Space Trip: A Review of Albuquerque’s Launchpad
There are no re-entries at Launchpad. Just like a real rocket mission, once you’re in, that’s it. There is no escaping the celestial spectacle, unless you feel like being thrust into an endless vacuum of instant boredom or death, respectively. The interior is ornamented with dazzling graffiti and stickers juxtaposed on the grimy walls. The floors are sick with gum and spit, and even the ceiling looks like it’s been wounded by rowdy rockers. This is definitely a venue which is as scarred as its patrons. But once the lights fade, it’s all about the music, and even the sight of such beautiful gore takes a backseat to the audio assault.
This is the back-ground noise of stealing everything you hate and burning it alive. This is a forced catharsis, a necessary sedation. When the door closes, you are ensnared in the hot-box. Claustrophobia is a catalyst for mosh pits, some of the best I’ve ever been in. The sounds pulse on the floor and echo off the walls. The lights reflect the bloodstains on your shoes. Everything culminates and congeals into a high-octane hell-ride. The aim is to delve so deep into the darkness that you are absolved of it. A concert at Launchpad is like being unable to take a religious fast, so you just drink whiskey until you vomit. By the time the ritual is complete, the sky is dark with rare stars, and the desert night is cold. At this time, there is no cause for complaint. All that remains is panic upon realizing how far you are from home.