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, performs during the Monolith Festival on Saturday at Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The annual music festival continues today. Photo by John Leyba, The Denver Post

Cold weather and rain have almost become a tradition at the annual Monolith Festival, which opened at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Saturday.

While headliners Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Girl Talk and Of Montreal should have been the stars of the festival’s first day, the rain and lingering cold weather upstaged much of the music, making for slightly thinner crowds at the outdoor stages and mammoth attendance at the indoor stages.

Images from Day 1 of Monolith at Red Rocks, plus the pre-party show the night before at the Gothic Theatre. Photos by John Moore.

To see Denver Post staff photographer John Leyba’s stellar Day 1 photo gallery, click here . Here’s a sample:

leyba sample

Monolith continues today with headliners Mars Volta and Chromeo but not MSTRKRFT, which canceled.

Despite Saturday’s weather, Red Rocks seemed fuller than it has at past Monoliths. But when the rain was at its peak, long lines stretched out of the amphitheater’s underground visitor center, home to two of the festival stages with the most limited capacity. Like past years, the music Saturday was mostly stellar and artfully consistent.

After taking a brief break, the rain came back strong for Yeah Yeah Yeahs singer Karen O to storm the stage and howl, “Red rockin’!” The band played a formidable set that included a moody, almost bipolar “Runaway,” a thrilling take on “Gold Lion” and a fittingly dancey “Zero.” The band’s sound was dialed in immediately, and their headlining set was strong but not epic.

The day’s surprise standout was Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, an arty 10-piece collective that wooed a sizable audience early in the afternoon. Their sprawling, hippie-dippy set of psychedelic pop was equal parts Arcade Fire grandiose and Akron/Family freakishness. Their buzzy set had fans talking all day long.

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Categories: REVERB
  • Johnny Lundock

    The Walkmen killed it. I was tired, wet and cold and The Walkmen made me forget all about it.

  • http://www.myspace.com/actionpackedthrillride Lucas

    Yeah, the Walkmen were phenomenal. The rain couldn't wipe the goofy grin off my face during their set. Also, Edward Sharpe was definitely a highlight for me, so I agree with you there. I got more of a 'Smiths' vibe from Pains of Being Pure at Heart. I didn't really dig much of their set until the last two songs, which were really fantastic. Same with Of Montreal (I haven't checked out their last 2 records, which seemed to be where the majority of their set was drawn from, since I didn't recognize too many of them.) I felt the first part of their set was a bit too meandering for my tastes, but the last three songs of their set were amazing.

  • ricardobaca

    Radness, guys. I saw the first three or four Walkmen songs, but they didn't bring me in. Never been a big fan of the songs, and when I've seen them live, I've never been won over by their cooler-than-thou stage presence. At least with their Monolith show, it was fun watching the singer try to act too-cool-for-the-cold — even though it was FREEZING and wet. We were close, as we'd waited for 20 minutes (my girlfriend is into them), and you could see the singer trying to hold back his shivers, as he was only wearing a thin black leather jacket.And I could hear the Smiths in the Pains set – the My Bloody Valentine, too. Still, I couldn't shake the B&S sounds in there. What a trip they were. Just got their new EP, and I'm way psyched to pop it in the player!And Lucas, if you've never check out Of Montreal's “Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer” (their second-to-last-record), do it, man! It's my favorite record of theirs, hands down.

  • http://www.denvereverb.com Ricardo Baca

    Radness, guys. I saw the first three or four Walkmen songs, but they didn't bring me in. Never been a big fan of the songs, and when I've seen them live, I've never been won over by their cooler-than-thou stage presence. At least with their Monolith show, it was fun watching the singer try to act too-cool-for-the-cold — even though it was FREEZING and wet. We were close, as we'd waited for 20 minutes (my girlfriend is into them), and you could see the singer trying to hold back his shivers, as he was only wearing a thin black leather jacket.And I could hear the Smiths in the Pains set – the My Bloody Valentine, too. Still, I couldn't shake the B&S sounds in there. What a trip they were. Just got their new EP, and I'm way psyched to pop it in the player!And Lucas, if you've never check out Of Montreal's “Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer” (their second-to-last-record), do it, man! It's my favorite record of theirs, hands down.

  • http://www.myspace.com/actionpackedthrillride Lucas

    Yeah, the Walkmen were phenomenal. The rain couldn't wipe the goofy grin off my face during their set. Also, Edward Sharpe was definitely a highlight for me, so I agree with you there. I got more of a 'Smiths' vibe from Pains of Being Pure at Heart. I didn't really dig much of their set until the last two songs, which were really fantastic. Same with Of Montreal (I haven't checked out their last 2 records, which seemed to be where the majority of their set was drawn from, since I didn't recognize too many of them.) I felt the first part of their set was a bit too meandering for my tastes, but the last three songs of their set were amazing.

  • http://www.denvereverb.com Ricardo Baca

    Radness, guys. I saw the first three or four Walkmen songs, but they didn't bring me in. Never been a big fan of the songs, and when I've seen them live, I've never been won over by their cooler-than-thou stage presence. At least with their Monolith show, it was fun watching the singer try to act too-cool-for-the-cold — even though it was FREEZING and wet. We were close, as we'd waited for 20 minutes (my girlfriend is into them), and you could see the singer trying to hold back his shivers, as he was only wearing a thin black leather jacket.And I could hear the Smiths in the Pains set – the My Bloody Valentine, too. Still, I couldn't shake the B&S sounds in there. What a trip they were. Just got their new EP, and I'm way psyched to pop it in the player!And Lucas, if you've never check out Of Montreal's “Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer” (their second-to-last-record), do it, man! It's my favorite record of theirs, hands down.