The Shpongletron Experience @ Boulder Theater
Spring is in full swing, and the music scene is bursting with options. There are so many tour announcements that resurface like the tulips in one’s garden, so there must be a way to stand out amongst all of the others. I am by no mean saying that world famous British DJ Simon Posford does not stand out on his own with his signature feathered cap and suspenders. But, with the addition of an 18 ft. electrified visual pyramid containing a giant eye ball on top shooting lasers, two smoking hot female dancers, a 6 ft. trippy 3-D face, and beautiful geometric shapes warping on the bottom, this is something to see.
Random Rab is opening the show on this tour and offers his diverse musical tastes to warm up the crowd. Then, Hallucinogen is playing the middle set on the tour. Hallucinogen is Simon Posford (Shpongle) only spinning his unique type of psychedelic trance/goa trance/down tempo. On this night, it sounded very industrial. It had dark, gray, and almost gothic overtones to it. I really enjoyed this set a lot. There was some play with NIN songs, and the dark mood was the perfect way to start a show that slowly and purposefully moved into a lighter uplifting vibe.
Enter the Shpongletron. As the crowd started filling in, and the stage was getting its finishing touches, the venue started to fill up. People were dressed in many different kinds of flamboyant, decorative, tribal, and even masquerade type outfits. There were many elves, maids, fairies, and just about any other concoction of clothing to match the free spirited, inebriated vibe that breathed through the Boulder Theater. The stage was magnificent. I have never seen a DJ booth elevated in such an aesthetic place.
The music itself was of extreme interest to me also. I felt like there was a theme through the night of world music, but not in the usual sense. I felt like it was progressing through different cultures building up with creative futuristic sound waves mixed with traditional old soul sounds of different countries. These sounds took the crowd away for sure. My girlfriend and musician Ashley Touseull said, “There were points when I felt like I was running in a video game with tangled sparking electrical wires shorting all around me.” I heard a virtual tour through Asia followed by a jungle tour in South America. The music is mixed with such amazing traditional sounds that are recognizable as enlightened world music. As the night progressed, the show got better and better including the new Shpongle EP, The God Particle, which sent the crowd into a psychedelic tail spin. The smell of mothballs filled the air more and more as it got later and later. After a Latino vibe the show’s energy switched toward a European sound with flutes and music that sounded Scottish and British. These remote sounds drive the show, but the beats fill ground work for a dance party that keeps the crowd swirling through the stratosphere in costume and in rare form. A Shpongle show is an experience. It is unlike any other show that I have seen before. Furthermore, the shows get remarkably better each time that they come through. I would jump at the opportunity to see this spectacle as soon as possible. It was completely worth it.