Capping off a five-night Colorado run that included stops in Aspen and Fort Collins, Lotus played three sold out shows at the Boulder Theater over the weekend. Showcasing the new album (“Build”) to a passionate audience of loyal fans, the veteran jammers were on top of their game as they continue to redefine their electro-rock dance sound.
Friday’s show started with a high-energy set by the trio Cosby Sweater before Lotus sandwiched a grooving set between the uplifting track “Spiritualized.” As would become a theme of the weekend, the song selection was a delicate mix of mellow, melodic classics and rock-tinged newer material. It created a thoughtful balance of emotional highs and lows that kept the shows refreshingly unpredictable.
Saturday’s performance played noticeably into the feel-good, catchy nature of the band—highlighted by extended takes of “Tip of the Tongue,” ”Sunrain” and “Flower Sermon.” Known for the fluidity of their live sets, Saturday’s second set was essentially a continuous medley from start to finish filled with dynamic transitions and remarkable communication between the members. It ended with a fitting encore of “The Surf” into a peaceful “Colorado” that elated the hometown crowd.
Playing over the syncopated synths and deep bass of brothers Luke and Jesse Miller, it was Mike Rempel’s intricate guitar work that was most captivating. Opting away from the incessant noodling and speed that plagues many guitarists in the genre, Rempel offered a tasteful, jazz-inspired approach to electronic dance music. His memorable licks and solos often led but rarely dominated the collaborative jams.
Holding down the rhythm section were both Chris Greenfield on drums and Chuck Morris on percussion, a well oiled and locked in machine of four to the floor stability. Greenfield accented creative high-hat work with the occasional massive fill while Morris’ energy saw more than one broken stick being tossed into the crowd mid-song.
The lighting production throughout the weekend was a humble, well-orchestrated combination of movers, strobes and color-changing panels. Fitting to their organic sensibilities and musicianship in a dance scene dominated by the digital, there were no lasers or massive LED images to distract the audience from the music.
After the show, Luke relocated a few hundred feet to the Lazy Dog and played a late night party hosted by Denver Disco as his DJ moniker Luke the Knife. Accompanied by Chuck Morris on a kit, the duo kept a packed house moving to electro-house anthems until 4 in the morning. It was a fitting end to a weekend Lotus fans won’t forget anytime soon.
The band will be back soon enough when they headline Red Rocks Amphitheatre for the third time on Sept. 19 with guests Boombox, Break Science and Minnesota.
Break Build Burn
Behind Midwest Storefronts
He Ain’t Well
Shimmer & Out ->
Intro to a Cell ->
Pitched to the Fire
Lead Pipe ->
E: The Oaks
A 3-Legged Work Horse
Expired Slang ->
Tip of the Tongue
Through the Mirror
Livingston Storm ->
Flower Sermon ->
Ghosts N’ Stuff ->
Flower Sermon ->
Nate Etter is a Boulder-based musician and a regular contributor to Reverb. You can reach him at Nate@EcoVessel.com.
Dylan Langille is a Fort Collins-based photographer and a new contributor to Reverb.