Catch Funk Quintet Tula's Album Release Show at Globe Hall This Friday (07/28)

By: Jura Daubenspeck

As the end of July approaches and energies are high, you may be wondering, “Where oh where will I get my funk fix tonight?!” Fear not though, as Colorado’s funky quintet Tula has just what you need. The band will be set up at Globe Hall this Friday, July 28th, to celebrate their album release titled, Follow The Beast Inside.

Follow The Beast Inside is the band’s first ever full-length studio album and was recorded at Scanhope Sound with producer/engineer Joshua Fairman, who is known for his work with Analog Son, Sunsquabi, The Motet, and The New Mastersounds.

Fronted by the talented Brian Duggan (guitar/vocals), Tula is comprised of Josh Gendal (guitar), Jon Ham (bass), Jeremy Smith (saxophone), and Logan Firth (drums). Pulling together influences such as Umphrey’s McGee, Phish, Led Zeppelin, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Metallica, their music stays exciting, ever-changing, and oh so groovy.

Tula.

Tula.

Friday’s release show will also feature opening act KingFriday the 13th, as well as DJ Hug and Frank Asaurus. Tula will perform the entirety of the album Follow The Beast Inside from beginning to end, for a performance that will be nothing less than dazzling.

Tickets for Tula’s Follow The Beast Inside album release show are $5 and can be purchased here. The show starts at 9PM (doors 8PM) and is open to music-lovers 21+.

Listen to Tula's latest tracks:

Check out more details for the event here, and connect with Tula on Facebook and Twitter. Upon release, Follow The Beast Inside will be available on Spotify, iTunes, YouTube, and everywhere that music is sold or streamed.

-Jura

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

Mawule's "Anything" Music Video Is A Shout Out To Fathers Everywhere

By: Jura Daubenspeck

R&B artist and activist Mawule has released yet another powerful music video for his enthusiastic listeners. On June 18th, Mawule released his music video for “Anything,” a single off of his 2016 album, Chosen. Just in time for Father’s Day, the video tells an uplifting, heartfelt tale, shedding positive light on the black male image.

Directed by Mia Ginaé, “Anything” has a cinematic quality that is fine-tuned, crisp, and feels, at times, like a short film. Incorporating shots of Denver’s Union Station and the surrounding area, the video gives viewers a ‘day in the life’ feel that pulls them right into the story.  

Mawule & Kennedy The Diva.

Mawule & Kennedy The Diva.

The video focuses on the love between a father (played by Mawule) and his daughter (played by Kennedy the Diva). With the opening lines “I may not have much, to give you/Don’t have dollar signs, to my name/Money doesn’t mean, a thing to me/So what you see girl, is what you get with me, yeah,” Mawule sets the tone for the song. 

The video briefly follows the lives and relationships of three other fathers with their children, as well as a couple. “Anything” manages to take a topic that can easily feel forced and staged, and make it so genuine that it’s impossible not to have a smile while watching it. The video features real-life relationships, and displays them in a way that is authentic.

Just as in the single, the video features a rap verse, courtesy of DJ Zenas. Similar to the chemistry Zenas and Mawule have while performing on stage, this verse adds a light-hearted aspect to the song that makes it relatable to love of any form.

While “Anything” is a clear shout-out to single black fathers, it is also a testament to fathers anywhere. It proclaims the anthem, “As long as I got you/Baby you don’t need to/Worry about Anything, Anything, Anything/You Know you got my heart/My love is good enough/No need for/Anything, Anything, Anything,” which sings of positivity and the important things in life.

As usual, Mawule’s musical efforts never cease to amaze with meaning. Aside from even the catchiest of rhythms, with each new release, his music continues to set the bar higher and higher in production quality.  

So take a second out of your day to check out Mawule’s newest Father’s Day music video release for “Anything”- it’s certain to brighten up your day:

Credits: Director: Mia Ginaé. Videography: Eric Hernandez. Production: Glenn Sawyer & Rich Veltrop (The Spot Studios). Cast: Kennedy the Diva, Lia Fortune, Zenas Willard, Michael Ill Seven Acuna, Jason Shankle, Lizadelle Teves, Stacy Salas, Perez Ansah-Mensah, Jasmine Ansah-Mensah, Pacharej Nuntanavooth, and Pachara Nuntanavooth.

Connect with Mawule on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for upcoming announcements and releases.  

-Jura

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

Decatur Unleashed Their Dynamic Debut EP at The Walnut Room

By: Jura Daubenspeck

 Last Friday, June 9th, Denver’s Walnut Room was filled with a plethora of drinks, tasty pizza, and a unique lineup of music. The energy was high, and people were movin’ and groovin’ in any way they knew how. The evening celebrated the release of Decatur ’s debut EP, Before The Bulb’s album, and Whimsically Macabre Music’s general impressiveness.  

Stacy Fahrion.

Stacy Fahrion.

Stacy Fahrion of Whimsically Macabre Music took to the stage first, blowing everyone away with her lightning fast piano compositions and unusual twists to well-known nursery rhymes. Starting off the evening with dark and edgy alt-classical music was as fitting as it was eye-opening.

Colorado’s experimental alternative rock group Decatur took to the stage second, and gave a performance that was dynamic and exciting. The five-piece band, consisting of Sean Decrescenzo (frontman/guitar), Tay Hamilton (lead guitar/backing vocals), Quinn Cox (lead studio engineer/backing vocals/guitar/keys), Chris Howard (drums/backing vocals), and Chris Rybitski (bass) were clearly feeling good, as this performance honored the release of their debut, self-titled EP.  

Decatur’s newest EP has a brooding, edgy feel to it, yet the band delivered the music in a way that was clear they were having a great time. Decrescenzo’s moody lead vocals were well-suited for songs such as “Don’t Talk,” “Cold,” and “New Way To Love,” and were paired perfectly with Hamilton’s electrifying guitar-work. The band also played a previous single of theirs, “My Desire,” which absolutely got the crowd up and moving, if they weren’t already.  

Decatur is proving themselves to be a band to look out for, as they’ve already attracted the attention of award-winning producers such as Lance Bendiksen. Their raw, atmospheric energy and fine-tuned attention to detail leaves listeners wanting more even after they’ve left the stage. They also manage to pull off looking generally cool, without the inflated egos. Their EP is available to stream and download.  

Before the Bulb.

Before the Bulb.

Before the Bulb closed out the night with a vibe that was quite different than the previous performers, but still kept the tempo high. The six-piece band, which blended violin, piano, upright bass, drums, and guitar, came together to create the sounds of “gypsy-rock-bluegrass-punk.” It was a stellar combination, to say the least. The band was also celebrating their release of their album, “Opera in the Whale” which is available now.

Overall, the evening catered to many different musical palates, ranging from dark horse indie-classical sounds of Whimsical Macabre Music, to Decatur’s experimental/atmospheric rock, to, as Before the Bulb puts it, “some form of rock.” It was an exquisite evening filled with talented musicians celebrating their months of hard work.

Be sure to check out Decatur’s newest EP (free to download!) on their website, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, and iTunes. And don’t be shy- connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to get the conversation going!

-Jura

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

Get Involved: Mountain Music Collective Founder Maggie Melvin Talks Shop

By: Jura Daubenspeck  

“I live for the moments when I'm surrounded by people collaborating and what everyone is creating sounds good... really good.” -Maggie Melvin

Colorado’s local music and arts scene just keeps getting cooler and cooler, folks. It continues to stand out as a community that is enthusiastic and collaborative as ever. What’s so incredible about it is not just the artists creating music in the scene, but also the people helping build the community to help those artists get their creativity out there. One of those people is Maggie Melvin, founder of Mountain Music Collective.

A Chicago native, but a Colorado inhabitant for the last six years, Maggie launched the company Mountain Music Collective in January 2017 and has big plans for it. It’s a music management, production, and event curation company that strives to showcase and blend talent from a variety of genres. I met Maggie a few weeks ago, and felt so inspired by her vision that I knew I had to help get the word out about the amazing work she’s doing. Here’s a bit of what she and I talked about.

Maggie currently runs MMC by herself, but is also involved in a number of personal project with other like-minded souls from the local scene: “Last summer, I found myself sitting outside, surrounded by a variety of friends talented in photography, music, production, etc. They all work so hard- I wondered what it would be like if I started a company that brought all these people together and organized their collaboration.” Thus, Mountain Music Collective was born.

On Saturday, May 27th, the first-ever Mountain Music Collective presents Community Collaborations, Volume 1 was held at Carbon Cafe & Bar. “We brought in DJs, two guitarists, a saxophone player, and created some raw infusion of sound. It sounded so good, some of it is still playing in my head over a week later. It’s really cool because the guys are still collaborating on what else to create, and the DJs and musicians didn’t know each other before I introduced everybody.”

I can personally attest to how awesome the Community Collaborations, Vol. 1 event was- the blend of funk, electronic, hip-hop, and rap kept the vibes strong and the bar bumping.

Jeremy Smith & Brian Duggan at Carbon Cafe & Bar.

Jeremy Smith & Brian Duggan at Carbon Cafe & Bar.

Aside from running Mountain Music Collective, Maggie also manages progressive funk rock band Tula. The band has been an integral part of the MMC vision, including showcasing their dynamic sound in the first Community Collaborations event.

Tula.

Tula.

“Brian Duggan from Tula has been amazing. Not only has working with and managing their band been a great learning experience, but Brian is seasoned in the industry and has provided me a lot of guidance in the various decisions I’ve had to make so I’m not learning everything from my own mistakes.” Other shout-outs for the development of MMC go to Tula’s sax man Jeremy Smith, DJs Alex Hug, Frank Asaurus, and Mark Igl.

Tula. Jeff Warnock

Tula. Jeff Warnock

Mountain Music Collective’s vision is simple: “Build a flourishing company that brings people together, creates new sound, and brings in a new slice of expectation in the Denver music scene.” With a “limitations undefined” mindset, MMC wants to give voice to hard-working artists of all styles and work to build hype and create more diversity.

“I enjoy the enthusiasm of the Denver music scene. It isn’t the most diverse, but everyone in it is hyped on their own sound or the sound of the city. So many people have something to offer may it be their vocals, instrumental talents, light show skills, production vision, etc. The community that I get to be apart of inspires me most about creating my own company. I want to help everyone I meet.”

So there you have it. Whether you’re a musician, producer, curator, or a curious creative collaboration-seeker, drop Maggie at Mountain Music Collective a line at mountainmusiccollective@gmail.com and get creating!

Be sure to follow Mountain Music Collective on Facebook, and stay tuned for the next Community Collaborations event in July (as well as other exciting community projects).

-Jura

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

Mawule Debuts "More than Music" Initiative Tonight at University of Denver

By: Jura Daubenspeck

 “Music is therapeutic. Music is healing.” -Mawule 

Last time we checked in with R&B artist Mawule, he had just released his striking music video for “Black is Beautiful (feat. Bianca Mikahn and ILL Se7en).” Since then, Mawule’s vision for creating powerful, meaningful music has continued to develop, with some exciting announcements on the horizon. Throughout the last few months, he has been working on his new More than Music initiative.

Mawule. Photo Credit:  Joel Rekiel

Mawule. Photo Credit: Joel Rekiel

More than Music brings music, storytelling, and intersectionality to college campuses nationwide. Using a similar formula to TED Talks, More than Music is grounded in the mission to create dialogue, specifically focusing on topics such as diversity, identity, and individuality.  

Photo Credit: Jairo East

Photo Credit: Jairo East

The inspiration for the More than Music movement came after Mawule released his album, Chosen, last year. After talking with producer Glenn Sawyer (The Spot Studios), the idea to incorporate meaningful stories into his performance sets blossomed, and has since taken off.

Photo Credit:   Joel Rekiel

Photo Credit: Joel Rekiel

When he is not writing, recording, or performing, Mawule works in higher education. Through his role as Resident Director at University of Denver, he comes face to face with so many incredible individuals with powerful, unique stories. Here’s a bit more of what Mawule had to say on the topic:  

“My life experiences are inherent in my music. I write music with one intention: to help people. I use my musical talent to let those who might be going through similar things know they are not alone. We all have stories to tell, and those stories are pivotal to our learning and development. Whether our stories are rooted in pain, joy, anger, happiness, or sadness, there is inspiration found in each and every one of them. It is our responsibility as authors to share these stories, because people need to hear them.”
Photo Credit: Jairo East

Photo Credit: Jairo East

More than Music is set to become a nationwide initiative, bringing awareness to social, societal, and personal issues to college campuses. It will be a tool to help students connect on an interpersonal level using music and storytelling.

More than Music debuts tonight at University of Denver’s Newman Center for the Performing Arts - Elizabeth Erikson Byron Theatre. This FREE event is open to all ages, and will take place from 7:30PM-8:45PM (doors at 6:45PM). The event page can be found here, and registration can be complete here.

Connect with Mawule on Facebook, Instagram, Soundcloud, and Twitter.

-Jura

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

Review: Girl Group Riverside Drive Release New Album 'Serious Business'

By: Jura Daubenspeck

On May 21st, Denver’s newest “retro pop” divas Riverside Drive released their sweet, sassy, and soulful album Serious Business - I’m already hooked.

The musical brainchild of singer/songwriter Rachael Pollard, Riverside Drive has a retro-soul feel that soothes and uplifts simultaneously. Pollard’s heartfelt leading vocals team up with Tia Cope and Mary McGroary’s accompanying vocals to create a beautifully layered sound. On top of that, drummer Nathan Marcy provides just the right amount of steadying beats to match the singers’ unwavering energy.

The album artwork for  Serious Business .

The album artwork for Serious Business.

Serious Business is an eight-track album that delivers just the right amount of folk-ish, pop-ish vibes. It has a nostalgic quality, reminiscent of a warm and sunny day. Stories of love, jealousy, and even a missing childhood pet (“Oh, Tiffy”) are told in a grainy, sepia tone. Just like the closing credits of a film (think driving off into the sunset and never looking back) the album feels hopeful and empowering.

Listen to Riverside Drive's Serious Business:

It’s hard to pick a favorite on this record, as each song induces different feelings. Songs such as “Look But Don’t Touch,” “I Don’t Mess Around,” and “Tiger Stripes” have a stirring, assertive energy. Other tracks such as “Guessing Game” and “Push Me Away” are commanding, haunting, and powerful. There’s even a bonus track (for those who purchase the album)- Pollard’s killer song “Make U Proud” (off of her upcoming album Take Heart) serves as the gentler conclusion to the well-rounded collection.

Rachael Pollard. 

Rachael Pollard. 

Listeners who enjoy artists such as Benjamin Booker or Leon Bridges will love Riverside Drive, as they bring a refreshing twist to soulful, old-timey songs. Their unapologetically strong female presence is invigorating and inspiring for any other women who have stories to tell.

Be on the lookout for Riverside Drive, as they’re sure to raise some hell in the Colorado music scene. Connect with them on Facebook, and check out their Bandcamp page to listen to their sweet tunes.

-Jura

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

The Malai Llama Lit Up The Fox Theatre's Stage Like A Wild Fire

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Spring has sprung, and Colorado has been keeping it as colorful as ever with vibrant sunsets, cool breezes, and music that won’t quit. Friday night at the Fox Theatre was one for the books, as experimental rock’s bad mama jamas The Malai Llama put on a headlining performance that exploded with color and rhythm.

The Malai Llama at The Fox Theatre last weekend. Photo Credit:   Kaotic Design Productions

The Malai Llama at The Fox Theatre last weekend. Photo Credit: Kaotic Design Productions

The venue was packed with new grads and rascals alike, all greeting the weekend with smiles, twirls, and yes- even a few dance-offs. Local improvisational rock group Intergalactic Peace Jelly took to the stage first, inviting attendees onto their spacecraft and blasting off for the night. Their experimental, jam-heavy set was the perfect launching point for the remaining performances.

The second act, Woodshed Red, brought up the energy in a totally different way, covering a variety of songs, with my personal favorites being “Ramble On,” “Nuthin’ But a G’Thang,” and “Colt 45.” The way they incorporated the fiddle and standup bass to create gritty twists to classic tunes made my heart sing.

By the time The Malai Llama took the stage, the crowd was fired up and ready to be wooed- and this band absolutely did not disappoint. There were so many aspects of Malai Llama’s set that blew me away: Jennifer Hartswick’s slay-worthy vocals in the “Immigrant Song” cover, the band’s mesmerizing onstage chemistry, and of course, the incredible lightwork with colors galore. However, what stood out to me the most was their dynamic force that made each song so unique. They managed to fill their two-hour set with so many different emotions and energies, playing songs such as “Allocamelus,” “Gentle Giant,” and “Cockeyed.” They toyed with metal-like riffs, hip-swaying funk beats, and electrifying dance music. Progressions were seamless, and no two songs sounded the same, leaving the crowd feeling satiated and at peace.

The band finished their performance with a cover of Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds,” which had everyone embracing and feeling the love. The vibes were strong on Friday, as The Malai Llama welcomed the crowd acapella sing-along to their closing song.

Jennifer Hartswick. Photo Credit:   Kaotic Design Productions

Jennifer Hartswick. Photo Credit: Kaotic Design Productions

As an established musical dynamo within the Colorado scene, The Malai Llama has fearlessly put their killer chromatic tunes out in the world for all to hear. Their music moves as freely as the wild winds of Colorado, and the even wilder people living here. Be sure to check them out next time they hit the stage!

Connect with The Malai Llama on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

-Jura

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

Premiere: Bo DePeña's Toe-Tappin' Track & Video "If I Let You Go Again"

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Last time we checked in with Americana singer/songwriter Bo DePeña, he had just released the single and music video for his intoxicating love ballad “The Weed and The Wine.” Since then, Bo has cast the finishing touches on his upcoming EP Long Road to Denver and been on the road for an astounding five-month 40+ show tour throughout Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Montana, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

Bo DePeña. Photo Credit: Chris Bohlin

Bo DePeña. Photo Credit: Chris Bohlin

Even while on tour, the work never stops, and the hits just keep on coming. While traveling from Boerne, TX to Austin, TX, Bo stopped in to Austin Signal recording studio to film the live recording of yet another new track, “If I Let You Go Again.” The song, which was written two weeks before the final wrap-up of Long Road to Denver, was recorded with the help of Grammy Award winning recording/mixing engineer Charlie Kramsky and featured Sean Giddings (piano), Pat Harris (standup bass), and Josh Rodgers (drums).

Listening to “If I Let You Go Again,” influences of western swing, country, and jazz can all be heard. At first listen, the song has a simple, bare bones feel, like a piano bar in backroads country. However, the simplicity really comes from how smoothly each instrument- the guitar, piano, standup bass, and drums- all intertwine.

The song pulls from artists like Willie Nelson (circa 1960’s), Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, and Lefty Frizzell. It touches on heartbreak and the “what if's?” strung between the moments of clarity. True to many of Bo’s musical numbers, “If I Let You Go Again” carries a sweet somberness within its toe-tapping rhythms, a combination that makes his music ever so easy to listen to.

Watch “If I Let You Go Again:”

“If I Let You Go Again” is the perfect release to precede Bo's upcoming EP, which will be released on May 26th. Listeners who just can’t get enough can also pre-order the EP at Bo’s upcoming show this Saturday, May 13th at The Walnut Room. Event details can be found here, and tickets can be purchased at this link- get ‘em while they’re hot!

Connect with Bo on FacebookInstagramSoundcloud, and Twitter,.

-Jura

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

That Time I Followed The Hollow On Their CrowBus Extravaganza, Vol. 2

By: Jura Daubenspeck

The Hollow dabbles in the debonair, and gladly greets the gothic, candle-lit sounds of old with their tunes. I had the opportunity to join them on their tour through Northern Colorado for a weekend of music, whiskey, and, of course, brunch up the wazoo.

The Hollow.

The Hollow.

In a city that promotes community and collaboration, Denver rockers The Hollow take it to another level. Last weekend, the band performed at both FoCoMX (April 28th) and Greeley May Play Music Festival (April 29th), and invited their fans to join them on the two-night journey they dubbed the “NoCo CrowBus Experience.”

This was the second time the band offered this all-access pass to its “Crowmunity.” The idea was essentially this: come join us, see what we’re about, and let’s have some fun along the way. The concept of a band reaching out to their fans like this intrigued me, so I joined them on their weekend extravaganza and was amazed at what I found.

The Crowbus in all its glory.

The Crowbus in all its glory.

We headed for Fort Collins on Friday afternoon, forging through the snowstorm in time to set up for their 7:30PM set at The Aggie Theatre. I chatted with frontman Spencer Townshend Hughes about the transformation of the band over the years. Since 2013, they underwent a few member additions, including bassist Ethan Kotel, drummer Jason Hoke, and the lovely harpist Angela Rose Whaley. In its current makeup, the band’s sound may contain similar ingredients to bands such as Muse and Queens of the Stone Age, but has an additional Edgar Allan Poe flavor mixed into it - a tasty combination.

The Hollow commanded The Aggie’s stage, and kept the energy up for accompanying acts such as American Blackout, One Flew West, and The Violet Tides. They played favorites such as their “Pure Imagination” cover,  “An Open Letter to Kim K,” “Catch As You Can,” and of course their stellar cover of 21 Pilots’ “Heathens.” The way in which the band maintained a powerful, yet playful hold over the audience was entertaining and infectious.

Watching The Hollow’s Saturday night performance at The Jager in Greeley, CO felt like an entirely new experience. Unlike The Aggie in its vastness, The Jager was entirely the opposite: an “intimate” basement setting that got “Greeley weird, Greeley quickly.” And yet, no matter the stage or setting, The Hollow managed to command both crowds with their charisma, high energy, and dynamic melodies.

Throughout the weekend, I found myself thinking about what I would write about for this article. I did not document the band’s every word, and instead let the moments of free-moving fingers outweigh the moments of camera-filled hands. I decided to take it all in and allow myself the incredible experience of getting to know a new group of people. I discovered admirable and endearing qualities about each of them, and felt at home in their presence.

Of course, we talked about their music, message, and musical aspirations. We discussed the concept of The Hollow: that death is the only certainty in life, and accepting that inevitability makes life more fruitful and beautiful.

Spencer Townshend Hughes.

Spencer Townshend Hughes.

But above all, I found that The Hollow are a group of passionate and hard-working musicians who are as hilarious as they are dedicated. They’ve got the chops, and will stop at nothing to make sure that in due time, everyone in Denver will know exactly who they are. So next time the group offers up this opportunity, I highly recommend packing your bags and hopping in that van - you really will not regret it.

Keep in touch with The Hollow on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. And be sure to “Follow the Hollow” here to receive exclusive updates on new music, vlogs, backstage show access, and more.

-Jura

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

Review: Joseph Lamar's 'Quarter-Life Righteous' Is As Eclectic As It Is Beautiful

By: Jura Daubenspeck

I’ve recently fallen in love with some music. And I’ve gotta say, I think it’s getting serious.

Colorado Springs artist Joseph Lamar resides in many categories: a singer, songwriter, producer, storyteller, instrumentalist, dancer, and my personal favorite? Genre-f*cker. His debut album Quarter-Life Righteous (released March 31st) is an iridescent daydream, adorned with stunning vocals and introspective storytelling.

The badass album art for 'Quarter-Life Righteous.'

The badass album art for 'Quarter-Life Righteous.'

Quarter-Life Righteous feels like its very own storybook, with 15 uniquely-crafted and intentionally-chosen songs filling its pages. In the album, Lamar plays with double meanings and juxtaposition, all while exposing a common idea. He blends rock, pop, hip-hop, R&B, electronica, and neo-soul (amongst others) to create a vastly unique sound that challenges expectations and encourages expression.

Listen to Quarter-Life Righteous:

It’s hard to pick favorites, but there are definitely songs that have danced through my mind consistently since first listening to the album. “Black Boy,” “Not Gonna Call,” “I Want You,” and “Cosmic Joke” are personal frontrunners, but each song is complex lyrically and sonically. I dare you to find the songs that speak to you most.

Joseph Lamar. Photo Credit: David Rossa

Joseph Lamar. Photo Credit: David Rossa

In his own words, Lamar shared:

“I explored intersectionality and my experience as a black, gay, agnostic, cis-man on ‘Black Boy.’ I kinda explored the female identity (I think we're all both) on ‘Cruel Girl,’ and talked about the absurdity of existence on ‘Cosmic Joke.’ I think overall [Quarter-Life Righteous] is about trying to achieve a sense of self-actualization at a time in life when some people start to settle or become complacent.”
Photo Credit:  Gary Sheer

Photo Credit: Gary Sheer

Quarter-Life Righteous feels dark in the way that we all feel dark from time to time: that dark that stems from questioning yourself, others, and the universe that encapsulates us. It’s healthy, it’s present, and it’s real. The vibrant energy felt in this album is visceral, yet very much cerebral.

Photo Credit: Elle Coxon

Photo Credit: Elle Coxon

Many talented artists contributed to the creation of the album- check out who did what here and peruse the inspiration for each song.

Connect with Joseph Lamar on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. For an extra glimpse into his music, check out the music video for “About Love: Concerning the Discrepancies Between Expectations and Reality” below:

-Jura

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

Review: Steady Dreamin' with Sam Rae's 'Bring Us To New Islands'

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Dive into the sweet, moody sounds of Denver’s soul-folk artist Sam Rae. She’s about to drop her new album Bring Us To New Islands this Friday, April 21st and, oh yes, it’s just what the doctor ordered.

Sam Rae. Photo Credit:  Art Heffron

Sam Rae. Photo Credit: Art Heffron

Performing on the cello for nearly 17 years and composing for six years, this Midwest native has made waves with her eccentric, euphoric, and explorative music. She’s traveled throughout the country touring and accompanying folk artists artists like Gregory Alan Isakov, Brandi Carlile, and pop duo The Posiesyet she’s established her own sonic blend of looped cello, dreamy vocals, and folk/electric guitar.

Sam Rae’s 2014 album Stories from the Marrow left much to be anticipated for future releases, and Bring Us To New Islands has definitely delivered. It is a bewitching 8-track album that is just as sensual as it is disembodied. With songs like “The Let Go” and “Dragons,” Sam Rae’s music bares resemblance to the visual qualities of a Miyazaki film, while others like “Don’t Forget The Spaceship” have a slightly heavier cello and electric guitar-influenced sound. With constant incorporation of cooing vocals and rhythmic looping, Bring Us To New Islands is a meal that can be sampled one morsel at a time, but is best served whole. With each song comes a new energy shift that will float you on to your happy place, in whatever realm it may be in.

It’s time to harness the power of badass women like Sam Rae and join her on her exploration of music as a universal language. Check out her shadowy music video for “It’s Alright, It’s OK” here:

Connect with Sam Rae on Facebook and Soundcloud and be sure to give her new album Bring Us To New Islands a prompt listen when it’s released this Friday on all music platforms. The album will be a precursor to her upcoming spring tour, so keep your eyes and ears peeled.

-Jura

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

Denver's Coastal Wives Stay True to Their Vows

By: Jura Daubenspeck

It’s the kind of music that sounds dynamic and new, but twirls around you with a vague familiarity. It’s the kind of music that doesn’t take itself too seriously, but tells stories that feel relatable and reminiscent. It’s the music of Coastal Wives.

Coastal Wives.

Coastal Wives.

You may have caught them at one of their Underground Music Showcase sets throughout the years, or maybe you’ve snuck into one of their shows in the Denver area. If you’re lucky enough to have seen them play live, you might have found yourself wondering how to categorize their sound before quickly realizing some things just shouldn’t be held to a mold.

Coastal Wives has a little something for everyone. You could label them as indie rock, but that’d be too easy, as there’s so many other sounds sewn into their music. Their sound has a gentle depth to it, and haunting qualities that place you into flashbacks of the storyteller. With vocals that are just the right amount of raspy, and lyrics that you can sink your teeth into, Coastal Wives take indie rock into their own hands and bend it like putty.

Since their inception in 2014, the band has had two releases, Coastal Wives (2015) and Traditions (2016). Listening to the two collections, you can tell that the latter, Traditions, was a more playful, but well thought-out move for the group. The four-song EP has a tighter, fine-tuned quality that feels personal, palatable, and unique. Coming from a group that favors quality over quantity, these releases have left us with just enough solid tuneage to keep us craving more.

Listen to Traditions:

Coastal Wives have been working hard as ever, writing songs and rehearsing every chance they get. They’ll be hitting the studio soon, ready to work on some tantalizing new material sure to please your music-loving ears.

The band will also be performing at Larimer Lounge on April 29th, along with Master Ferocious, Weather Big Storm, and Cool Dogs in the Kennel. So give these guys a listen and be sure to catch them at their upcoming show later this month - it’s a guaranteed good time. Buy your tickets here!

Connect with Coastal Wives on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

-Jura

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

Get Your Weird On at Get Along's Single Release Show This Friday at Lost Lake

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Itching for some weirdness this weekend? Lusting for some tunes that will make you swoon? Lucky for you, this Friday, April 7th is shaping up to be a stellar one, as indie dance-punk duo Get Along are unveiling their single and music video for “Death of a Spirit Animal” at Lost Lake Lounge. They’ll be accompanied on the bill by church fire, Signs and Signals, and Specific Ocean.

Get Along. Photo Credit:  Joel Rekiel

Get Along. Photo Credit: Joel Rekiel

Get Along has been hard at work the last few months recording “Death of a Spirit Animal” at The Spot Studios, and shooting the accompanying music video. Known for their soulful and bizarre sound, as well as their explosively commanding stage presence, the band has taken it up another notch with their newest release.

Unlike Get Along’s other songs, such as “DNA,” “Karaoke,” and “YUKI,” “Death of a Spirit Animal” has a mellow quality that oozes with raw energy and introspection. The song takes risks with its sound and content: it has no clear verse or chorus bridge arrangement, but a mid-song climax that resembles a Shakespearean plotline. “Death of a Spirit Animal” touches upon the painful and chest-tightening moment of clarity that forces one to look at their life from a different perspective and ask, “Do I like the person I’ve become?”

church fire.

church fire.

Supporting acts church fire, Signs and Signals, and Specific Ocean all will bring their own tasty ingredients to the bubbling cauldron that is Friday’s show.

church fire has established themselves as the warlocks of darkwave noise-pop, wielding magic with their experimental electronica. No strangers to the strange, they are often seen donned in masks and mystical headwear, all while belting out screams in songs such as “every toss a tightening.”

Signs and Signals has been creating melodic, rhythmically-smooth alternative rock since 2014. Their catchy, vibrant sound, as heard in their hit song “Fight or Flight” has earned them acclaim, and their fine-tuned stage presence makes their music nearly impossible not to jump around to.

Specific Ocean.

Specific Ocean.

Indie newcomers Specific Ocean bring a young, playful energy to their music. The band all met while studying at Denver’s Lamont School of Music, and have been crafting comforting, dreamy tunes like “Strangers” ever since.

Listen to Specific Ocean's "Strangers": 

Come Friday, be ready to shake off your human skin and let your freak flag fly high for all to see. You’ll be welcomed with some equally killer, kooky beats to dance to.

For more details, check out the Facebook event page. Advance tickets are still on sale for $10 (plus there are some killer t-shirt + ticket combinations), so grab ‘em while they’re hot!

-Jura

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

Review: Dig the Rockin' Pop-Punk Vibes of Joshua James Hunt's 'Open the Door'

By: Jura Daubenspeck

For anyone that digs blast from the past alternative pop punk-ish vibes, Boulder’s Joshua James Hunt has just what you need. His latest release Open the Door is full of head-bopping energy that is catchy as ever.

Since February, Hunt has gradually teased each track from the album, giving them their own chance to shine individually. Tracks such as “Summertime Song” have a nostalgic quality, reminiscent of more innocent beachtime hangs, while others such like “Come On” and “War Is Not The Answer” have an edgier quality to them.

Listening to Hunt’s latest album, I hear hints of influences ranging from Green Day, to Jimmy Eat World, to Rooney. Lyrically, Hunt keeps it nice and simple, letting his smooth vocal style speak for itself. What I also appreciate about this album is how no two songs sound the same. Tracks like “You’re a Citizen” feature more playful and hard-hitting guitar work, while others like “Just A Matter of Time” focus more on power chord progressions.

One track I’m particularly feeling is “Check the Breaker” - it holds its own with a powerful rockin’ melody, and is also pretty sweet, lyrically-speaking:

It was a quarter life crisis

He didn't make it through

Put a bullet in his life

And made a mess of you

Whatever happened

I know it wasn't your fault

He aimed for his head

But he shot you in the heart

Hunt still has yet to release the last two songs on Open the Door. So be on the lookout for the final two tracks, “Beautiful Dream” (3/31) and “Ceasefire” (4/7). Give his tunes a listen on his Soundcloud, YouTube and Hunt’s website. Check out his Facebook page for upcoming announcements.

-Jura

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

Review: Legato's New Single "Tasty" Lives Up to Its Name

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Colorado’s funk aficionados Legato have released their new single “Tasty,” and it sure does live up to its name. But before we get into that, you might be wondering, who is Legato? Well, you may know them by their previous band name, Technicolor Tone Factory.

Legato. Photo Credit:   Miles Photography  .

Legato. Photo Credit: Miles Photography.

Since 2011, the four-piece group, comprised of Bryan LeFever (drums), Greg Kallfa (keys/ vocals), Cameron Canepa (guitar/vocals), and Karl Summers (bass/vocals) have swept the Denver-Boulder jam music scene. In their time, they’ve shared the stage with big acts such as: moe., Dopapod, Twiddle, and Tauk, just to name a few. Together, Legato brings a unique, colorful vibe to their music, tipping their hats to sounds ranging from jazz, to rock, to hip-hop and soul.

After a few lineup changes, TTF decided it was high time for a rebrand and thus changed their name to Legato, an Italian term meaning tied-together. Band member Karl Summers shared his thoughts on this new stylistic shift in sound:

“Our aim is to maintain the energetic musical prowess we've held onto over the years as well as enter a new chapter and direction in our careers.”

Legato’s newest single, “Tasty,” holds true to their new vibrant sound. The 8-minute-long tune is playful, high-energy, and danceable as all get-out. With an almost disco-like sound at times and Daft Punk-type robotic vocals repeating the mantra “this shit is reaaaal tasty,” the urge to move and groove is an unavoidable feeling for any listeners. “Tasty” is the first of two more yet-to-be-released, but highly anticipated singles from this crew.

To celebrate their new image, Legato will be supporting the electro-funk fusion group Kung Fu at the Boulder Theater on Saturday, April 15th. Peep the event page here for more details and tickets!

In the meantime, be sure to link up with Legato on Facebook, Instagram and Soundcloud for more insight into their releases and general whereabouts.

-Jura

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

The Gamits Are Still Killing It, In Case You Were Wondering

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Last weekend, Denver’s punk rock veterans The Gamits came out of hibernation and tore it up, with performances in Colorado Springs (The Black Sheep), Denver (The Marquis Theatre), Fort Collins (Hodi’s Half Note), and in Laramie, Wyoming (8 Bytes Game Cafe).

The Gamits.

The Gamits.

I had the pleasure of seeing the guys grace the stage on Friday night at The Marquis, along with Samiam, Armchair Martian, and Hotel Bar. I even scored a few minutes of face time with three of the members: Chris Fogal (guitar/vocals), Forrest Bartosh (drums), and Johnny Wilson (bass/ backing vocals). I didn’t get a chance to chat with guitarist Michael Marti, but still got to see him shred onstage.

How does it feel to be back at the Marquis, a venue where you most certainly get a lot of love from fans?

CF: It feels good. Our last show was almost exactly a year ago, on St. Patty’s Day Weekend. So it was a big mess, but still awesome.

Since you all got back together in 2009, you’ve released 'Parts,' and also went on a worldwide tour, hitting up places in Europe. But more recently, what have you guys been up to?

CF: We go into hibernation, and then when we get asked to do fun stuff, we consider it and look at what’s going on in our lives, and then we go, “Okay! We can do that. That’s worth getting together and practicing for.”

At this point of the conversation, I couldn’t help but notice Chris super gluing Johnny’s fingernail.

What’s that about?

FB: “Oh yeah, this is a good one too. All of their fingernails get torn up.”

CF: “Yeah, we do a lot of down picking.”

JW: “Playing in The Gamits is not easy!”

CF: “Yeah, I’m about to do mine too. It turns into blood and then it starts to hurt. But it feels cool. It’s like having a little superman shield on your finger.”

Forrest Bartosh. 

Forrest Bartosh. 

The Gamits are obviously widely known, especially in the Denver area, and people clearly have mad love for you at your shows, going wild and all, but what’s a performance like for you guys?

CF: Well, a good one is like tonight. We’re stoked when people are singing along and going nuts. But it’s like any band, crowd reactions and things of that nature. Also, the older we get, we tend to play with older bands. But we stay pretty current; we like a lot of bands. Johnny runs For the Love of Punk; I run a recording studio (Black In Bluhm). So when we get to play with younger bands, it still feels awesome too. It feels like we’re doing the exact same shit we were doing in in ‘98, or generally around that time period.

Who are some of the younger “up and coming” bands you guys like?

CF: Hotel Bar- they’re killer, and just played first tonight. Also The Bombpops, Red City Radio, Russian Girlfriends, and Redbush. Just bands that have been doing exactly what we’ve been doing, working hard and playing good music. Some of the bands might end up more under the radar, or maybe huger.

Chris Fogel. 

Chris Fogel. 

Playing for such a long time, you know the ins and outs, and have established a more mature mindset when it comes to playing music. Some might even say you are “pros” at this. So how do you keep it interesting? How do you keep yourselves on your toes?

CF: We won’t play shows for months! And it’s never not interesting. There’s always something interesting going on- usually something out of our control.

What are some of the challenges you face now that you didn’t in your earlier years?

JW: Not practicing for a while. And if you don’t sing for a while, it takes a bit to get back to it. We’re not a slouch band in the vocal department.

CF: And I’m even a little sore from playing a show last night.

FB: Playing with bands like Bud Bronson & The Good Timers is a lot more mid-tempo, whereas The Gamits are at a turbo level. So when you haven’t done if for a while, it’s tough.

CF: You rip your fingernails off!

Johnny Wilson.

Johnny Wilson.

I also really like the lyrics in your songs, and that is something I’ve always liked about punk music: the poetic nature of the lyrics, paired with a heavier sound. Is that something you guys always like to incorporate into your music?

CF: Totally. Especially if you’re playing “pop punk,” which is the genre we usually get put into. Some of that is teenagery bubble gum lyrics, so I like to combine those with something a little more, as you put it, poetic. I like the combination.

It’s often said the topics musicians talk about in their music is a product of what’s happening in their own lives- is that true for The Gambits?

CF: Write about what you know. Otherwise, you might come across as a bullshitter.

So do The Gamits have any other other releases coming up in the near future?

CF: Nope, just playing shows and figuring out what the next thing is.

Also, I was asked to ask you guys if you have any plans to release your music besides 'Parts' on vinyl?

CF: Yeah, repressing in Canada has been talked about forever. And I’m sure if someone wanted to do it, it would be cool. I doubt that would happen though unless we came out with a new album.

Again, having been in Denver’s music scene for so long, exiting, and then coming back in, what kinds of things have you noticed? How has the scene changed?

CF: Well we’re always involved in the music scene; we’re never out. We’re always doing other shit in other bands besides The Gamits. So we’ve been able to be in the music scene here and watch it grow, and it’s totally different now. Obviously it’s a bigger city and people are moving here, but it’s also still landlocked, which it always will be, which is pretty cool.

So besides the size, what else do you think has changed? How else has it developed?

JW: I think there’s a resurgence to people looking back to older bands.

So you guys have played a number of bigger name venues, but I’d love to hear about your favorite underground houseparty-type show?

JW: Russia was hands-down my favorite place. We’re the only band I’ve ever heard that has done twelve days in Russia. We did the really depressed areas, and went into the thick of it. Most people do Saint Petersburg and Moscow, but we did some of the most insane places, like the early scene of punk rock.

FB: Yeah the kids were like, “What the hell you doing here?” And they’d be bouncing off the walls, man.

JW: They would pick me up and sing the songs, and I couldn’t even play. It was just the strangest thing.

Shortly after this, we split ways, and I watched the guys blow the roof off the joint, playing their hits, new and old, for a crowd of diehard fans.

It’s safe to say that The Gamits are a group of regular, genuine guys who just like to have fun and play good music. So if you have the rare chance to see them play, then peel yourself from your couch and do it!

-Jura

All photos per Joel Rekiel of BLDGBLKS Music Company. All videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Review: AMBIT's New Single "Guest House" Will Take You to a Low-Lit Dungeon of Your Choosing

By: Jura Daubenspeck

AMBIT is Denver’s oozy & bizarre garage house trio that is “a little Chicago & a little Detroit.”

AMBIT.

AMBIT.

The eclectic group has some new music for anyone looking to shed their skin a bit and get weird. With a palindromic approach to creating music focusing on loops and patterns, their sound is one you’ll likely find blasting in a late night warehouse party.

Members Jason Iselin (guitar/bass), Eli Mishkin (vocals/guitar/bass), and Jeffrey Wentworth Stevens (bass/modulations/drums) are no strangers to Colorado’s music scene, playing in other bands such as Hot IQs, george&caplin, Wentworth Kersey, and Morriconez. AMBIT then made their start performing at the Underground Music Showcase in 2015.

AMBIT’s minimalistic darkwave sound beckons listeners to unbuckle their brain and get on the dance floor. Their previous releases, including “heartbeat noise,” “townies,” and “night drive,” incorporate dark and wavy bass beats, melancholic vocals, and splashes of space-like synth. At times, AMBIT sounds a bit like The Faint’s Danse Macabre album, while other times, you could swear you have already heard their music featured in the neo-noir crime film Drive.

The band released new music last week; their single “Guest House” dropped, which you can listen to above. “Guest House” follows suit to AMBIT’s previous releases with march-like rhythms, repetitive vocal commands, and a very subtle buildup. So close your eyes while listening to this track, and let yourself be taken to a low-lit dance dungeon of your choosing.

If “Guest House” is indicative of what is to come for AMBIT, there’s much to look forward to. Keep tabs on the band via Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram, and Soundcloud for future releases.  

-Jura

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

Don't Miss the 13th Annual Boulder International Film Festival's Singer/Songwriter Showcase

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Sunday evening’s Academy Awards Ceremony was certainly one for the books. So to keep that energy up, we’d like to give some love to the 13th Annual Boulder International Film Festival (March 2nd-5th). The festival has quickly earned acclaim for being one of the most influential young festivals in the U.S., featuring a variety of stellar feature-length narratives, documentaries, animation shorts, tributes, symposiums, and much more.

Nestled in the middle of the festival is the BIFF Singer/Songwriter Showcase, which will be held at The Lazy Dog from March 3rd-4th. The showcase will give festival goers the exclusive opportunity to hang out with their favorite filmmakers in the Filmmaker Lounge while listening to great tunes - for FREE.

Ten musicians will grace the stage at this year’s showcase, all with different stories to tell and unique ways of telling them.

Friday’s lineup consists of: Kenny Lee Young, Bethel Steele, Antonio Lopez, Girlfriend Duties, and Bryce Merritt.

Kenny Lee Young will kick off the evening with his soulful, rhythmic acoustic tunes, followed up by the fellow acoustically-driven sounds of Fort Collins’ Bethel Steele and Longmont’s Antonio Lopez, both of whom have been recognized at various independent music award ceremonies. The evening will close with Girlfriend Duties, consisting of sisters Savanna and Jenny Wright, as well as good friends Nils Jenson (lead guitar) and Patrick Smith (drums). With a sound that blends Americana, indie, soul, bluegrass, folk, and rock/pop, they’ll bring the energy right up in time for the evening’s final act, Bryce Merritt. Merritt’s soul-pop vibe will leave festival goers toe-tapping their way out of the venue and ready to take on the rest of the weekend.

Saturday’s lineup kicks off with the sultry indie/alternative acoustic stylings of Bella Musser, followed by the electronic-pop artist Amy Kress, whose story is just as impressive as her commanding vocal presence. The soulful and jazzy Halle Tomlinson will take the stage afterwards, leading nicely into the more moody, introspective John Common’s lyrical grooves. Award-winning singer/songwriter and Youth Educator Melissa Ivey, also known as the “gypsy rocker,” will close out the evening of killer local music.

For a little taste of what’s to come, give the Sounds of BIFF 2017 playlist a listen, and check out the other artists who will also be making appearances at the festival here.

Check out more on the Singer/Songwriter Showcase event on Facebook.  

-Jura

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

A Night of Cosmically Cool Sounds with Denver's SIR

By: Jura Daubenspeck

Last Saturday, February 18th, Denver’s Lost Lake Lounge was bumping with the sounds of a few insanely eclectic artists: SF1, SIR, and Retrofette.

The place was packed full of dancing fools all coming together to catch their own respective buzz. Denver’s alternative hip-hop artist SF1 opened up the night with his bass-heavy beats, and the evening closed with the kooky synthpop-flavored group Retrofette. Sandwiched perfectly in between was the “sexy emotional rock pop” group SIR, made up of Sarah Angela (vocals/guitar), Kim O’Hara (bass/synth), and Luke Mehrens (drums).

SIR.

SIR.

I met up with the band at Cerebral Brewing for a beer prior to the show and chatted them up about their musical journey thus far. After we plopped down at our corner table, I quickly realized these were some of the friendliest, loveliest music folks around. They’re passionate about music, each other, and collaborations with other local musicians.

Gallery photos per Joel Rekiel.

“I moved out to Colorado six years ago because the music scene was so cool,” Sarah shared. “I saw very few female artists, which was weird because coming from Portland they’re everywhere. I linked up with Kim and met Luke one week after moving here, after seeing his band DELLA, who blew me away.”

After that, the band began writing songs together, starting off as “Sarah and The Meanies.”

“I always thought that name sounded like a high school punk band. It didn’t really fit our style then, and certainly doesn’t now.” Sarah laughed.

After some creative deliberation, the band came up with the name SIR.

“We liked SIR because it’s strong, cool and masculine, but also works for a female singer,” Sarah said.

“Yeah, we’re working off of the whole irony thing,” Luke added.

“It fit our style in a way, because our songs are emotional but also very in-your-face.” Sarah quipped.

Watching SIR perform onstage, this emotional, yet commanding vibe is definitely present. The three of them have such a palatable chemistry both on and off stage that makes you wonder if there are some other driving forces that brought them all together. They genuinely have a great time together, and that shows through their performances.

Watch SIR’s music video for “Go”:

In 2016, SIR released their single “Go,” which was recorded at Serenity West Studios in Los Angeles. “Go” carries a message that is simple, yet so relatable to anyone who occasionally needs to take a break from work and drift into the cosmic realm.

“We love to work hard and play hard,” Sarah said. “And part of playing hard is going to festivals together, coming back, and being inspired; asking ourselves what we learned from that festival. All of us have these busy lives that hold us down. But we’re the ones who let it hold us down from chasing our dreams. So that’s why we escape that for a bit and go to places where we can free ourselves.”

Sarah Angela of SIR. Photo Credit: Joel Rekiel of BLGBLKS MUsic

Sarah Angela of SIR. Photo Credit: Joel Rekiel of BLGBLKS MUsic

SIR is currently on their GO COLORADO tour, hitting up various Rocky Mountain hot spots. Saturday evening’s show was their second stop on this tour, and it’s safe to say it was a huge success.

Sarah’s soul-crushing, electrifying vocals, Kim’s groovy bass rhythms, and Luke’s hard-hitting drums make SIR more than just catchy music to the table. With influences ranging from West Coast hip-hop and rap, to Otis Redding-esque soul, their unique and otherworldly demeanor make them a must-see band.

Thankfully, SIR has got some piping hot new music dropping in the next few months. They’ll be releasing their newest single and music video “Hate and Darkness” this spring. In the meantime, catch them at one of their upcoming GO COLORADO shows and check out their music video for “Go” above.  

-Jura

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

Get Your Funk Fix at SYLVA's Debut Show This Saturday at Boulder's Shine

By: Jura Daubenspeck

As they say, a little funk never hurt nobody. And I’d even go further as to say that putting on those dancing shoes and wiggling around to some groovy beats is bound to make your life a little bit better.

This Saturday, February 18th, Boulder’s “stealth funk” jammers SYLVA are making their debut performance at Shine, along with fellow funk rockers Breaking Spaces.

SYLVA.

SYLVA.

Founded in 2008 by bassist/producer Tony Dickinson and vocalist Travis Moberg, SYLVA evolved and shifted until 2015, when longtime friend and jazz drummer Pat Lewis, and guitarist Peter Lacis joined the gang. Since then, the band has played with the sounds of progressive rock/fusion, incorporating catchy hooks, tight grooves, and plenty of tasty bass. Lacis’ guitar solos are spicy enough to make even the most stoic folk cry, and there’s enough synth in their songs to make your hair follicles tingle. But don’t take my word for it. See it for yourself in SYLVA’s live recording of “Brix of Funk.”

Breaking Spaces.

Breaking Spaces.

Joining SYLVA on stage is the Boulder-grown group Breaking Spaces, who keep it fun, fresh, and synthy at all times, especially at Red Rocks’ Bus to Show parking lot parties. Comprised of Neal Behrendt (keys/guitar), Kyle Bergen (drums), Mike Bruin (saxophone), and Robin Powers (bass/synth), the band has a sound and vibe that bursts with energy and soul.

Saturday’s performance is not one to miss for all you funkadelic hooligans out there. In addition to the sweetest music being played, artist Mick Tresemer will be live painting during the show for a total full-sensory experience.

But wait, there’s more! In honor of the new music SYLVA has been working on these past few months, the band will be giving away an exclusive copy of their four-song EP to one lucky attendee.

So grab your tickets now and get yourself to Shine on Saturday, February 18th to catch these cool cats making insane noises with their instruments. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door. Peep the official event page here!

-Jura

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