Photos by: Ahmed Shaikh (Nefarius)
Story by: Becca M
Infected Mushroom has been infecting the minds of electronic music lovers for nearly two decades now. Amit Duvdevani and Erez Eisen have been pushing the boundaries of dance and electronic exploration, and the live performance of Animatronica, the duo's latest live band stage show, is no exception.
Following an acoustic performance the previous night at the same venue centered around the pair's latest album, Converting Vegetarians II, which just dropped on Dim Mak, Infected Mushroom returned to Gothic Theatre in Englewood, CO on October 9, 2015 for a full live performance with three support sets from Lucid Vision, Skydyed, and Randy Seidman. The main event, though; the Animatronica performance, was truly a sight to behold.
The evening began with Lucid Vision. As more and more people came filtering through the door, Dalton Kieta was there to ease everyone into the evening. His chill tunes set the mood for a night of heavy bass. His laid back, appetizing performance was a great start to the night.
Next up was Skydyed, who picked up the pace a little with their livetronica groove. The trio from Fort Collins is fresh off the release of its Peace By Piece EP. They kept building the anticipation for the main event by frequently asking the crowd “Are you ready for Infected Mushroom tonight?” Barreling towards a high-energy finale, the crowd roared when Skydyed hit its final note.
Then Randy Seidman came out to build that last little bit of energy before the main event. His upbeat set got everyone up on their feet and dancing. By the time his performance was coming to an end, the audience was pumped up and ready for Infected Mushroom.
While Seidman was still on stage, we headed down to the dressing room for a quick interview with Infected Mushroom. Once we got checked through security, we walked downstairs, and found ourselves in the midst of pre-show preparation. As we were offered a seat, we asked the guys a few questions:
It was close to this time last year that you had given a performance in the area, what's it like to be back in Colorado again?
Amit: We love coming to Colorado. The people are eclectic. The crowd is great.
What goes into setting up everything each night?
Amit: We have an awesome crew who sets everything up for us. It's super easy. We just attend the shows! (Erez nods in agreement)
How did the idea come about? Was it just you or did the El Pulpo Mecanico team just take an idea and run with it?
Amit: Going to Burning Man and seeing all of the tall structures. We just went to El Pulp Mecanico and said 'Hey we want a giant animatronic mushroom.' and he said 'Okay, we'll do it!' and that's where it came from.
How do you get ready/prep for your performance? Do you have any crazy pre-show ritutals?
Amit: Well, Erez wakes up at 9pm. You see? He just woke up.
Erez: Yeah I just woke up.
Amit: Then we just drink lots of beer!
What is your favorite part of the tour so far?
Amit: We love everything about the tour. We have a good crew, it's great to be on the road all the time, and the attendance at our shows is always good.
What was the inspiration for your new album?
Amit: Well of course, Converting Vegetarians Part One was a huge inspiration. Also, chill out music from now and in the past.
Finally, it was time for the main event. As everyone's eyes were on the stage, from behind the curtain came a wave of a hand. The crowd bellowed its approval. The music began and the curtain started opening very slowly, finally revealing the jaw-dropping set. In the center was a giant, metallic animatronic mushroom. It had eyes popping out everywhere and mouths on every side, with two bulbous arms reaching out from each side. On stage left and stage right there were two smaller mushrooms with bright red eyes and pointy teeth. They'd move up and down, hiding their faces, and then resurfacing. Every so often, they'd even blow a burst of cold fog over the audience. The mechanics of the show were absolutely phenomenal.
Amit was center stage, while Erez and the band members were on each side of him with their respective instruments. Amit is the consummate frontman, getting on the mic, pumping up the fans, and leading the charge into the sonic fire. It was as if he were the dance conductor. No matter what he did, the crowd followed his lead.
The performance included an elegant balance of new and old. There were many tracks from their latest album, as well as old time favorites like “Becoming Insane.” From tracks that had a super high level of energy, to others that let the audience chill for a bit, Infected Mushroom took the Gothic on a journey.
The performance was unforgettable, and I'd hard-pressed to find a fan who didn't want the show to end. Every member of the audience left with a delightfully infected mind from the astounding Animatronica performance.
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