Kevin Staunton
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Slideshow Main Photo Credits
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Few bands have seen more success over the past five years than Columbus, Ohio’s Twenty One Pilots. The duo of singer and multi-instrumentalist Tyler Joseph and drummer Josh Dun have built a massive following out of a sound that touches on a wide variety of styles while anchored in raw, emotional lyrics. Their wildly energetic, anything-goes live sets are a big part of their appeal and for the second night of their sold out stand at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado, Twenty One Pilots offered plenty of evidence that they’re on their way to becoming a generational touchstone.

Mutemath opened the show, an excellent choice given their similar gene splicing of genres. Yet there was little doubt who the massive crowd was there for, as the roar was deafening when Twenty One Pilots took the stage to Blurryface opener “Heavydirtysoul.” The band wore their trademark suits and ski masks in the early going as they smashed and writhed their way across the stage, the raw-nerve force of their music even more apparent live. But the band ran the full gamut of emotions in their set, with covers of ‘90s hits like “My Heart Will Go On” and House of Pain’s “Jump Around” injecting some cheeky fun into their performance.

Above all else, there’s a cathartic quality to Twenty One Pilots’ music and live show. Though the band may have had two nights to shake loose the emotions of the crowd, there’s little doubt their fans are already looking forward to their next performance in Denver.

Check out a slideshow of Twenty One Pilots and Mutemath by AXS.com photographer Kevin Staunton above. The band’s next show is July 15 at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas; follow this link for a full list of their upcoming tour dates.