With the K2 conference completed, I was the last of the “K2 Insiders” remaining in town. This meant some great fun with the K2 crew, especially the CEO, CTO, COO and product lead/s – over dinner and drinks. They’re a great bunch of guys – very down-to-earth and approachable.
So much fun was had, that the weekend (Sat.) began rather ordinary – with a high-definition hangover, after “The Celtic Tavern” and a 3.30 am finish.
I was planning to catch up with some old family friends who live in the suburbs of Denver (Lakewood). Have known the family for close to 20 years, a work colleague of my father’s who met Andy at a university conference. Ironic then, that I should be meeting up with them – while in the USA for a conference.
They collected me from the hotel, and back to their house, for show-and-tell of Cameron & Liam – and to see Alexander and Annalise (who I’d never met – Alex was 5 last time – now 11).
Off to a Mexican restaurant in nearby Morrison – before heading up to Red Rocks amphitheatre.
The trucks in Colorado just get bigger and bigger – I saw this truck in the car-park – nearly needs a step-ladder to get into it !
Check out the “towbar” – what a ridiculously over-sized vehicle !
The Red Rocks Amphitheatre is an amazing place – I went a bit snap-happy, but the pictures don’t do it any justice.
This is an outdoor concert venue – a natural amphitheatre – most famous (in my mind) from the U2 video “Under A Blood Red Sky” – one of the “50 moments that changed roll-n-roll”, according to Rolling Stone magazine.
Lots of bands have performed there – from The Beatles, to Nine Inch Nails (click for YouTube), Ozzy Osbourne, Pantera, Metallica, Mariah Carey (!), The Grateful Dead, Aerosmith, so many bands – there was literally a WALL of names / artists who have played there – since 1941.
Just have to do a search at YouTube to see how many bands have played there !
It’s a natural “bowl” with incredible high rock formations surrounding. There’s *ME* standing in the same place as all those legends of music :
And – a photo of the Red Hot Chili Peppers – live from Red Rocks.
After that, was back into town – off to see another “legend of rock” – Al Jourgensen and MINISTRY – on their farewell tour (C U LaTour).
Must have been a LOUD night in Denver – with Gigantour (Megadeth about 500m up the road.
First up was HEMLOCK – who I’d researched, and read about/listened – and was pretty excited to see them. They only had a 1/2 hour set – but were incredible !
That’s me with the lead singer – he looks pretty mean, but one of the nicest blokes you could meet. chatted about coming down to Australia – I’ll have to get ’em a slot at the Big Day Out !
Another band called Meshuggah were on next, who I wasn’t so familiar with – they rocked too, although not exactly jump around music. Very technical structure of songs, not so much chug/melody – not as good as HEMLOCK anyway !!
They began to construct a cage on the stage – was all for show/effect – and for Al to have something to lean on !
Those balloons you can (just) see on the roof were dropped during the last song – they finished with Roadhouse Blues, and a ZZ Top and Rolling Stones cover !
There was a great light/visuals show on the back screen – lots of weird images & videos. They started with 4-5 songs from the new album, and then some other, older stuff which I didn’t know so much. Very heavy, fast and groove-y.
Then – Al said “we got a special guest vocalist – Burton from Fear Factory !”
I couldn’t believe it !! He sang the vocals for JUST ONE FIX – and NEW WORLD ORDER ! Unbelievable – what luck to be at that show !
Was very cool to see a show in the U.S., the crowds were a bit different than I expected – a lot rougher – and there were three sections on the floor, to calm down any moshing – so no crowd surfing at all.
Slept very soundly that night, even though it was on a air mattress at another K2’ers house !
Woke up on Sunday (this morning) to some amazingly clear blue skies – like a crisp winter morning in Melbourne.
After another big breakfast of eggs, bacon, mash/hash-brown AND pancakes, we drove around Denver a bit more, took the dog for a walk, and more sight-seeing. It’s a really lovely place – will have to take the family there one day.
Was such a nice day that we all ended up at Red Rocks (again) – as I’d missed out seeing the Visitor Centre the day before, and another person hadn’t been there before.
You can see all the way down to Denver (tall buildings in upper left) – and another lookout along the rocky ridge, with flat lands visible towards Kansas.
Then – off to the airport, and flight to Los Angeles. I’m now just waiting for flight back to Melbourne – home to family – and the end of another GW adventure….
LAX really *IS* an international hub – check out some of those destinations !