Friday, October 1, 2010

Atmosphere: To All My Friends

A Las Vegas local favorite, Atmosphere returns to The House of Blues with Blueprint, Grieves & Budo and DJ Rare Groove on the To All My Friends Tour. Atmosphere stops in Vegas at least once a year, for more years than I can count, and often takes time to stop at Zia Records beforehand for a meet and greet. I was fortunate enough to meet him in 2008 while promoting When Life Gives You Lemons, however I may be the last fan I know that has not seen one of his shows.

Perhaps the gods have it out for me, as once again I was held up from getting to Atmosphere because my car was still in the shop. After a mad rush to get down there, I was disappointed I had missed all the opening artists, but relieved I arrived just as Slug took the stage. The venue was muggy and packed with a sold out crowd. Slug’s setup included a pianist, bass player, and DJ Ant, providing the crisp blend of natural and electronic beats he is known for. I was quite impressed with his clean live flow and sound, some songs were arguably better live then their recorded versions.
Slug paused between every few songs to recite some positive attitudes and often stopping “to thank all my friends, I love you.” There is a humbling and real attitude that is not only present in his lyrics, but also in his what he projects, taking listeners to another level. The sold out room sang along with every song, waving their hands in unison. Atmosphere was so impressed with the love from his fans, despite the rooms sweltering conditions, he blasted through over twenty songs and an encore: Trying to Find a Balance, Shoulda Known, Guns and Cigarettes, Between the Lines, Hope, To All My Friends, Sunshine, Modern Man's Hustle, Freefallin', Puppets, The Waitress, Godlovesugly, Shrapnel, Scapegoat, Guarantees, Don't Ever Fucking Question That, Pour Me Another, Lovelife, Angelface, Always Coming Back Home to You. Encore: Not Another Day, Like Today, You, and The Best Day.

As an Atmosphere fan, I am lucky for having the well rounded experience of listening first, meeting second, and seeing third. It only allowed time for his music to root deep and keeping my interest level high. Slug is talented on the mic, an artist with words and emotions, and truly puts on a great performance. Atmosphere is a must see for any true hip hop lover.

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