Hat Trick Debuts Video Launch Featuring Arkansas' Couch Jackets

By: Julia Talen

Hat Trick, based out of Silver Street Studio in Ashland, Nebraska, is a new, promising recording and film project featuring up-and-coming musical artists. The production and film crew shoot artists performing three consecutive songs in their studio, free of charge for musicians. The bands that perform then receive equally split earnings from the video, which is posted on Youtube. Hat Trick recently released their first session with Little Rock, Arkansas-based psychedelic indie rock band Couch Jackets.

Hat Trick engineered a really nice sound quality in this short session. We can clearly hear the builds in each track, the folksy, lineal drum (played by Hunter Law) in “Elephant Tusk (Helluva Musk)”, the mesmerizing, flowing-and-ebbing interlude that carries viewers into the final song, and the unique and essential twinkly layers of the band’s keyboard (played by Harry Glaeser). Additionally, the video and studio’s sound mixing highlight the unique blending of vocalist/guitarist Brennan Leed’s Mac DeMarco-esque vocals with vocalist/bassist Ben Eslisk’s wide-ranging voice.

The session’s film quality also deserves a mention. Viewers don’t just get a shot of the entire band recording. We see different angles of the band, close ups on solos, and Hat Trick’s film quality captures the band’s versatile, super funky vibe, one that’s been described as, “progressive psych rock with a groove that… sounds like an alligator's eating [the band].”

Couch Jackets.

Couch Jackets.

For newer musical artists looking for a sweet studio experience as well as the opportunity to progress in the music scene, and for music-junkies searching for new music, scope out Hat Trick’s creative project and endeavor and look out for more sessions in the near future.

-Julia

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

Stacked All Local Lineup Slated for Fox Theatre This Weekend (07/06)

This Friday, July 6th, the Fox Theatre will host some of Colorado's finest. 

Ashley Koett sounds like Mac Demarco and Ella Fitzgerald made a band and Cuco produced the record. That said, the Boulder artist's combination of slack rock and jazz with "memorizing melodies" is exactly how you want to spend your Friday night this week. We promise.

Flanked by a four-piece band live, Koett is the singer and multi-instrumentalist behind most of her recorded work, which she creates in her Boulder bedroom. She's "not afraid to get personal in her songs" and often "even makes light of her dreary situations" in her music. With a roster opening for bands like Cuco and Frankie Cosmos, it's honestly hard to imagine Koett will remain local for long, which is just another reason this weekend's Fox show should be on your to-do list .

Ashley Koett.

Ashley Koett.

Tyto AlbaCorsicanaAmerican Grandma, and The Milk Blossoms will also grace the stage on Friday. Tyto Alba's female-fronted indie rock vibes mixed with Corsicana's shoegaze is already reason to show up early. But then you add in the shadowy post-rock sounds of American Grandma and the dark pop productions of The Milk Blossoms and well, you'd better just show up at doors. Honestly. (By the way, they're are at 830PM.)

KGNU Community RadioRadio 1190, and Twist & Shout Records are presenting this all-local lineup of stacked proportions and tickets are only $10 in advance. Get yours here and we'll see you at the show.

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

Talking Festivals, Politics, & New Music with Dressy Bessy's Tammy Ealom

By: Claire Woodcock

Dressy Bessy was one of the first bands remnant of the Riot Grrrl movement in the early 90s based in Denver, CO. Lead vocalist, guitarist, and lyricist Tammy Ealom instituted the indie band, associated with the prolific Elephant Six Collective Recording Company, with guitarist John Hill (who also plays with the E6 band The Apples in Stereo), bassist Rob Greene, and drummer Darren Albert in 1996. After the band released four albums, Craig Gilbert superseded Albert on drums in 2005, and DB released 'Electrified' that same year on a new label, Transdreamer Records.

Dressy Bessy.

Dressy Bessy.

In 2008, when Dressy Bessy released their second record with Transdreamer, the stock market crashed, and the band learned the consequences of trying to tour through an economic recession. Then the country didn’t hear much from Dressy Bessy. In 2015, bassist Greene left, and the end of the Obama era was in sight. As a result, Ealom, Hill, and Gilbert started recording again, this time in their home studio. The product of this recording was 'Kingsized,' which Dressy Bessy released a year ago. Since then, the band has toured the country on the frontlines of a new wave of protest music.

Recently, Ealom spoke with me about upcoming shows and plans for a new record. Read on:

So I heard you went to D.C. recently for the Women's March on Washington.

I did, I did.

What did you think?

It was completely overwhelming and beautiful, and I'm glad I did it. It was beautiful to see so many like minded people come together to protest. I'm still in shock with all of these politics just like everybody else. I had never been in a crowd that big before and it was emotional. But you actually did feel a camaraderie and to feel in camaraderie with that many people at once can be overwhelming. It was incredible, and I'm glad I did it, and it doesn't stop there obviously.

What was your takeaway from being in D.C. that day?

I learned that we not in this alone; there are a lot of people who are freaked out and not standing for the way our government and our world is going with this new Trump administration. I think I'm suffering from some sort of post traumatic stress syndrome just over this entire year. Our album came out almost a year ago and we toured the country a couple of times all the way around, the whole time just sort of reaching out to people and just trying to get across how important it is and was that we're paying attention. I was a true proponent of Obama and I felt really comfortable with him as our president. He is an intelligent, calm person [who was] in charge of our country and it made me comfortable. I didn't obsess about politics everyday. Now I do. I wake up in the middle of the night and I reach over and I grab my phone just to check to see and make sure we don't have to put on gas masks, you know what I mean? Like this is such a crazy time.

Tammy Ealom.

Tammy Ealom.

Dressy Bessy dropped 'Kingsized' about a year ago-

February 5th last year.

So coming up on exactly a year after taking a considerable amount of time off, what has it been like to jump back into the world of album releases and tours during an election year?

It’s been amazing. The record came around about the same time civil unrest was starting, so it was amazing because I was able to go and let it out. I live for this shit. I've been doing it for 20 years and we're continuing on. We're planning a new album hopefully next year. I'm halfway there with new songs, and they just keep coming, so I'm going to take advantage of it and get it out there.

Any ideas on what Dressy Bessy’s next album’s going to be like?

That's a tough question because I don't question where my songs come from, I just let them develop like, ‘Okay, cool cool’ and a lot of times I'm not exactly sure where they came from. I don't sit down like, ‘Oh, I'm going to write a song today.’ Sometimes I just get this feeling as I lay there like ‘Oh God;’ it's like a ball of [noise] and I just let it out through song.

Rock, you just rock.

Rock and roll, that's all it is. It's all rhythm and blues.

Dressy Bessy got its start in Denver over two decades ago. How do you see the topics and songs you guys write about and play evolving over time?

Well, the internet was a big game changer. When our last album came out, Myspace was the place to promote your music. So I think [the internet’s] opened up a world where people can get their music out there. One thing, around 2008 before Obama came in, it wasn't feasible for a lot of bands to tour because gas was so expensive and people didn't have the money to go to shows. So that was kind of part of the reason we stepped back for a second too, because that was the way we went out and made a little bit of money to pay our rent. Now there's like a thriving DIY scene that's happening that more people hear about because of the internet. You kind of just take it day by day or month by month, it's like, ‘Okay let's go out and see what's happening.’

That's such a great point you make about the internet being a promotional tool for musicians. A lot of times I feel that my generation, millennials, myself included, take the access that the internet provides for music exploration for granted.

I mean, it used to be you'd have to send flyers out to street teams and you'd contact them through snail mail and then get their address and send packets of flyers. Now it's just as quick as Facebook. People are paying attention and they see [music] that way.

That makes me wonder how the internet has affected both your pre-existing fan base, as well as your new beginning. Because the people who were listening to 'Pink Hearts Yellow Moons' and were turning out for Dressy Bessy shows are a little older now...

We kind of knew that we'd have to rebuild our fan base, which is what we're doing right now and what we have done this year. It's just what we do, but we are finding our fans range from ages 4 to 70, which is pretty incredible. There are literally all ages at our shows, which is amazing. And a lot of our old friends who aren't paying attention every day are finding out. It happens every time we leave a city; the next day we get a load of messages: ‘Oh my God you guys are still going!’ And this happens every day: ‘Oh my God you have a new album! See you next time!’ And then they see us the next time.

I feel like 'Kingsized' definitely lends itself to a new generation of listeners that are looking for or to hear some sort of sanity in music, you know?

I appreciate that. It's a crazy world [laughs] it's just a crazy world. But yeah the struggle is always there and if it weren’t there, I don't think I'd appreciate what I do as much. It makes it real.

So speaking of the internet, your website teases more shows this year. Any idea when and where they'll be?

In March we're doing the Treefort Music Fest, which is a festival in Boise, Idaho. So we're planning to do some Northwest shows around that. The festival invites are coming in and we're sort of just using those as anchor shows to tour sections of the country at a time. Going out and covering the country all at once can be exhausting and physically, mentally taxing. We used to do six to eight week tours and just go do the whole thing and then come back just like [exhausted] you know? We've discovered that [for us] to keep our sanity, it's best that we go out max two weeks at a time, and just do regions of the country, and then come back for two weeks and go out and tour another section of the country. In March, we'll start doing some stuff. And we'll have Colorado shows within there too. We love Fort Collins and Grand Junction.

Awesome, right on.

Yeah it's coming. We're just trying to get a handle on it.

That's great that you're planning Colorado shows.

Oh of course. Denver is great, you know? There's a reason I've lived here for 23 plus years. I've always loved Denver. Whenever I travel, I'm excited to get home you know?

16473301_1311941575534250_2067741229250307108_n.jpg

It seems like everything went really well for Dressy Bessy since 'Kingsized' came out. I know you were sort of going into it without any real expectations, you were just kind of seeing what would happen, right?

Right. Just going in and doing what we do. I mean, if you put a record out and you expect the world to embrace you, you're bound to be let down. We do it because we have to, we don't do it because we strive to be rockstars or to be rich. We have to do this, so whether lots of people like it or not, we're still going to do it. It's a life calling for us. It's satisfying to go out for 300 people or 30 people or three people; it doesn't matter. If [the crowd’s] all into it, for us it’s completely satisfying. It’s like I always say, I just keep doing it, I keep doing it, I keep doing it, and after I'm done I'll have a legacy. It'll all be there for other generations to pick up on and perhaps be influenced by and it's much bigger than me. My music will live long after I'm dead and that's awesome. I'll take that. If the planet's still here, oh my God.

That's very forward thinking of you. So you see Dressy Bessy as a necessary voice in the industry right now.

I always have. My lyrics are always up for interpretation but I'm of the girl power generation, you know what I mean? Just speak your voice and don't take any shit. And a lot of my songs come about when there’s some sort of conflict, whether it be in my personal life or the world around us... it's sort of my way to just get it out. It could be protesting a relationship I have with a friend, or whatever. Writing songs is my way of getting any negative energy that I have towards a situation or a person or the world in general, just getting it out through song, if that makes sense.

Dressy Bessy is one of several Colorado bands who will perform at the Treefort Music Fest March 22nd-26th. CPR’s Open Air reported that local bands Trout Steak Revival, The Still Tide, Bud Bronson & The Good Timers, Dragondeer and Brent Cowles have also made the list. For the full lineup, which includes Angel Olsen, Mac DeMarco, The Growlers and plenty of other big names, go here.

-Claire

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

Mac DeMarco Announces He "Just finished #Mixin the new #disc"

By: Hannah Oreskovich

It’s been almost two years since Mac DeMarco released new music, but last night, the prolifically touring party boy announced via Instagram that he “Just finished #Mixin the new #disc.” His last release, the mini-album Another One (2015), was tantamount to developing the almost cult-following that is DeMarco’s fanbase. Needless to say, the internet went wild after DeMarco’s post.

Sources close to DeMarco have refused to comment on the artist’s plans for new music in 2017, but something tells us that whatever drops next will keep this cigarette-crowned artist reigning in indie rock…

Read more about some of the insane antics we witnessed at one of DeMarco’s live shows here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

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

Mac DeMarco Brought The Boys Club to Boulder's Fox Theatre

By: Claire Woodcock

Okay, I’m just going to come out and say it: It was really weird when Mac DeMarco was jerking off to his band in the crowd at the end of his show at The Fox on Thursday. The audience held him up with one of his hands while the other was in his pants, as he blatantly touched himself to guitarist Andrew Charles White, bassist Rory McCarthy and drummer Joe McMurray. Both musically and literally, “Together”, the song he and his friends close out every show with, became a unified, ten-minute-too-long musical jerkoff.

Mac DeMarco. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Mac DeMarco. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Hail to the bucket hat wearing, PBR chugging, current king of indie rock. Since McBriare Samuel Lanyon “Mac” DeMarco’s 2014 release Salad Days, the Canadian singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist has become a cultural master of the dirtbag aesthetic. DeMarco saturated the Colorado scene this week, opening for Tame Impala at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, playing The Ogden in Denver, and taping a podcast episode with eTown before his last stop in the Centennial state, a sold out show at Boulder’s Fox Theatre.

Justin Renaud of Sunboy during their Fox Theatre set. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

Justin Renaud of Sunboy during their Fox Theatre set. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

The moshing began well before Macko and his crew took the stage. Denver based psych-pop outfit Sunboy gave a knockout performance, with lush instrumental arrangements that gave this relatively fresh local band a crowd ready to lose their minds for Mac. Sunboy put out their first EP this August, Yesterday Is in Love With You, and are still riding that album release high. Frontman Justin Renaud, who alternates between acoustic/electric guitars and keys, usually in-between an enthusiastic “whoop” or two, had a charisma and stage presence that made for a daring and mature performance, before the immaturity to come.

Jon Lent. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

Jon Lent. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

After that, wild doesn’t even begin to cover it. I lost my shoe in “Salad Days”, the second track in DeMarco’s set. By that point, the crowd was in full mosh mode to songs like “The Way You Love Her” and “Just To Put Me Down”, from the 2016 mini-album Another One. Comfort zones didn’t exist after that. College girls launched an assortment of lace panties at Mac, and even broke the fourth wall to deliver him a “crown” of cigarettes. I found my sneaker a couple of songs later, after slamming into BolderBeat photographer Hannah Oreskovich, and the teenage girls at the very front of the crowd.

DeMarco and White's onstage makeout. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

DeMarco and White's onstage makeout. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

The same teenage girls must have had a premonition about Macko and friends’ displays of mind-altering public affection. Gushing over their first kisses, or wishing their first kiss was a Macko kiss, all three of the BolderBeat writers at this show had to ask themselves, “Are we too old, too jaded to love Macko?” The answer is maybe, but we’re also critics.

Macko. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

Macko. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Personally, I’ve always been a little skeptical of magic Mac. He’s been on my radar since his Salad Days EP release in 2014. I’ve taken to tracks like “Treat Her Better” and “Let My Baby Stay.” I’m empathetic to these tracks because they remind me of an archetype I met in college: the sympathetic stoner that’s feeling a little blue about his relationship prospects. But Demarco’s live show aesthetic is much more like a performance of “Let Her Go” on steroids.

Bucket Hat Glory. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

Bucket Hat Glory. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

If you caught Macko and friends’ opening act for Tame Impala at Red Rocks Wednesday night, Thursday night’s show was four times the methodological madness, with singer/songwriter and guitarist Ryley Walker (who also taped a set Thursday with eTown), dousing himself in PBR between crowd dives after DeMarco brought him onstage, just for the hell of it. Demarco and White visibly tongued each other during their behind-the-back guitar solos, and most members of the band were shirtless by the end of their set. Mac DeMarco brought the boys club to The Fox on Thursday, giving all the Boulder bros in the crowd the excuse to go mad, and the rest of us a chance to watch the insanity in splendor and shock.

-Claire

All photos per Hannah Oreskovich for BolderBeat. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Sasquatch Day Three: Leon Bridges Plays a Small Acoustic Set to a Lucky Few, Savages Slay, Mac Demarco Parties (Duh), & The Cure Still Rule

Even with high winds threatening sets, the third day of Sasquatch had its share of awesome festival moments.

Sunday was a rough day here at the fest. The high winds that started early in the day never let up, and cancelled all but the main stage shows. Allen Stone and Tacocat were rescheduled, while Houndmouth, Saint Motel, and Frightened Rabbit’s sets were scrapped altogether. Leon Bridges, a highly anticipated show for many Squatchers, waited out the wind as long as possible, but as threats of cancellations loomed, Bridges actually made his way out to the lawn of the main stage to play some acoustic tunes to a lucky few.

Windy or not, Mac Demarco had a good time The Gorge. 

Windy or not, Mac Demarco had a good time The Gorge. 

Though it was a rough day for artists and festheads alike, there were definitely some highlights:

Summer Cannibals. 

Summer Cannibals. 

Portland's Summer Cannibals were a sunshine and wind-fueled set of rock’n’roll and good times.

Jehnny Beth of Savages. 

Jehnny Beth of Savages. 

The ladies of London’s Savages put on a truly savage performance, dressed in all black. Lead singer Jehnny Beth (Camille Berthomier) jumped from the stage platform into the crowd every other song, making for one of the most kick-ass aggressive sets of the entire weekend.

Yo La Tengo's James McNew.

Yo La Tengo's James McNew.

Yo La Tengo, a band that didn't get the numbers they deserved, were another example of the casualty of festivals booking great bands that get overlooked by the crowd that came for EDM.

Kaleo.

Kaleo.

Kaleo was an unexpected set to stumble on, and a nice surprise. The Icelandic troubadour sounded like a sweeter, prettier, modern-day Hank Williams. His steel guitar was gorgeous, and his playing was beautiful too.

Mac Demarco.

Mac Demarco.

Party boy Mac Demarco lured what seemed like the biggest crowd of the day, possibly due to the timing of the main stage closure, and possibly from people expecting another set like Ty Segall’s.

The Cure.

The Cure.

With the pinnacles of day three over, the sun set across The Gorge and evening entertainment began. Unfortunately, either people lost hope that shows would resume for the night after all of the day’s cancellations, or the majority of Squatchers don't know who The Cure are, because the night’s closing act played to a surprisingly thin crowd. Scheduled for a two hour set, The Cure played just an hour and fifteen minutes chock-full of hits. The sound was incredible; Robert Smith’s voice was just as smooth and perfectly toned as ever. They were true professionals and it was definitely a great performance, but it was a disappointing turnout.

Here’s to hoping the wind dies down for the final stretch. We’ll keep you posted!

All content per Kaitlin Summer for BolderBeat.

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