Galactic at the Ogden Theatre, 02/16/13 (photos, review)By Jason Blevins | February 18th, 2013 | No Comments »
New Orleansâ€™ Galactic steamrolled the Ogden TheatreÂ on Saturday, stomping through two-plus hours of swampy, fiery grooves. Galactic conjured a raging, steamy boogie, wrapping its soulful, brassy funk around Living Colour frontman Corey Gloverâ€™s pitch-perfect vocals.
From the â€śLetâ€™s Do It Togetherâ€ť opener to the â€śSympathy For The Devilâ€ť closer, the Big Easy funksters kept the Ogden racing at redline, with a syncopated jive that shook every booty in the house.
Drummer Stanton Moore â€“ a percussive powerhouse who blends and blurs distinct rhythmic styles and stick work â€“ led the show with his bombastic beats, spurring his band to improvised greatness. Moore is the engine behind Galacticâ€™s chameleonic capacity to mold around the music of the moment, from sultry soul and brassy jazz to frenzied hip-hop and swinging funk.
And the music of the moment Saturday night was all over the map.
Guitarist Jeff Raines stirred scalding sitar riffs alongside saxman Ben Ellimanâ€™s bazaar-themed blasts in the cover of the gypsy-jammed Balkan Beat Box classic â€śSunday Arak.â€ť Glover worked with keyboardist Rich Vogel on a jazz-infused, hip-hop inflected â€śI Am The Walrus,â€ť cajoling a house-wide sing along.
Glover climbed to impressive high notes in his soul ballad â€śHeart Of Steel,â€ť hitting and maintaining shrieking peaks that Axl Rose can only dream of today. Moments later Glover mirrored former Galactic singer Theryl â€śThe Housemanâ€ť DeClouetâ€™s throaty rumble in â€śBittersweet,â€ť revealing one of the broadest vocal ranges out there.
Corey â€śBoe Moneyâ€ť Henry â€“ the trombone master from New Orleansâ€™ Rebirth Brass Band â€“ ignited Galacticâ€™s hip-hop fire with â€śFrom The Corner To The Block.â€ť Moore grabbed the reins in â€śCorner,â€ť hammering a complex start-stop rhythm and culling an inspiring brass-blasting battle between Henryâ€™s moaning trombone and Ellimanâ€™s thunderous sax.
Sweating in an ill-advised argyle sweater, Glover threw even more fuel on the Galactic fire with Living Colourâ€™s timeless â€śCult of Personality,â€ť proving his timbre hasnâ€™t faded a touch in 25 years. Gloverâ€™s voice, if anything, has improved in the last few decades. In â€śWhat Is Success,â€ť 48-year-old Glover not only sustained high notes, but handled his own vocal effects with no electronic looping.
Jason BlevinsÂ is a strange dancer, but that has never stopped him.
Tina Hagerling is a Denver photographer and regular contributor to Reverb. Check out more of herÂ concert photography.