Live and Dead

When a few hard-working dreamers resurrected the El Torreon Ballroom a couple years back, rumor had it that this remarkable, supremely located space would one day become a multipurpose venue that would do the city’s music scene proud. That might have seemed like a pie-in-the-sky theory at the time, given Kansas City’s history of failing to support all-ages entertainment, but the El Torreon crew has repeatedly proved doubters wrong. And it will achieve yet another impressive first on Saturday, February 9, when the club plays host to two simultaneous concerts. It’s a move taken straight from the pages of summer shows like the Warped Tour, though this bill features dueling openers and headlining acts instead of the lackluster talent typically showcased on the “second stage” at an alterna-fest. But you can count on a tourlike atmosphere in the big room, where Taboot and the Mason Chambers will faithfully recreate their favorite Phish and Grateful Dead jams, respectively. Taboot makes its first venture into Kansas City, while the Mason Chambers gathers members of local favorites such as the Victorstands and Four Score in a united effort to relive the Dead. Adding to the festivallike ambience, two unrelated bands will be performing at the same time in the room affectionately referred to as “the Pit.” While To Conquer and the Casket Lottery might not inspire the same band-affiliated affection as their Saturday evening gigmates, that doesn’t mean these two angular and dynamic Kansas City staples are any less loved — even if the big room gets the liquid light show.

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