What better way to ring in the New Year than with Ghostland Observatory’s NYE 2017: A Space Oddity at Mohawk. The funky, homegrown, electro-rock icons capped off their small Texas tour in Austin with a New Year’s Eve celebration featuring a 2001: A Space Odyssey themed performance compiled with a tribute to David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity.’
Sunday’s sub-freezing temperatures didn’t stop a sold-out crowd from packing the Red River hotspot to accompany GLO on an intergalactic voyage into 2018. The uncharacteristic central Texas snow flurries even added a special, transcendental element to the extraordinary NYE party.
Sensing the crowd’s shivering anticipation, a sun-shaded Aaron Behrens and vampire-caped Thomas Ross Turner took the Mohawk stage 20 minutes prior to their listed 11:30pm set time. The snow had ceased and the Austin crowd roared as Behrens’ robotic vocals shot out across a frenzied set of fiery laser beams during the ‘People Say’ opening and the space-age journey was underway with ‘Glitter’. By the fourth track, it was obvious GLO was the ‘Life of the Party’.
Sliced just above the waistline by rapid beams of blue, green and white lasers, Behrens rocked through an entrancing 3-minute guitar solo during the instrumental chorus of ‘Midnight Voyage’ and the entire crowd shot their hands towards the sky with fingers magically dancing over the keyboard break of ‘Piano Man’.
At the 45-minute mark, GLO took a moment to impart promising words of wisdom for the New Year and counted down to midnight with the crowd as ‘Auld Lang Syne’ played in the background and confetti poured from the sky. Then, GLO rolled right into an uplifting rendition of ‘Silver City’ to start the New Year.
However, the evening’s most inspirational moment came from watching Behrens lean back and sway across the stage, arm extended forward, waving back-and-forth, steering the crowd into 2018 with ‘destination’s still unknown / and ‘The Band Marches On’”. Halfway through ‘Sad Sad City’ the Mohawk had transformed from a literal icebox to a foggy hotbox with the entire crowd chanting along ‘I…need you…to want me, to hold me…to tell me the truth. Yeah!’
Celebrating New Year’s with Ghostland Observatory at Mohawk was not only the most spectacular way to end 2017…but, also the greatest possible way to launch 2018. Happy New Year…and the band marches on.
Ghostland Observatory at Mohawk
Photos by: Matthew Carlin @yo_mtv_matt