Despite being five and a half weeks into the tour and being tired as hell, there was no lack of energy brought by Papadosio to the Majestic Theatre Saturday night. Sam Brouse — who plays keyboard, guitar and sings for the band — said when it comes to Madison, they’re “always excited to be back.”
They definitely showed their gratitude.
Many people were overheard before the show talking of Electric Forest and other music festivals that Papadosio frequent, emphasizing those in attendance were not strangers to the group’s music.
Denver-based opener, Evanoff, worked to build the energy of the many filling the venue. Everyone seemed pleasantly surprised at the talent and charisma they showed in their 40-minute set. Starting off the set with a few originals like “Crowd Control” and “Breathe Out” to give the audience a taste of their music, they eventually added familiar sounds by covering Deadmau5’s “Ghosts ’N’ Stuff,” with the guitar acting as the vocal melody key in the original. “Another Brick” added familiarity, which had pieces of Pink Floyd’s “We Don’t Need No Education” incorporated, almost like a remix. They seamlessly managed to tie together the live instruments to the live-production effects used, serving as an excellent kick-off for the show.
Papadosio’s set started soon after, with older crowd-pleasers like “Cue” and “Hippy Babysitter,” while maintaining a focus on their latest album being promoted on tour, Content Coma. The main floor was packed with people jumping around mindlessly — smiles on their faces and hands in the air, as if the show served as an escape from their everyday lives.
The theme of the new album comes from society’s obsession with social media and technology. “Skipswitch” and “Fanfare for the Rain People,” which, though Brouse said they were “unsure how it would end up because it’s such a simple song, but really nuanced,” definitely came together for the album and was undoubtedly a highlight of the show.
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Considering they’ve played together for over 10 years, Papadosio obviously knows how to work together. Brouse said there are calculations taking place with all their time together. This was evident in their quite cohesive and well-balanced performance.
“I think we’re definitely more comfortable taking risks on stage — both risks that we plan in sound check or rehearsal, and individually,” Brouse said.“If something doesn’t go, everybody has each other’s backs.”
The visuals were just as unique and captivating as the band’s music. Kaleidoscopic images weaved in and out, the accompanying light show adding to the psychedelic vibe of the show. During the album’s title song “Content Coma,” they even tied in the music video released a few weeks ago with other backing images.
Content Coma, genre fluid just as previous albums, maintains elements of rock, electronic and psychedelic. Brouse said they would like to become more educated on jazz to incorporate the genre into their music. The musician said there is potential for an arrangement of strings and woodwinds in future albums while continuing to record in the studio.
You can expect there will be even more creative and high-quality content to come from the band. Even if you missed this time around, you can expect they’ll be back as they try to make it to Madison at least once a year.