The Killers returned to Red Rocks September 4th to “make it up to us tenfold,” just as they promised after lead singer Brandon Flowers broke his vocal cord after 2 songs when he tried to entertain us back in May. The boys from Vegas delivered on their promise, singing every song from their two albums (all while wearing sequins).
3 weeks later, we ventured again to Red Rocks for the Smashing Pumpkins, which until the concert held creepy associations of “that loud music my college roommate used to blast from her room in a failed attempt to cover up the other sounds coming from her room.”
So how did Billy and his freaky pals stand up to Brandon’s sequined harem?
The Smashing Pumpkins v. The Killers II
- Billy: Bald as a hairless cat and just as intense. I’m not even sure if he had eyebrows or just shiny protrusions wear the brows ought to be. Brandon: Cute with a little boy mustache to match. Winner: Smashing Pumpkins.
- Pumpkins: Ginger, a chick bass player who’s so hot, why, if I wasn’t married, and I liked chicks, and I had a lot of money, well… Killers: Brandon is kind of cute, too. Winner: Smashing Pumpkins. Hot!
- Smashing Pumpkins: dressed in all white. Billy completed his short-pants ensemble with blue striped man-tights, white high-tops and a striped Dr. Suess scarf. Killers: Sequins! Sequin jacket, sequin cummerbund, sequin socks, oh now that’s fresh! Winner: Killers.
- Pumpkins: What a rowdy crowd! Our neighbor guy shared his pretzels with us and his girlfriend grabbed Alex’s butt midway through the show! He didn’t even have to pay extra for that! Killers: Mr. Seven Foot Tall Frat Boy bobbin’ and weavin’ his way through the “I love you, man” stage. Winner: Smashing Pumpkins.
- Killers: To show the love, members of the audience threw down the usual concert gang signs: a) pumping fist; b) pumping sign language for I love you; c) pumping “you da man” pointer finger; d) double-fist pumping; e) lighters for slow songs. Pumpkins lovefest included all aforementioned concert gang throw-downs PLUS one extremely loyal fan who (wait, you have to be ready for this one. Are you ready? Okay…) removed his prosthetic leg with the sock and sneaker and everything and pumped it up and down for an entire song. Winner: Are you serious? Who do you think? He took off his leg, people!
Okay enough, let me just stop right here. I can’t go on. As much as I love the Killers, Smashing Pumpkins tore it up, hands down. The show was so intense that even I was dancing. You longtime readers know that I only dance in my car, so you can imagine how inspired I must have been to perform my little jig in public on the side of a bench surrounded by a bunch of drunk and aging stoners. Yeah, that’s what I’m saying! Every time I thought they were winding down for the big kiss-off, they’d play another whole set. They rocked on for over two and a half hours. Amazing.
The sad part, but also really cool part, is that as the show began, Alex and I realized that the Smashing Pumpkins would likely be our last concert at Red Rocks. The season ends later this month, and we’ll be off on our next adventure before the opening season next spring. Thanks for the memories, Billy (but dude, seriously, what’s with the tights?)!
Holy crap!! Does that crack about your last concert EVER at Red Rocks mean… you’re leaving forever??? I thought you were just leaving Denver while you galivanted overseas, tossing your advance money here and there! Well, good for you, but I don’t think we got to vote? Did everyone else get to vote?
Cool you got to see the concerts. I saw Smashing Pumpkins back in the day (like, the 90s, man) and was too afraid to go to the Killers after my last Red Rocks experience… I’ll leave that to your imagination.