Review: ANGLS Release Debut Self-Titled EP Of Produced Pop

By: Andrew Wright

When musicians come together and make great music, it’s truly a blessing for the local music scene in which they’re in. If you are a fan of electropop touching on a multitude of themes, from summer dance pieces to heavier, more brooding subjects, check out ANGLS.

ANGLS.

ANGLS.

Ellipsis, who is also a producer, teamed up with Norman Hittle (Hydrogen Skyline) in 2015 after having crossed paths a few times before in the Denver scene. When they combined their talents, they found themselves experimenting with cool, dancey synth vibes for a fun and enticing sound that is for more than just the summer parties you’ll instantly imagine yourself at while listening to them.

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Just recently, ANGLS released their debut record, which holds five tracks and is self-titled. My personal favorite on the EP is “Heroes,” which has a more somber tone to it. It definitely reminded me of Imagine Dragons, but with a darker subject matter. If you’re looking for something more upbeat, “Puppet” might be more your style. Though it feels like it’s about heartbreak, it’s catchy and groovin’. It’s the type of track to make you burst into dance, whether you’re in the middle of the club or at home in your bedroom.

ANGLS will definitely be on my radar for future music. Keep up with the band here.

-Andrew

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

New Year's Eve At Red Rocks Is Going To Be A Party

The clock is counting down as the holidays approach, and every year it seems to come by even faster than the previous years celebration. We're talking about ringing in the New Year, of course! Starting 2018 off on the right note will be easy when you consider all of the difference parties, local celebrations, and events happening throughout the Denver area.

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New Year's Eve on the Rocks at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre is arguably the most anticipated party to ring in 2018, and even more so when you consider that this is the first ever New Year's celebration at the iconic venue. The all-star lineup for this concert almost guarantees a sell-out, with locals and tourists flocking into town to experience the magic! The line up is boasting names like Migos, Post Malone, Young Thug, Lil Yachty, and Dizzy Wright, so it's safe to say that this is going to be a night of hip-hop to remember for years to come. It's sponsored by Cervantes', Feyline, and KS107.5, so be sure to tune in for your chance to win tickets if you haven't had a chance to snag your own yet.

Safety is important anytime you plan on partying with friends, but even more so when so many people are partying for the new year, so be sure to prepare for your mode of transportation after drinking and dancing. Ride share services will surely take advantage of price surging during this time, so it's worth it to consider professional transportation such as a party bus or limousine. Not only is it more comfortable for a group of people, but it also comes at a comparable price tag after splitting it up among everyone who is attending. With amenities like cup holders, neon lights, comfortable seating and custom streaming ability on the subwoofer-equipped stereo systems, you're sure to enjoy the enhanced experience.

There will be shuttles leaving from specific bars around town like Thirsty Lion and Illegal Pete's, but be sure to weigh all of your options… especially if they're just as costly as professional transportation. Denver Party Bus Services allow you to have more control over your overall experience. For those able to attend, New Years Eve on the Rocks is going to be an exceptional party! Doors are at 5:00PM on the 31st, so don't be late. Swing over in style!

Book your bus now:

Limo Denver

1441 S Glencoe St Denver, CO 80222

(720) 619-2720

Browse the full fleet here.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. 

Review: Son and Cynic's Alt Rock Record 'Wherever I Am' Is A Solid Debut

By: Nathan Sheppard

Denver band Son and Cynic released their debut EP this past May, and it is a must listen!

Wherever I Am is the self-recorded EP from this up and coming indie rock band founded by Cayla Shortley (vocals) and Brian Obernesser (guitar). This album combines different musical elements to create an EP that you will want to listen to on repeat.  

Oddly enough Brian and Cayla are both from North Carolina but didn’t meet until moving to Denver; the band formed shortly after in 2016. The two turned to crowdfunding and the help of family and friends to release the EP, which was mixed and mastered by Kevin Chipman of LCMasters back in North Carolina. After a successful fundraising campaign they were able to film a music video for their single “Get Away,” followed by the EP release May 19th.

Son and Cynic.

Son and Cynic.

The EP starts with “The Arrival,” which showcases Son and Cynic’s unique style. Starting out with a slower folk-like intro and Cayla’s haunting and hypnotizing melodic voice, you’re then hit with solid guitar riffs that you can jam out to. It’s the perfect intro to this great EP. “Dead of Night” is another solid track with a spacey, indie sound that is really novel and really showcases Son and Cynic’s versatility and musical talent. The record finishes with “Cold Fever,” which is one of my favorite tracks. It’s one of the more “poppy” songs, but is really catchy; something that I think makes a great tune. Overall this is a well done debut for Son and Cynic and I look forward to seeing where they go from here and what they have in store for the future.

You can listen to “Wherever I Am” everywhere music is available. Catch the band live this month, November 25th at The Marquis with Evinair, Wolf Poets, and Gestalt and keep up with Son and Cynic here.

-Nathan

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Hollow Are Making A Lot More Noise Than Just "Sleep Talkin'"

By: Elizabeth Lee

The goal of The Hollow (a band we once joined on tour aboard their "CrowBus") is very straightforward: “to deliver exceptional music that makes you fall in love with rock and roll all over again.” Since the alternative-rock band was formed in 2013, they have done exactly that, aiming to transform the landscape of contemporary rock and roll music. They released their first EP in 2015 and are now on the tail of an extremely successful tour in 2016, which has featured sold out shows, national support appearances, and festival slots.

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“Sleep Talkin” is their latest single, accompanied by a newly released music video, which dropped November 4th. The video is a testimony to all that The Hollow has worked for, collaborating with Kind Dub, AlphaPixel Digital, Evergroove Studio and many others. The song focuses on honesty and open communication in relationships, as the video shows a couple heading to sleep with unspoken words.

Watch "Sleep Talkin'":

Visually, the video is evocative and eye-catching, serving as a metaphor for the narrator’s struggle. The single keeps with the band’s hard-hitting, focused style of rock'n'roll, with a heavy rhythm section, skillfully layered guitar-laced with strong vocals, and powerful lyrics. The Hollow draw their influence from rock icons such as MUSE and Queens of the Stone Age, and it shows even in the mood of the video.

Check out “Sleep Talkin” and be sure to catch The Hollow at their next live show, December 9th at Peak 31 Union Station in Colorado Springs.

Keep up with the band here.

-Elizabeth

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Three Modern Artists For Hendrix Fans

Tributes to Jimi Hendrix will never get old. Despite the fact that he’s been gone for several decades, he remains one of the most impactful artists in any musical genre. He’s still thought of by many as one of the great guitarists in history. Indeed, not so long ago Rolling Stone ranked him as the very best (just ahead of the likes of Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page), saying that his instrument was “like a divining rod of the turbulent Sixties” – not at all a bad way to put it.

Incidentally, the last year or so has seen a number of tributes to the artists, taking various forms, from a park opening in his name in Seattle to a video game being posted online. The game, part of a trilogy of rock-infused slot arcades, is based on the musician’s work and his legendary guitar riffs. It’s not exactly headline news, but it’s an intriguing blend of a decidedly modern gaming format and a somewhat “vintage” artist – perhaps speaking to the idea that even now there’s nothing dated about Hendrix’s sound. Other tributes of late have included accounts of old tours from ZZ Top frontman Billy Gibbons, the announcement of a new festival in Hendrix’s name in Folkestone, England, and even discussions about renaming a street in New York for the artist.

Altogether, these stories, mentions, and tributes – all from the last year – demonstrate the undeniable fact that Jimi Hendrix is never far from public consciousness. He’s in a very rare club with fellow artists from past eras who aren’t just easy for modern audiences to appreciate or respect, but easy for them to like.

It is perhaps because of this that there are still budding artists today who look to Hendrix, rather than more modern guitarists and performers, for inspiration. Like new writers citing Hemingway and Fitzgerald, or young actors studying Grace Kelly or Cary Grant, plenty of indie or up-and-coming modern artists will point to Hendrix as someone to be revered, studied, and imitated. And as you might expect, some of them are well worth listening.

If this sounds intriguing to you, here are three artists in particular to keep an eye on.

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Jupiter’s Carnival

This group has some of the most Hendrix-like sounds you’ll find today – which is not to say they’re a direct imitation. The band describes itself as “a psychedelic group from the south west of the UK” on its website, following up on the description with eye-popping album covers bursting with bright colors and funky designs. Their sound is about as you’d expect at a glance, occasionally more toward funk, but often with at least a hint of Hendrix.

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Gary Clark Jr.

This young rock/blues artist out of Texas appears to be on his way to stardom, having shared the stage with some of the bigger names in music already. For whatever reason though he still appears to be somewhat obscure. No less an artist than Alicia Keys has compared him to Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton has personally invited him to play, and he even played at the White House alongside B.B. King and others. Clark could be the most talented guitarist we’ve seen since John Mayer (who, love him or hate him, is an incredible talent), and he’s at least somewhat in the Hendrix mold.

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Brittany Howard

Brittany Howard isn’t known by her name, though her band Alabama Shakes has become a fairly big deal (even meriting some attention at the Grammys). She’s got a little more growl to her than Hendrix, and can at times stray closer to a folksy or country sound. But on pure talent and ability, she’s probably the closest thing we have to a modern, female Hendrix – and she’s still not even 30 yet.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. 

LA's RL Grime Has The Current Seat On EDM's Throne

By: Shivain Chopra

The Electronic Dance Music, or EDM genre of music can be traced back to the 80’s, with the onset of club culture, but it didn’t truly gain mainstream popularity until the early 2010’s, when the term “EDM” was coined. With the new decade of EDM came the subgenre of dubstep, with acts such as Skrillex and Flux Pavilion making news worldwide. As with all genres, EDM continued to evolve, with dubstep fading and giving way to other sub genres, such as future bass and trap. Although future bass has established itself as one of the most popular EDM subgenres on the scene, counting Flume and Odesza as its most well known acts, trap continues to gain traction, with Baauer being one of the biggest names in the game. A slightly lesser known, but immensely talented DJ is now taking over not only the trap scene, but the entire electronic genre as a whole. Based out of Los Angeles, RL Grime brings hard-hitting, bass-heavy beats that could get even the most timid of people moving.

RL Grime.

RL Grime.

Born Henry Alfred Steinway, RL Grime grew up in Los Angeles, going on to attend New York University for their Music Business program. After college, RL Grime moved back to Los Angeles, joined the WeDidIt collective and released his Grapes EP. In June 2012, RL Grime teamed up with producer Salva for a remix of Kanye West’s “Mercy,” earning over 8 million plays on his SoundCloud. A year later, his High Beams EP debuted at the #1 spot on the iTunes Electronic Chart. Playing off the success of his first two EPs, RL Grime released his first studio album Void, with big names such as Big Sean featured.

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The appeal of RL Grime is unlike any other EDM artist. His songs have a strong emphasis on bass that radiates throughout the bodies of his fans. This, in addition to the use of instruments such as the trumpet in “Tell Me” and exotic samples of voices and other sounds such as in “Kingpin” creates an immersive musical experience. Often times, RL Grime also chooses to use more grimy and raw sounds to create a darker mood, while maintaining the grooviness that comes with EDM. Everything comes together with a gradual rise in tempo, leading to a beat drop so strong that no listener can refrain from breaking out their moves.

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With his exponential rise to stardom, RL Grime recently announced his second studio album, Nova, due to be out later this year. In addition, he just started his Nova tour, with stops across the country, including Denver and Los Angeles (which has already sold out) in November.

Keep up with RL Grimes here; catch more tour dates on his website.

-Shivain

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Psych Rock & Multimedia Project King Eddie To Release New Record 'Holographic Universe'

By: Norman Hittle

King Eddie, a denver-based psychedelic rock and VR multimedia project, is preparing to release their second full-length album, Holographic Universe, this Friday, November 17th.

King Eddie.

King Eddie.

Holographic Universe was recorded at Moon Magnet Studios in Denver and marks the band’s first full length release since 2015’s King Eddie (self-titled) release.

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The band’s charge, led by Jay Mars (guitar and vocals), is further filled out by guitarist Benjamin Buttice, bassist Velvet Adams, and drummer Linton Wright. King Eddie’s sound is reminiscent of some of the more lo-fi Britpop concepts of the late 70’s mixed with perhaps a touch of Tame Impala’s signature modern version of psychedelic rock.

Regarding what Holographic Universe represents, singer and guitarist Jay Mars told BolderBeat: “[The record] is a concept album about reconciling human vulnerability and the depth of your own experience with what quantum science and ancient religions tells us is true- ‘reality’ is an illusion. It's loosely based around virtual reality and the futurism of Philip K Dick and Westworld.”

Jay Mars.

Jay Mars.

The Holographic Universe release party will feature Kyle Emerson, Panther Martin, and DeCollage (DJ set), along with live virtual reality visuals from the DenVR collective. Check out this fully immersive experience at their album release show this Saturday, November 18th at the Hi-Dive in Denver, CO. Event details and tickets here!

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Too Many Humans Releasing New Record 'You're On Your Own'

By: Norman Hittle

I first came across Too Many Humans a couple years ago through mutual friend and sound engineer Chris Andrews over at Monument Sound Studios. Chris was wrapping up mixing their debut record Who’s in Charge Here?. When I heard some of the tunes in progress, I was stunned that there was such talented rock in Denver, and naturally have followed them closely ever since.

Check out their video premiere for “M.F.”:

Coming full circle to the present, Too Many Humans is about to release their second record You’re on Your Own. Unlike their debut album, this one seems to have a more mature and somber focus, yet just like the first record, the hard rock talent is still in full throttle.

Check out their vid for “You’re on Your Own”:

The band’s ability to churn through a series of genres in one song is inspiring, and their ability to cycle through varying concepts while keeping each song fresh is amazing. One moment they’ll be chugging out some 1990’s era TOOL sounding post-rock; the next they’re hitting their stride with some epic early MUSE inspired progressive rock, and the next they’re thrashing out hard rock with technical guitars and huge groove-laden drums with nods to bands like Avenged Sevenfold.

Too Many Humans.

Too Many Humans.

Though the band is keeping You're on Your Own close to the chest until release day, I can tell you the music is well written and well produced. If you like either of the above videos, then there will be plenty more for you to like when the rest of the songs come out.

Keep up with Too Many Humans and their forthcoming record release on all social media. Also, check out their album release show at Lost Lake Lounge November 17th with CITRA, Vicoda, and HR People. Event details here!

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Premiere: Last of the Easy Rider's Release New Psych Rock Single "Unto The Earth"

By: Julia Talen

Denver’s Last of the Easy Riders released their self-titled EP about one year ago. Since then, they have been busy playing shows and writing new music, having recently released a single called, “Goin' Down Slow” in September 2017. Their self-titled EP and “Goin' Down Slow” continue to showcase the band’s good ol’ sixties cosmic rock’n’roll vibe, effervescent of The Band or Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. However, a subtle eerie quality hovers over their most recent track, “Unto The Earth,” expanding upon the group's psychedelic tendencies and echoing obscure nuances like those found in The Byrds’ “Eight Mile High" or Pink Floyd's “See Emily Run.”

Listen to "Unto The Earth": 

“Unto The Earth” opens with funky guitar scale progressions alluding strongly to late 60s and early 70s rock as notes and instrumentation blend with the group’s vocals, giving us a hazy, psychedelic feel. The vivid, colorful, and poetic verses are as enticing as the funky, bohemian sound with opening lyrics, "In her I see greens of spring/softly glistening/coming after me" and “Walking beside my love at dawn/wishing for an endless morning/a crown of violets in her hair/wilting as its warning.” The pastoral imagery enthralls the listener, invoking illustrative elements amidst the experimental guitar scales and chords that build and retract. The refrain "unto the earth we all return/laid to rest in these strawberry ferns/rosemary and white clover" slightly haunts the tune as well, with wailing harmonies and ghostly "ahhs" as we feel themes of grappling with love, existence, and endings permeate the track.

Last of the Easy Riders.

Last of the Easy Riders.

The song is even and balanced with psychedelic and vintage elements as it wanders, tunneling and traversing instrumentally, vocally, and lyrically. It has a kaleidoscopic quality, and though it's perhaps a little different than what we're used to from the Last of The Easy Riders, it highlights the group's versatility in exploring the many realms of rock’n’roll, from classic, country-folk, and psychedelic. You can see the Last of The Easy Riders alongside Casey James Prestwood and the Burning Angels play this song and others at their upcoming show, November 22nd in Denver at Globe Hall!

-Julia

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Rain In July Rocked Their Moon Room Set From Start To Finish

By: Nathan Sheppard

While it was a chilly Tuesday outside, inside The Moon Room at Summit Music Hall, everyone kept warm while enjoying some excellent tunes. For what was arguably one of their best shows of the year, In My Room kicked things off with a bang. Their raw and edgy sound can be compared to Movements, loud and fast.

Coldfront.

Coldfront.

Next was Coldfront, hailing from Ontario, Canada, who put on a solid show with their energetic and upbeat style of pop-punk. They recently released a new album called Float Around that you can check out here. Hot Mulligan, who are on tour with Coldfront, followed with their angsty punk rock, and had the crowd singing along with them.

If I Fail took control of the stage next and showed why they are one of Colorado’s best pop-punk bands. Their infectious riffs had the audience on their feet and the band’s introspective lyrics gave our inner emo kid all the feels.

Rain In July.

Rain In July.

Rain In July was the final band to take the stage, and rocked it from start to finish. RIJ put on a lively show that had the crowd hyped and off their feet. Once everyone was singing along to their songs, they even threw in a cover of “Bodybag” by Hit The Lights. RIJ finished off their set with a fan favorite “Breathe” and a special guest appearance from Andrew Elofson from 1000 Miles of Fire, which was the perfect way to cap an epic show. The guys proved why they are one of Colorado’s best up and coming bands with a very bright future. You can check out their latest EP “Trying To Breathe” on Spotify.

Keep up with Rain In July here and check out the full gallery from this show for more photo madness.

-Nathan

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Colorado Bluegrass Outfit Thunder And Rain To Debut New Record At The Buffalo Rose (11/11)

By: Trevor Ryan

Bluegrass and folk hitmakers Thunder and Rain just dropped their new record Start Believing, and they’re rocking The Buffalo Rose tomorrow night with jazzy folk slingers Masontown. Formed after a summer of the busking life in Seattle in 2011, mandolinist Peter Weber, and vocalist Erin Peet-Lukes would soon become Colorado’s Thunder and Rain, releasing their debut album Hollar Out, and establishing themselves successfully among the Colorado bluegrass scene.

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Start Believing marks a first for Thunder and Rain, as it’s their debut full-length record as a collective band. The title track, “Start Believing,” is a powerfully emotional track with smooth open-sounding instrumentals of piercing fiddle riffs and awe-inspiring finger picking. These sounds are accompanied by the lyrical wit and incredibly melodic vocals of Peet-Lukes, who proclaims catchy one liners like, “Soul is the coal that keeps us burnin’.”

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Make sure to catch this bluegrass outfit tomorrow, November 11th at The Buffalo Rose with Masontown. Tickets can be found right here.

-Trevor

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

The Front Bottoms' Fans Sing Louder Than Yours

By: Benjamin Tillis

On Tuesday, November 7th, New Jersey-based indie rock band The Front Bottoms headlined a packed show at The Wiltern Theatre located in Koreatown, Los Angeles. The band released its sixth studio album Going Grey mid-October, so fans were excited to hear the new songs live. Just as expected, the band began its set with the new album’s opener “Used to Say (Holy Fuck)”. And from there the band played a full 21-song set, a majority of the tracks from the newest release and their 2013 Talon Of The Hawk.

The Front Bottoms.

The Front Bottoms.

Most concerts host a core group of day-one-fans who know most songs, and usually the entire crowd sings the one with the most radio play, but this show was in its own league: no audience member missed a single word. It makes sense though, considering TFB’s most unique draw are its witty and emotional lyrics and lead singer Brian Sella's unique voice that enunciated every syllable. It was clear that the audience truly connected to these songs that they belted out. And it is no coincidence that The Front Bottoms are signed to Fueled By Ramen, the same label as Twenty One Pilots, who also have passionate fans.

The Front Bottoms at The Wiltern. Photo per the author.

The Front Bottoms at The Wiltern. Photo per the author.

The way fans connected to these songs was also interesting. The Front Bottoms definitely does not hold back with its often depressing and dysfunctional imagery in its songs. For example, during the show, Sella proclaimed that the next song was about “drowning someone you’ve been in love with for a really long time.” The songs are sad, but playful, and it’s clear the band doesn’t take itself too seriously. This leads to a close-knit community in the crowd, who smiled and sang to each other, proving that these sad songs are about moving on and improving, not harping on the past.

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Very grateful to its fans, Sella thanked The Wiltern concertgoers multiple times for coming out the the show. Most entertaining was their final encore. Throughout the show, an excited and impatient fan kept yelling for TFB to play “Ocean,” Going Grey’s closing track. At one point Sella even addressed her and assured her that they would play the song at some point. Sure enough, for its encore the band invited the same girl to sit on a couch onstage with the band as Sella played an acoustic version of her requested song. Needless to say, she lost it on stage when she wasn’t taking selfies with the band. It was great to see the group turn a nagging fan, an element that is often an annoying aspect of playing a live show, into a really fun and entertaining situation. Overall it was a great performance and a show that you shouldn’t miss. If you’re not a fan now, you will be after seeing them live.

Catch The Front Bottoms as they continue on tour here.

-Benjamin

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Colorado Americana Outfit The Railsplitters To Drop New Record 'Jump In'

By: Trevor Ryan

Colorado bred “masters of folk” and award-winning bluegrass group The Railsplitters are back with their third full length record Jump In, due out this Friday, November 10th. The band, who have been on the Colorado bluegrass circuit for a while now, first debuted in 2013 with a self-titled release. The record featured 12 tracks of heavily intricate stand-alone banjo riffs atop some very impressive mandolin, guitar, and string work in tracks like “Spray.” Along with this, the record showcased the effortlessly sweet vocals of Lauren Stovel, accompanied by the Harmonic Pete Sharpe, who shine in songs like “Boarding Pass,” “My World,” and “Where You Are.”

The Railsplitters.

The Railsplitters.

This record was followed by the band’s 2015 release The Faster It Goes, which was an exciting follow-up for both the listener, as well as the band, who developed their strong, progressive sound. The album gave us craaaaazy gems like “Goosetown,” which gives a real sense of where The Railsplitters’ talent truly lies as far as instrumentalists are concerned. Along with this, the band implemented a gypsy folk vibe that proved to be an upbeat surprise from their previous bluegrass leanings. Pair all of this with the outright most beautifully melodic stuff to come out of new age folk since City & Colours’ “Bring Me Your Love,” and there you'll find The Railsplitters with tracks like “You,” “Met That Day,” and “It's a Little Late.

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Needless to say, the anticipation for Jump In is HIGH, and is rumored to be the band's most Americana-leaning record yet.

Keep up with The Railsplitters on Facebook, and of course look out for Jump In, dropping on November 10th.

-Trevor

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Winter Is Coming So Snuggle Up To Our 'Cozy Vibes' Playlist

With a few snowfalls behind us now and many more ahead for those of us in states with actual seasons, we’ve got a cozy playlist for you to cuddle your ears with this winter:

Tastemaker Sierra Voss has crafted this warm blanket of fireside sounds for us, which features songs from artists like Leif Vollebek, The Haunted Windchimes, Bon Iver, Hallie Spoor, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Nightsweats, Whitney, and more.

Make sure to follow us on Spotify to check out our many playlists, and if you’re an artist looking to submit your song for playlist consideration, roll to our Contact page and do it!

Stay warm music lovers.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Action Bronson Bringing Blue Chips Tour To Boulder Theater (11/15) & Denver Ogden Theatre (11/16)

Action Bronson, the weed-loving hip-hop-artist-turned-Munchies superstar will grace the Boulder Theater stage this month. Bronson, who is currently touring on his record Blue Chips 7000, is known to rap about his love of food when he isn’t teaching you how to properly choose the right heady glass for your favorite strain of the devil’s lettuce.

Action Bronson.

Action Bronson.

Bronson released his first studio record, Dr. Lector, back in 2011. But it wasn’t until his fourth release, Saab Stories, that Action Bronson picked up steam. In 2012, he signed to Goliath Artists, was featured on an Odd Future track, and wound up joining Warner Bros. Records. He hit Coachella in 2013 and scored his Munchies debut with Vice in 2014. Blue Chips 7000, which dropped earlier this year and is the third release in a Bronson mixtape series called “Blue Chips,” has been said by Pitchfork to have, “cheeky, relentless verses to match the energetic funk he’s best accompanied by.”

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Snag tickets for Action Bronson’s 11/15 show at Boulder Theater here or to his Denver Ogden 11/16 show here. Bronson will be joined at the show by Trash Talk and Mayhem Lauren. Get details in the Facebook event.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

A-Mac & The Height Reach New Peaks With New Record 'Part of It All'

By: Will Baumgartner

The ridiculously talented Denver band known as A-Mac & The Height have made a lot of noise over the past year, with a sold-out album release show at the Bluebird Theater, performances at their own Spread the Word Music Festival as direct support for the Kyle Hollingsworth Band, and a two-month fall tour which took them from the Midwest all the way to Florida. Behind all this activity is the group’s frontman and songwriter Alex MacKenzie-Low, a musically driven young man whose contagious energy not only drives the band, but has been an important part of the Denver area music scene for several years. I first met Alex when he booked my band at Moe’s Original BBQ in Englewood and the relationship has continued through a few years of the Spread The Word Festival, an annual event which is MacKenzie-Low’s personal labor of love and has been a vital and energizing part of the local live music landscape for the past five years.

A-Mac & The Height. 

A-Mac & The Height. 

Having seen the band (formerly known as A-Mac DZ) a number of times, I was not at all surprised to find that their current album Part of It All is filled with the same great songs and stellar musicianship I’ve come to expect from this band. The genre description on their Facebook page- “upbeat folk rock, reggae/world, hip-hop, jam” prepares the listener for a rather common combination of sounds in today’s music landscape, but the album itself is much more than the sum of these parts.  

Listen to Part of It All:

“Sun Comes Up” kicks off the musical journey of the record appropriately enough with a driving mashup of reggae and hip-hop, and a story of finding oneself and one’s family of friends through persistence and music. It begins with hopping on a train, facing loneliness and pain with the line, “‘Til I find my friends, my motivation/Music, yes, my inspiration.” These are lyrics that anyone who has chosen the challenging life of a musician can understand: we feel so much, and life can be so frightening and difficult, but music and the people we play it with makes it all worthwhile. From the drum and bass intro through the masterful rapping in the middle, all the way to the end, this is a great song performed by a super-tight band.

The second song, “Ends I’ll Never Know,” takes us into distinctly brighter territory. If “Sun Comes Up” is about climbing out of the darkness, this one is about dancing in the sunlight. It’s a happily grooving song with a bouncy guitar line that sounds like it could have come from Paul Simon’s Graceland or The Rhythm of the Saints albums, at least to my ears, it definitely has that happy South African/Latin-inspired feel. It’s also a markedly pop-sounding song, with its catchy chorus and hook-driven arrangement. You can practically hear the smile on MacKenzie-Low’s face as he sings “Oh I, oh I, ready for whatever comes my way today/Yes I, yes I, ready to grow to ends I’ll never know.”

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 “Indica From Heaven” is, not surprisingly, a feel-good party track. If weed is your party, blaze up and groove on down. The deeply funky reggae feel, horn lines, keyboard solo, and the lyrics all encourage the listener to just have a good time and not think too much. It’s also one of the most danceable tracks on the album, so don’t get too stoned to get up! The syncopation and breaks in the arrangement make it perfect for busting some moves.

The fourth track, “It Would Be Easy,” starts off in a sadder place. It’s a breakup song with lyrics like, “All our friends know you crushed my soul,” so the musical feel is appropriately wistful, at least at first. But the song is also about letting go, so there’s a break in the middle that suddenly feels like a Calypso/Salsa dance party, with a rolling Latin-sounding piano line and horns bouncing merrily over the top. You never know what to expect with these guys!

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“Streets of Colorado” is a homecoming anthem from a traveler who has gone away, but come back to where he’s from and feels most at home there. It’s the most rock-sounding track on the album, and the band ably supports the singer’s story with another tight arrangement and more excellent playing.

The album’s penultimate track, “Back On My Own,” revisits the theme of lost love while still emphasizing the singer’s drive to pick himself up and keep moving, which seems to be almost the theme of the whole disc: persistence, as Calvin Coolidge said, is omnipotent. As with all the songs on this album, the arrangement is a big part of what makes this song work: the individual instruments and the way they play off of each other, the musical dynamics, and the juxtaposition of different musical styles stacked together to create a balanced structure. The casual listener doesn’t need to “get” what’s going on behind the music to enjoy it, but musicians, songwriters and arrangers will find much to appreciate and admire. 

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And so we come to the final song on the album, “Here’s to the Love.” It’s a testament to the strength of MacKenzie-Low’s spirit that while he’s writing a song as a requiem to a dear friend, he still insists on not wallowing in the pain of his friend’s passing: “I will remember the good times always/No one can take away your memory, so here’s to the love.” You can hear the pain in his voice and in the music, and still, there’s that insistence on finding the good in everything, even death. So, ultimately, it’s not a sad song, but a celebration of life and love.

Again, I can’t overemphasize the strength of the musicianship on this record, and its importance in making it a successful recording. Drummer Matt McElwain, bassist Stephen Edwards, keyboardist Karl Rivers, saxophonist Joey Bean, and lead guitarist Ted Kleist are all great musicians, period. Colorado is lucky to have such talent in our midst, and A-Mac & The Height are blessed by the way they work together.

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Part of It All is available on Bandcamp. A-Mac & The Height are just returning from their fall tour, and will perform next in Colorado on Saturday November 25th at Mother Muff’s in Colorado Springs. Keep up with the band on their Facebook page and website.

-Will

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.   

Danny Shafer Bringing Back Open Stage Nights At New Boulder Venue

By: Elizabeth Lee

Singer-songwriter Danny Shafer will be bringing his Open Stage nights back to Boulder starting tomorrow, Tuesday, November 7th. After a 16-year run hosting the open mic night at Boulder’s now defunct Conor O’Neill’s, Shafer is ready to reconnect with the amazing community he’s helped create over the years at a new venue. Here at BolderBeat, we’ve heard stories from numerous local musicians who started playing out at Danny’s previous open mic night, so his new stage is sure to bring even more local talent together.

Danny Shafer.

Danny Shafer.

With over 200 shows a year on his own, Shafer has been bringing his original country and bluegrass tunes to audiences at venues such as The Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, The Boulder Theater, The Fox Theatre, and Swallow Hill as well as many others across the country. His acclaimed songwriting skills and fingerstyle guitar are a treat to witness in person.

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For a fun night of tradition, community, and awesome music, be sure to catch Shafer’s Open Stage every Tuesday at Boulder's new Oskar Blues Taproom (formerly World of Beer). You can sign up for 15 minute sets starting at 7PM and the music begins at 730PM.

RSVP on Facebook and keep up with Danny here.

-Elizabeth

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Traveling Food Festival 'Taste Talks' Made Their Final 2017 Stop In LA & It Was Really, Well, Tasty

By: Benjamin Tillis

This past Sunday, October 29TH, BolderBeat was lucky enough to experience the second day of Taste Talks. This Los Angeles stop of a national series, which also tours through Brooklyn and Chicago, brought together some of the most innovative chefs and restaurants for taste testing and speaking panels. We stopped by The Holding Co. and the neighboring Medusa Lounge where the events took place.

At The Holding Co. we listened to a few panels on the food space today. Most interesting was a discussion on restaurants that serve foods from countries other than the US. Restaurateurs are attempting to shift away from the label of “ethnic food” that often implies inexpensive dishes. Instead, they want the freedom to market their food as something that is high end and fancy. This is especially an issue for South and Latin American and Asian cuisine restaurants according to some of the industry professionals present. All the panels offered a really unique take on something we may not think twice about- it was fascinating!

The goodness.

The goodness.

Next door at Medusa Lounge’s outside and spacious lot, you could find the All-Star Cookout. With a handful of different Los Angeles-based restaurants and caterers showcasing their best barbeque themed dishes, it was easy to spend a few hours trying new foods and drinks and meeting other local foodies who love chatting about their favorite eats.

Exhibitors included Kato Restaurant, Barbara Jean LA, Broken Shaker, The Exchange, MexiKosher, Bone Kettle, Cento Pasta Bar, Secret Lasagna, Dream Pops, and more. Our two favorites were Abbot Kinney-based restaurant Neighbor and the tent next to it, Wood. Based in Silver Lake, Wood served a wood-fired meatball that we couldn’t get enough of.

We loved these balls. 

We loved these balls. 

If the food didn’t suffice, the bar was pouring Altos tequila and Tecates from the open bar. The combination of the delicious food and drinks made it impossible to not stay until the very end; they were practically kicking us out!

Chicago, Brooklyn, and Los Angeles, keep your eyes out for 2018’s Taste Talks festival dates!

-Benjamin

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Scenic Route To Alaska Release First Single From Upcoming Record & "Slow Down"

By: Norman Hittle

Life on the road for touring bands can be a tough and a necessary evil for the growth of an artist’s career. Spending most of 2016 and 2017 venue hopping and taking the stage in different locales, Scenic Route to Alaska finally had the chance to stop, take a breath, and slow down. Better yet, they wrote a song about it!

Listen to Scenic Route to Alaska's "Slow Down":

The indie pop rock Edmonton-based trio, comprised of Trevor Mann on lead vocals/guitar, drummer Shea Connor, and bassist Murray Wood, said their single “Slow Down” is a reference to their time traveling cross-country and what it takes to maintain one's own sanity in the fast paced music world.

Scenic Route To Alaska.

Scenic Route To Alaska.

The single is the first song off of their slated 2018 LP (as of yet untitled) and marks the first music released from the band since 2016’s Long Walk Home. Though it explores some personal experiences, its guitar driven indie pop vibe makes it an easy listen, with nods to the stylistic nature of Queens of the Stone Age and Weezer.

Having been a band since they were teenagers, and having three albums under their belt (with a fourth on the way), these guys seem to be getting a good grip on making music that's both interesting and accessible for big fans and casual listeners. Keep an ear out for their upcoming LP and keep an eye out for a possible forthcoming US tour here!

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Review: Synth Pop Act futurebabes Bring Us "Spreadsheets In Bedsheets"

By: Norman Hittle

Much like some of our favorite legendary artists, futurebabes came about out of a broken relationship and an artistic mindset to delve into music as therapy opposed to lingering in crippling sadness.

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Since signing to Bandwagon Records in 2015, this Greeley-based synth pop act have been making headway with their drum machines and analog synthesizers that create a nostalgia  of 80s sounds. With a very indie nod to Joy Division and perhaps the Human League, futurebabes presents us with their latest single “Spreadsheets in Bedsheets.”

Aside from this recent release, they have also released 2015’s Day Job EP, 2016’s “Thirsty Man’s Hunger Plea” and 2016’s “Wolves”. You can peep all of these releases on their Bandcamp.

Keep an ear out for futurebabes and their upcoming Colorado shows, as well as a new tune or two as they are currently in the studio!

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.