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Atmosphere Sells Out Show at Mission Ballroom

Atmosphere Sells Out Show at Mission Ballroom


September 26th, 2019

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Atmosphere’s debut at the Mission Ballroom sold out the first of two nights to many loyal Denver fans. Atmosphere performed Friday and Saturday night. Coupled with his long and continued legacy with a strong track record of hits, Atmosphere has gained recognition as one of the older generations top rappers on the scene to date.

Opening for Atmosphere on Friday the 20th was Nikki Jean, DJ Keezy, Grieves and Brother Ali. First, Grieves brought a strong and upbeat performance, which was received well by a packed house of ready fans. Then, between Grieves and Brother Ali’s performance DJ Keevy spun some classic mixes. Likewise, she held the audience’s attention with her smooth and laid-back style that holds a sentimental air to hip-hop’s roots, in the exchange of mix-tapes and feeling of underground dance clubs.

Brother Ali

Brother Ali’s performance held heart and classic hip-hop respect in his hour-long performance. It was obvious to tell the crowd was equally eager to hear Brother Ali as they were for Atmosphere. At first the theater exploded with applause as Ali walked out to greet his fans. Ali’s performance was consistent with a mix between his old popular songs and some of his new tracks. The second song was “Fresh Air,” off his 2009 album US, followed by “Tight Rope,” and into his well-known track “Uncle Sam Goddamn,” from his 2007 album The Undisputed Truth. This was followed by “BabyGirl” from US, which is a heartfelt account of living with someone who has been sexually abused. Brother Ali is known for his impactful and truthful rhymes. This have kept him a consistent figure on the hip-hop scene since his debut album Champion EP, came out in 2004.

Later, in the middle of his performance Ali took a minute to address the crowd where he referenced the roots of hip-hop and the days of mix tapes. Afterwards, Ali stated, “When we share this music, we know that we are not alone. Let’s heal together. Do you want more like we want more? We don’t make this music for the charts, for T.V commercials, or for the industry, we make it for you”. This led into “Truth is”. The crowd responded back to the chorus of “I want mote, give me more, we want more god damn it, I’m back to demand it and we get more”. In short, the crowd was under Brother Ali’s spell. His set seemed to pass by in mere minutes.

Atmosphere Night 1

Atmosphere’s performance moved through the history of his own music, with songs like “The Loser Wins” from Blood Make the Blade Holy (2010), to “Shoulda Known” from When Life Gives you Lemons (2008). These were followed by “Fuck You Lucy,” and “God Loves Ugly” from his older album God loves Ugly (2002). Atmosphere sets a constant reminder of why the group continues to be a legend in the industry. More than once Sean Daley remarked to the audience how, “old” they looked. At one point he says, “thank you for allowing us to look at you, a bunch of fucking old people. I’m glad you’re old. Shit, I’m old too”. The audience threw back a laugh as a response and the night continued. For the most part, the audience consisted of obvious avid Atmosphere loyalists, many of which sang every line to each rhyme.

Atmosphere at Mission Ballroom

 Atmosphere, consisting of rapper Sean Daley and DJ/producer Anthony Davis, formed in 1996. Their first album Overcast! was released in 1997. This album brought Atmosphere to the attention of wider audiences with the hit single “Scapegoat”. Since then, the duo has continued to gain and maintain a strong fan-base with 16 well-known albums and a whole lot more singles and EP’s. Atmosphere’s joke on age, which he focused on for both shows, holds the respect of his weighted discography.

Atmosphere Night 2

This two-night run tested Atmosphere’s credibility and their energy as older performers. Following Friday’s performance, Prof brought an energetic set packed with demanding crowd engagement for the set on Saturday. The crowd was warmed up and the bar was set for Atmosphere. Atmosphere didn’t have the energy or the theatrics that Prof showed, but his songs dug into thoughtful lyrics with a sentimental punch.

After opening with a bit of old and new, Atmosphere played “F’@ck Lucy” and “God Loves Ugly” back to back once again. Subsequently, this kick added to the energy in the room and got the crowd singing along. With flawless transitions and tasteful scratching, the production had a very unique sound, that is Anthony Davis’ creation. The visuals used deep primary colors. Everything was simple. The set up utilized huge LED screens projecting colors that stirred emotions in the audience.


In short, for many, both shows were a delightful dose of nostalgia. Atmosphere played many of the classics, to which the crowd reacted well. To conclude the night, they ended with “Yesterday,” and you could sense the respect and emotional weight that hung in the room as Atmosphere walked off stage.

Photos by: Ash Daniels, Randy Mills

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