Boston to Berkeley II – Rancid & Dropkick Murphys

Dropkick Murphys and Rancid co-headline the “Boston to Berkeley II” tour with special guest The Bronx. This is the first time that Rancid and Dropkick Murphys have hit the road together since their 2017 national tour “Boston to Berkeley”.

According to the tour press release provided by A12 Entertainment, “Rancid and Dropkick Murphys have a long and important history together. Back in 1997, Rancid’s Lars Frederiksen came across a copy of Dropkick Murphys’ original EP at a friend’s house. He turned it over to his bandmate and Hellcat Records president Tim Armstrong, who quickly snatched up the band for his new label.”

Photos By Jesse Haswell

Dropkick Murphys and Rancid have 11 other tour dates after their 10/01/2021 show in Denver, CO at Mission Ballroom Outdoors.

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Bear Grillz at Mission Ballroom

If you have ever wanted to know what an EDM show is like, picture a seashore on a stormy day. The deep rumbling of the beat is like a rolling thunder punctuated by the sharp lightning claps of the drop as the lights flash and strike the attendees. The crowd is a rolling sea of bodies and energy all coming together to form a maelstrom that breaks against the stage barriers like waves upon rocks. Flowing. Tumbling. Boiling. Energy, sound, and motion in one perfect storm and the producer is Poseidon conducting their orchestra.

Starting The Night Off

As a newcomer to large EDM shows I was unprepared for the ferocious energy these shows deliver. Green Matter was the first to offer up her constructs to the gods of sound and energy. With her signature green lighting she unleashed a torrent of rhythms that pulled those first to arrive into the center of the whirlpool the show would become. Next up, Hairitage sparked the storm with his electrifying set which fed those in attendance with more energy. Fans drew energy from him as he moved around the stage ushering them into a near frenzy at the climax of every song.

OG Nixin

What is better than an OG? An OG versus a Ninja! OG Nixin called out a fan in ninja garb during his set at Mission Ballroom. In response, the ninja gave a bow before inciting a large rowdy mosh pit in the center of the arena. Bodies crashed into bodies in a torrent of sweat and flesh. The lights from onlooker’s cameras as they filmed the scene shown brightly in the dimly lit room. Taking inspiration from this, OG Nixin called for everyone to light up the arena using only the lights on their phones. The atmosphere became surreal as the lights tried to penetrate the heavy fog that filled the area. At times, the lights were so bright and the shadows so deep that one couldn’t even make out the owners of the phones leaving a spectacular but eerie spectacle of disembodied lights as the only things in attendance.

Terror And A B2B

Each artist tends to feed into the performance of the next artist in the lineup. A no more evident example of this is how the spirit lights from OG Nixin fed into the nightmarish themes of the B2B between Downlink and Figure. Grotesque images and horrific elements possessed the screen behind Downlink and Figure as they performed. Fans were treated to beats that complimented the images that flashed on the screen as lights in red, blue and green bathed the venue in hellish light. Those dark elements had no effect on the radiant energy coming from the crowd.

Bear Bones Mask

After a brief respite from the storm that had engulfed the Mission Ballroom, the master of chaos himself came to the spotlight. Sporting a new mask resembling the hellish bones of a demon spawn bear, Bear Grillz brought an eruptive conclusion to the night’s events. Expertly weaving between originals, mixes and remixes, collaborations, and showcasing the talent of new artists that signed to Bear Grillz personally founded label, Rude Service; all a part of the masterful culmination of the evening’s events. The burgeoning artists that have been signed to the Rude Service family are Carried Away, Stryer, and Lodis. Each artist was given the opportunity to perform an original with Bear Grillz in front of the packed Mission Ballroom.

Photos by Jesse Haswell

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