By: Katrina Kohlman
I am a huge fan of Gojira and the long awaited Magma dropped in June. We preordered and the newly pressed limited edition gold vinyl showed up in the mail. I got to work listing to the material that day. Of course a few tracks had dropped before the record came out but I am not the type to listen to something out of context so I avoided all the singles I could and man I was happy I did. Gojira had done it again, the next evolution in their sound. Magma is not heavy in the traditional sense but the emotion and passion they bring to this record is just amazing. You feel the pain, the sorrow and the love they had for their mother who died while writing this record. It is heavy on your soul.
Fast forwarding a bit I then heard the Gojira would be heading out on a north American tour and I didn’t care how far they would be, I had to see them if they were going to be on American soil and I immediately bought tickets for the closest show in Milwaukee. We were set. Then one night on a bit of a drunken idea, while coming home from a local show here in ST.Louis our good friend asked us if we wanted to go to Denver to meet his family and see Gojira. I was all for it! I texted him the next day and told him to book the trip. He thought I was joking. I wasn’t.
October was finally here, just going to the mountains was inspiring but once we got to the Gothic theater in Englewood you could feel the intensity even before we went into the theater, a passerby commenting he hadn’t seen a line that long to get into the venue in a long time. It was a sold out show and we were packed in this little colorful theater. Tesseract was the only opener for the show and they were a perfect fit for this tour. They sounded great and the crowd was already getting rowdy, pits and crowd surfing was on! After Tesseract the room was ready to explode you could just feel how excited they were to throw down. Chanting Gojira as we waited for the lights to go down.
Mario the drummer was the first on the stage and they went nuts! The rest of the band right behind him and we blasted off with one of the new tracks from Magma. Immediately the floor was one big giant bouncing, moving, moshing, living thing. People on the balcony were head banging and whipping their long locks singing their hearts out. I have been to many shows and this was a crowd for the ages! The band was on point, never missing a note, giving us a Magma heavy set list along with a light show to match. Joe asked us all together to let go of the anger and the hate and the worry and we all collectively did! The guys did some awesome instrumentals and did some really great extensions of the song “Prey” which was phenomenal! Playing a few from one of their older albums “From Mars to Sirius” and an even older track from their first record. The crowd went hard the whole time and when they left the stage people chanted “one more song!” Which they obliged and played “Vacuity” a great way to end the night! While most people at the show were sated, my boyfriend and I were off to Milwaukee to catch the next show! We said our goodbyes at Denver Union station and rode the rails 18 hours across three states to see the boys one more time.
My boyfriend and I have an affinity for waiting out back by the tour busses early in the day to get a glimpse of our favorite rock stars, hoping to get autographs and photos with everyone. In 2014 we met three of the four guys in Kansas City and this day was no different for us. We were met by Mario first who is one of the most sincere guys in metal and a legend behind the drum set. Christian was next, who just hung with us and was in need of some coffee, followed by Joe, who was just a nice as his brother Mario.
While the show was not as packed as the first, it was a Monday, the energy was still just as intense and people were ready! This venue was a bit larger than the first and the pit had more room to spread across the floor. Tesseract did their thing and the chants of Gojira filled the space. Hitting the stage first was Mario and it erupted. They played the same set as the first show but to me it was even a little more special than the first since I knew what to expect and I noticed a few more special little details. Since this was a bigger stage and bigger space the light show was even more than I imagined and everything tied together so well. I am so happy I could take this trip. Music brought my friends and I together and after this trip we are all even closer and The Goj as they are lovingly called will have a special place for all of us. If you get the chance, take the trip, go see the band you love! Whoever it is! Live your life and don’t settle! Be inspired!