The Beatbox House is a collection of seven champion beat boxers from Brooklyn, New York. Two of their members, Kaila Mullady and Mark Martin, were in Boulder last week visiting family. Though the duo didn’t originally plan on any local performances, they jumped onstage at The Lazy Dog’s Tuesday Night Jam last week, and were so captivating that they were asked to play a set at the Bohemian Biergarten last Saturday.
Watch a video of Kaila Mullady spittin':
As a duo, Mullady and Martin are phenomenal. Their Biergarten set, performed between two DJs, was an incredible series of swoops, pops, booms, echoes, and bass dropping done entirely with voice manipulation. Largely improvised, their styles ranged from hip-hop to techno to house to straight epic. At one point they fell into a “Sweet Dreams” sample that involved an echoing, almost water-quality delay/reverb in their harmonized voices. For their last song, they asked the audience for a request. One of my friends called out “No Diggity” and they snatched it up. Of course, they killed that one as well.
Check out Mark Martin beatboxing:
For how amazing their Biergarten set was, surprisingly the duo’s coolest performance of the night was yet to happen. After the Biergarten, we stepped over to The Lazy Dog to groove with the brass band Guerrilla Fanfare, who were a superbly funky show. The eight-piece group actually ended their set leading the audience on a parade out to Pearl Street, where they finished playing surrounded by twisting, dancing fans on the rust-red bricks in the heart of Boulder.
Following this, Mullady and Martin got back onto The Lazy Dog stage and began their second set of the night. This time though, an array of musicians joined them for the next hour with some amazing improvisations. A djembe player sparked the madness and was followed by one of the drummers from Guerrilla Fanfare. I then joined them onstage myself to freestyle rap, while Cameron, one of the sounds guys at The LD, jumped up on a drum kit. We were joined by another rapper from the audience, a second drummer from Guerrilla Fanfare (who did an awesome cymbal call and response with Cameron), and a second LD employee, Noel, who popped onto bass. And it kept going! When we finally jumped offstage, we were replaced by one of the sax players from Guerrilla Fanfare and a third talented member of the LD staff, Nick, who busted out a violin. All the while, Mullady and Martin continued their assault of pops, booms, cracks, swoops, and awesome echoes. And the crowd was all in. People cheered for each musician, twisting their hips and smiling as different people took the stage. We only stopped playing when the venue had to close because of Boulder’s curfew.
It’s experiences like this that I live for in the Boulder music scene. For a duo like Mullady and Martin to come through town and spark an exhilarating, impromptu jam was phenomenal. This is a group to look out for every time they come through the area. Check them out at on their website, and give their other members a listen too. And keep up with Guerilla Fanfare’s schedule here. This was a night in Boulder music that I won’t soon forget.
All photos and videos per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.