By any standard of measurement, it was a very warm night in the City of Angels. It was August 13th, and it was a Friday, so yes… Friday the 13th! That said, the temperature paled in comparison to the heat Atmosphere and Cypress Hill were about to bring to the Shrine!
As we pulled up to the Shrine, we were ushered through the auditorium itself through ticket and security check-in, you know… normal stuff. As you walked through after the security check, you got a good look at the halls of the Shrine. It was a reminder to anyone who hadn’t been there before just how majestic this place is as one of the most historic buildings throughout LA.
As we pushed through to the adjacent parking lot just outside the check-in area, it was amazing to see how the parking lot had been transformed into a legit concert area (LA Outdoors). Immediately, we could see the stage from the other side of the fence and with the rumbling of a crowd that was gathering on the other side. As we approached the general admission area, we were hit with a sensation of a different atmospheric pressure. With copious amounts of smoke in the hazy air, coupled by the number of people attending, everyone could feel that a very large crowd was gathering.
Upon arrival, DJ Z-Trip was entertaining the crowd. He was behind his turntables and mic prior to and in between band sets. He played a mix of current and old school mashes along with paying homage to the mariachi culture. Needless to say, the crowd loved every moment of his masterful entertainment.
As the crowd grew larger and larger, so did the anticipation of the opening act. It was time for the sights and sounds of Atmosphere. The duo consists of rapper Slug (Sean Daley) and DJ Ant (Anthony Davis), the guys took the stage like they owned it. Honestly, I didn’t know what to expect.
Since I hadn’t seen them before, I wasn’t sure if these cats from Minneapolis could control the crown. But, I was about to find out just how funky two dudes from Minnesota could get. I am happy to report that I was more than pleasantly surprised because the phenoms brought it! The crowd was into their performance as countless concertgoers were singing along to every word of every song. Songs like “Puppets,” Onemosphere,” “Sunshine,” “Little Man,” “Scapegoat,” and “Trying to Find a Balance.”
If there’s anything to be said about human nature it’s this… despite what we’ve all been through this past year and continue to go through, some fans keep you scratching your head. This is no reflection on the bands, the venue, or anyone else but the fans involved. There were silly people arguing and pushing each other, while others had way too much to drink. This was a very, very small percentage of the crowd, but enough to be noticeable. Luckily, security was patient and on top of all these “situations.” Sadly, that saying is true, turns out that the more things change, the more they stay the same (People!).
Aside the small altercations, the crowd was primed to roll with Cypress Hill and the show they were about to put on! Atmosphere riled up the crowd before the visionaries came on … reminding everyone about all the things that remind them of their second home in Los Angeles, and that today was literally the 30th anniversary to the day of the seminal Cypress Hill album! That reminder drew a large cheer from the crowd.
As the lights dimmed, the crowed lost their minds as B-Real emerged from the shadows hard and fast. The band was electric and their connection to the crowd was undeniable. With clever lyrics and a body-piercing sound, the crowd was energized and went cartoon-crazy over the songs we all grew up loving. With bombastic sonic conviction, Cypress Hill features B-Real, DJ Muggs, Sen Dog and Eric Bobo. Even after all these years, the band can still bring it. The show was energetic and the crowd was dancing and singing along to every single word.
With the insane stage set as a backdrop, B-Real roamed back and forth to both sides of the stage, pumping up the crowd between and during songs. All while he was sportin’ the oversized cigar-like joint. Eric Bobo entertained the crowd on the drum kit, bongos and e-kit.
The band thanked their fans over and over for all the years of support and the crowd responded each time with love and affection in the form of screams and closed raised fists, it was quite the site to see thousands of fans do that in unison.
In the end, the music was the draw. Songs like “Take a Hit from the Bong,” “Tequila Sunrise,” “Insane in the Brain,” “Dr. Green thumb,” and “Rock Superstar” helped burn that mother down (metaphorically speaking of course)!
What a way to celebrate 30 years of Cypress Hill, it was a great night for music in the city of Angels.