The Ivories Want To Be Your Valentine This Year

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Los Angeles trio The Ivories identify their sounds as “indie surf psychedelic punk.” The band, who are signed to Vogue House Sounds, came together after meeting in college. The diversity of their backgrounds may explain why their style encapsulates several genres, so we sat down to talk with the three-piece about the music they grew up on, the atmosphere they try to create in their live shows, and why it’s appropriate that their debut EP will drop on Valentine’s Day this year.

Let’s start with a bit about your background. Where are you all from and how has that environment shaped your music?

Erin: I’m from Zaragoza, Spain. I remember starting to have some kind of interest for music when my aunt made a Spotify playlist for me when I was around 12 years old. It had songs from David Bowie, The Cure, The Doors… I thought it was sick! And then my family gave me my first guitar and I started playing music. One of the first albums that I discovered was The Rise And Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars by David Bowie and it blew my mind. Later on I started digging a little bit more into Jack White, Queens of the Stone Age, and also Spanish rock thanks to my group of friends back home. Rock’n’roll baby!

Bryan: I’m from Santa Fe, New Mexico. My mother’s from South Korea and my father is from Texas, so I got a lot of different cultures growing up. Before I knew how to use the internet, it was mostly my family’s CDs (Michael Jackson, Korean music, and my dad’s classic rock and blues stuff), MTV, and the music in the Gamecube games that I listened to. The first CD I ever bought was Rage Against the Machine’s self-titled record. Everyone around me in Santa Fe was self-loathing and depraved for the most part. I did a lot of crazy things- I traumatized myself by choice and had like 20 ego deaths from ‘shrooms by the time I was 17. I developed anxiety from all of that and then I started writing music that actually had some substance.

Xavier: I was born and raised in Denver, Colorado to a large family whose taste in music spans far and wide. I grew up surrounded by many amazing musicians who have inspired me to pursue my dreams. My earliest memories as a child were being in my father’s studio watching him record his EP. I was intrigued by the work he was doing and wanted to do the same thing. My parents had a nasty divorce that affected me for quite awhile as a child; as a result I was exposed to many things a kid were not supposed to see nor comprehend, so I became frustrated with the world around me. A few months after the dust settled I was gifted my first drum kit at the age of nine and found my escape from reality. I was able to take all of my angst and frustration and release them through rhythm.  

How did the three of you meet and start making music together?

Xavier: We met in one of our classes while attending college in Los Angeles and proceeded to form a band based on our mutual interest in music.

Listen to “Red”:

Talk to us about your newest single and your upcoming EP.

Xavier: We’re planning to release our EP on Valentine’s Day. We just put out our first song from the record, “Red.” I think we’re making a video for it soon- we’re working with the incredible Italian filmmaker Caterina Piccardo. We have SO many songs written that we want to record!! Making music takes so long though. We’re playing a bunch of shows in the next few months as well.

Beyond the artists you mentioned listening to growing up, who do you draw inspiration from for The Ivories sound?

Bryan: If Kurt Cobain and Paul McCartney had a baby and they were raised by Talking Heads’ grooves- that’s us. We cover a few artists like P.H.F (a New Zealand band we love), Blondie, Blur, and Violent Femmes. I also kinda wanna be Morrisey. The Cure is a big one. When people hear us play live, they usually compare us to The Smiths, The Cure, The Beatles, and The Pixies, which is one of the reasons our band name is what it is. I loved the Tony Hawk [video] games and skating when I was a kid too, so definitely those soundtracks influenced me.

Xavier: As a kid, my parents as well as my uncle inspired me to play the drums. Seeing them play music made me want to do the same thing. When I first started playing drums and bass I received a copy of Death From Above’s “You’re A Woman I’m A Machine,” and was immediately hooked- from that point on I knew I wanted to be a musician. I loved the high energy rock’n’roll and was determined to re-create that emotion in my music. I draw a lot of inspiration from disco/punk influenced bands such as LCD Soundsystem, Death From Above, and Moving Units.

Erin: When I was in Spain there were not a lot of women playing music in the young music scene of my town. And since I moved to LA, I’ve been finding so many bands fronted by women, which made me feel super inspired and empowered to keep writing music. Bands like Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Savages, The Kills, or The Runaways have been pretty important in my life lately. And also the LA scene is amazing- I love to go to shows of small LA bands and get to know what their sound is and how can I add it into my music.

The Ivories.

The Ivories.

When you perform live, what type of environment are you trying to cultivate?

Xavier:  When we perform live, we want to pull people away from their thoughts, concerns, and troubles. We seek to make people feel euphoric as they witness one of the most raw forms of human expression known to man and woman.    

Bryan: I’m trying to make everyone in the audience feel like I’m their Valentine. All the songs are about a girl, and I’m singing them all in first person like I’m talking to that girl... disassociated and detached… a whisper in your ear when in reality, I’m screaming into a microphone. It’s weird. I feel like coming to our live show is like being my counselor and just listening to me talk about all my problems. All the lyrics I write are kinda self-loathing and sad, but people dance and that makes me feel good and I guess that’s what matters!

What about your music most makes you feel most empowered?

Bryan: Being able to tell people things that I would never otherwise express. Whenever I get nostalgic and reminisce back to something, a big part of how I remember it is what music was playing at the time of the memory. I even associate people with certain songs and albums. I’d love for someone to feel that was about my music. I often overthink when something doesn’t go my way, so writing songs is a good way to channel that anxiety into a tangible form so that I can release it all and get it out of my mind. I take stressful or traumatic experiences and analyze them in a third-person kind of way to take myself out of the equation and try and look at it from a different perspective. I notice little details and little gestures or expressions that made something go the way it did, you know? Writing is a good way to process things- healthier than drowning it or bottling it up.

Erin: The fact that there’s music that can make you go back to one time of your life when you were having a similar sentiment- it’s amazing to me. And being able to make people feel that blows my mind. Also, just being on a stage makes me feel so powerful. It’s the moment that we have to show the best part of ourselves.  

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Outside of the glory and fame of celebrity, where do you see your music going?

Bryan: I want our music to be in the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 soundtrack.

What are your plans for 2018?

Xavier: As we play more shows and just get to know each other better, we start meshing our ideas together more. Our music past this first EP is going to be much more collaborative and live-sounding; more how we initially imagined our sound being.We want to play some festivals this summer but we’ve been so caught up finishing our EP, making this music video, and playing shows that we haven’t been looking beyond that very much!

Bryan: I wanna put out at least two more EP’s, a few music videos, and I wanna have some kind of event that will put together fashion, visual art, and music. I also want to become truly happy independently this year.

Solid goals. When are your next few booked shows/tours?

Bryan: Our next show is at Harvard & Stone in Thai Town in LA on the 21st of February.

Keep up with The Ivories on Facebook.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

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

The Halloweekend Six: Six Shows to See 10/28 & 10/29

By: Hannah Oreskovich

It’s been a minute Sixers! But we had to give you a Halloweekend guide, so party down at these spots in your best costumes this weekend:

Today (Friday 10/28):

In The Whale EP Release with One Flew West, CITRA, & Loretta Kill at Larimer Lounge in Denver 8PM-Close

In The Whale.

In The Whale.

Denver’s In The Whale have been traveling around the state this month in support of their new EP Quicksand, which you should definitely peep below. Tonight, the rock duo will be blasting the walls at the Larimer in a show of ghoulish delight that screams happy heavy Halloweekend. The always entertaining One Flew West will share the stage for the evening, along with Denver favorite CITRA, and rock duo Loretta Kill. Come dressed as a beardbanger and get ready to party.

Hand your zombie ears over to In The Whale’s new EP Quicksand:

Ben de la Cour, The Heartstring Hunters, Alex Maes, & Theresa Peterson at The Walnut Room in Denver 8PM-Close

Ben de la Cour.

Ben de la Cour.

Denver’s Walnut Room will be full of haunting vocals tonight, ready to launch you into all that is Halloweekend. Folk artist Ben de la Cour will headline the evening, with opening appearances by Boulder’s The Heartstring Hunters and Theresa Peterson, plus Salida’s Alex Maes. Sounds like a chilling good time to us.

Give Ben de la Cour’s Midnight in Havana a deep, dark listen:

Whiskey Autumn’s Halloween Bash at The No Name Bar in Boulder 10PM-Close

Whiskey Autumn.

Whiskey Autumn.

Boulder’s Whiskey Autumn are holding down our favorite Boulder joint tonight, where rumor has it the vibes of legends past will make eerie appearances, including our favorite grunge god Kurt Cobain. The winds have whispered something about Prince too. Roll over and dance with this indie pop rock trio while you sip on all your favorite spirits…

Get your creepy carnival on with Whiskey Autumn’s “Coney Island” video from CPR:

Tomorrow (Saturday 10/29):

The Great Halloween Pumpkin Bash Block Party at Deviant Spirits in Boulder 630PM-Close

Kronen Band.

Kronen Band.

Deviant Spirits Distillery is hosting one trick or treatful celebration tomorrow night with J Wells Brewery, Rowdy Mermaid Kombucha, and The French Twist Food Truck. The music planned is equally sweet, with performances by Last Minute Blues Band, Kronen Band, and Emmanuel Dali on the books. Who needs candy when you can brews?

The visuals in Kronen Band’s “Artfully Answered” will get your Halloweekend tripppin’:

Ultraween6 Presents: Bud Bronson & The Good Timers, The Velveteers, & DJ E-Trane at Azatlan Theater in Denver

BBGT.

BBGT.

Our friends over at Ultra5280 are throwing a massively cool monster bash this Halloweekend. Performances by Bud Bronson & The Good Timers, The Velveteers, and DJ E-Trane will melt you. And if you roll VIP (which why not, Halloweenie?) there is a fashion show, goodies, a meet and greet, and more. Get other details plus tickets right here to party at this Denver haunt.

Rock your skulls out to Bud Bronson & The Good Timers’ Fantasy Machine:

Tenth Mountain Division’s Boogie Nights Halloween with Guerilla Fanfare at The Lazy Dog in Boulder 10PM-Close

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Mustaches have been grown, extremely tight pants will be worn, and Boulder’s Tenth Mountain Division will be throwing one crazy ski rock party at The Lazy Dog tomorrow night. Guerilla Fanfare will join the crew on horns for the Boogie Nights-themed bash, which will feature music from the iconic film and a number of the band’s originals. Feast on that.

Boogie down to TMD’s “Storm of the Century”:

Can’t wait to creep with you Colorado! Happy Halloweekend!

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

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

The Laughing Goat Has Live Music Every Night of the Week

By: Hannah Oreskovich

The LG has music happening all the time and you should check it out.

Nightly music. It’s what we live for here at BolderBeat.

So this week, we’re bringing you short, daily features on local venues that boast artist performances every. single. night. First up? The Laughing Goat.

An actual laughing goat. Terrifyingly cute?

An actual laughing goat. Terrifyingly cute?

Located on 17th and Pearl, The Laughing Goat has been a coffeehouse-music-stop under different monikers for decades. Rumor even has it that Nirvana played there once when it was Penny Lane. While we can’t promise you Kurt Cobain (RIP homie), we can promise you that you’ll hear some good tunes over a latte made by our awesome contributor Becky. So head over to the Laughing Goat this week (or any) to catch nightly music musings.

Here’s their schedule for the next few days:

Monday July 6th - Poetry Night (8-11pm)

Get ready for the beat generation kids.

The ‘So, You're a Poet’ reading series by Boulder's 'beat book shop’ has several Kerouac events on its poetry calendar. Poets who have performed in this venerable, decades-old series include the late Allen Ginsberg... The series has always been hosted by poet and Kerouac School alumnus Tom Peters, owner of the Pearl Street landmark ‘beat book shop.’"

That’s pretty cool. Tonight, they’re featuring poets Anne Waldman, Ambrose Bye, Clark Coolidge, Thurston Moore & special guests. Go hear some rhymes.

Tuesday July 7th - Jazz Night (8-11pm)

For their regular Tuesday jazz night, Denver-based The Stephen Brooks Trio will be holding down the house. Preview them here and show up to dance, read, or Facebook in the corner feigning social-ness while listening to good music.

" Welcome to gypsy indie folk as you've never heard it before." -PM

"Welcome to gypsy indie folk as you've never heard it before." -PM

Wednesday July 8th- Jazz Night (8-11pm)

Jazz night round two. Why? Because Boulder and coffee shops in general love jazz. So if you missed your Tuesday dose, slide over and order tea in a little baby teapot because it makes you feel good. And listen to Paper Moonshine, who describe themselves as “still jazzy, with a touch of bluegrass, folk, pop, and even funk.” Check them out here.

Thursday July 9th- Touring Acts (8-11pm)

One thing we love about the LG is that they feature a lot of touring singer/songwriters. That’s how we got in touch with Miles Wide last month. This week, you can check out Adam Hunt’s “lush, orchestrated, expansive” sound followed by Steve Itterly’s ragtime and folk blues. Sounds like a cool combo.

Something tells me you'll fit into Boulder just fine with that North Face Mr. Itterly.

Something tells me you'll fit into Boulder just fine with that North Face Mr. Itterly.

Friday July 10th- Touring Acts (8-11pm)

Start your weekend with traveling musicians, the first of which is the “mellow and moody” Annalise Emerick. Following her is J.W. Teller from Asheville, NC with storytelling lyrics of Southern life. And the final act is Shay Gestal, a violinist and songwriter who is actually beginning her tour from Boulder to Burlington with this show. Lots of cool stranggs.

Saturday July 11th- One Band Night (8-11pm)

WadiRum will hold down the whole set Saturday with songs they describe as “lush harmony, dark, warm bass and cello, and drums that move from subtle to explosive.” They’ve got some rock happening, which is cool. Did we mention you can get a beer at The Laughing Goat?

How can you say no to this lone star? Bob Cheevers.

How can you say no to this lone star? Bob Cheevers.

Sunday July 12th- Singer/Songwriters

Sunday. It seems so far away right now… But you can catch Boulder musician Brandon Hagen there before you start the work week. He’s an indie-folk artist who has been involved in several local projects. And following Brandon is Bob. Bob Cheevers has one of those names you have to say multiple times in a row. Bob Cheevers. Bob Cheevers. Anyway- Bob looks like an old legend who is rumored to be “one cool scarecrow gypsy poet who writes and sings the romantic beautiful truth.” Go see Bob Cheevers.

So there you have it Boulder! Your first venue to catch shows at any night of the week. Stay tuned as we bring you more venues over the next few days. And keep up on all Laughing Goat events here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

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