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Protohype | Heavy Beats in a Lousy Space

by Kate Chambers

Well…what can I say?… It happened… Protohype came to Colorado Springs!

I will say this,  Sunshine Studios Live tried its best to host this event and really set a mood… but it flopped. I’ll elaborate…

I’ve never thought of Colorado Springs as a good place for a show, so I was skeptical.  There are amazing venues in Denver, but Colorado Springs?  Not so much… I tell people not to waste their time partying in this city.  I grew up here and have never seen a reputable DJ roll through town until I saw Protohype’s name.  Being local, I decided to put my judgment aside and go check him out.

Seeing videos of Protohype’s set at Lost Lands Music Festival is what first introduced me to his music and I’ve wanted to catch one of his shows since.  I love the way he combines that heavy-hitting bass, remixes of well-known songs, and soft, melodic electronic vibes. Emphasis on the heavy-hitting bass, of course. It’s what he’s known for! I mean you can’t deny the support either, Protohype came with PARRISH, Substance D, and Scarlitt. And let me tell you, I wasn’t very familiar with these three support acts but hey, I dug it!

Protohype is also known for some pretty onpoint visuals and I most definitely wanted to see if he was gonna bring out all the stops. He illuminates LED screens with bright, blinding colors, and even puppies popping up all over the screens.  What makes his dog visuals even better is that he has a brand, #puppycrew, where he throws charity events to raise money for no-kill animal shelters.  So you can feel good watching those puppies flash across the screen in sync with his music.

I knew that his show at Sunshine Studios Live wouldn’t have the production level of Lost Lands, but I was hoping for more than what I got.

Sunshine Studios Live is located on the far south side of Colorado Springs where not much is happening.  It’s basically a run-down concrete room with a bar and a small stage. The visual set-up for Protohype’s show consisted of some lasers, strobes, fog, and a board behind the DJ that flashes colorful dots of light in generic patterns.  I walked into the venue in the middle of Scarlitt’s set and saw the basic visuals and heard the mediocre sound system, and I knew that I was in for some disappointment.

I put all that aside and hoped for the best, and let me just say….Protohype came on dropping his hits one after another, “Prism“, “Fiyah” and “Nightboy” all made the peeps move their feet, but there was this crazy ID I hadn’t heard that I think is “Levitate” but I’m not 100% sure, anyways it was sick! I mean he didn’t hold back and dropped one of his more popular remixes, which is a twist on Twenty-One Pilot’s song “Ride”. Good times.

Each DJ made the best of what they could with the venue and they all dropped the dopeness. And I will say that As a huge Liquid Stranger fan, I was hoping to hear Protohype play his version of “Space Boss”, and I was bummed that I didn’t hear that. It looked like he had some fun playing with the lasers by making cone shaped cages around himself But, man, I was really excited for his visuals on LED screens, and his visuals for this show didn’t even come close to what he’s done at other clubs.

I will say this about Sunshine Studios Live: I enjoyed the small, intimate space. The show was sold out with somewhere around 350 people and yet it didn’t feel overly crowded or stuffy. The whole event felt laid-back and the audience was made up of dedicated fans that I could tell were stoked to be there. Protohype even found time to chill out in the crowd during PARRISH’s set like he was just another person there to see the show.

My takeaway from this show is that location matters.

Protohype seemed to be limited at a venue like Sunshine Studios Live.  The Protohype set that I saw felt like a completely different DJ set compared to the videos that I have seen of him playing at other clubs and festivals.  Maybe next time he stops in Colorado he can play at a venue in Denver where he can utilize his full creative production abilities.

Check out my photo album from the show to get a glimpse of what I’m talking about.  How do you think his show at Sunshine Studios Live compares to some of his other shows?  Let us know in the comments.

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