Florence and the Machine at Red Rocks, 7/25/12

Categories: Reviews

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Eric Gruneisen


FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE @ RED ROCKS AMPHITHEATRE | 7/25/12

See Also: The Walkmen's Peter Bauer: "Skrillex makes me feel like I don't understand what's happening"

Funneled through the slight, almost frail body of its pale owner, Florence Welch's voice cuts through the silence to fill the spaces between lyrics. And last night, in front of a breathing-room only crowd under the stars at Red Rocks, that voice attempted to bring meaning to misery. For about three minutes, Welch stopped using it. During a pre-encore moment of silence for the victims of the Aurora shooting, Welch instead bowed her fiery mane, closed her eyes and stood in complete silence as a few of her fans burst into tears. Last night, Welch's most powerful note was an implied one.

Earlier, backed by low lights, lead singer Welch entered the stage in profile dressed like a Wild West bride in a stunning off-white gown that allowed her to strut like Jessica Rabbit. Behind her, two more demure but dexterous back-up singers tucked into little black dresses cooed along with her yelps and yawls. The overall effect of the staging struck chords both subdued and surreal as Welch bent her powerhouse voice into "Only If For A Night."

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Eric Gruneisen

Slide show: Florence + the Machine at Red Rocks

Earlier this month, though, that voice was straining, not soaring. After Welch sustained a vocal cord injury two weeks ago, she canceled a handful of dates to allow it a week of rest. "For a second there in Brighton it looked like I might not be touring at all," Welch admitted to the crowd. "To be here and singing for you is fantastic."

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Eric Gruneisen

Both Florence and the Machine and their predecessor onstage, the Walkmen, reveled in the sound potential provided by the venue and its surroundings. Dressed dapper in coordinated suits, the New York-bred indie band played a triumphant opening set comprised largely of its fastest, least forgettable songs. Material from Heaven, which dropped less than two months ago, took on an expansive early life as lead singer Hamilton Leithauser growled earnestly across the band's second ever Red Rocks show. (To read more about their first - and their intimate new record - check out our interview with organist Peter Bauer.)

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Eric Gruneisen
The Walkmen last night at Red Rocks.

The Walkmen's earnest, ambitious set flowed expertly into Florence and the Machine's high drama. With the grace of a ballet dancer, Welch contorted her deep, brassy delivery and her lithe figure across the most triumphant hits from both Lungs and Ceremonials. Through "What The Water Gave Me," she stretched her arms like a wind-up ballerina toward the stars before building the set's tension and her wingspan through "Cosmic Love" and letting it boil over and spill out in "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)."

Location Info

Map

Red Rocks Amphitheatre

18300 W. Alameda Parkway, Morrison, CO

Category: General


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7 comments
Karen Means Moore
Karen Means Moore

possibly the best show EVER at Red Rocks - moving and magical!

Michael Cordova
Michael Cordova

Though Very Talented this was the shortest set I've ever encountered from a headliner I was left wanting more.

Tara Cearnal
Tara Cearnal

I have never been so moved at a concert, a completely unforgettable night. Love flo, love the machine.

The Troubadour's Road
The Troubadour's Road

First line, "Funneled through the slight, almost frail body of its pale owner, Florence Welch's voice cuts through both crap and silence to fill the spaces between lyrics." Odd word usage, to say the least. Who writes, "cuts through the crap?" Come on.

Carly Jocelyn
Carly Jocelyn

I think it's great that so many artists and celebrities are showing support for the victims. It really strengthens my faith in the unity of our nation.

Alkaline Sky
Alkaline Sky

Thank you for the setlist! It was an unforgettable night.

eldaveablo
eldaveablo

Any chance of a setlist for The Walkmen? 

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