Good Charlotte's Albuquerque Stop Was One of Their Last on the 'Generation Rx' Tour, But Also One of Their Best

By: Ryan Schultz

Good Charlotte's Albuquerque stop on their Generation Rx tour was a performance that fans won’t soon forget. It started with The Dose, who opened the night with a great showcase of their musical ability. With only two members- vocalist/guitarist Indio Downey and drummer Ralph Alexander- I was surprised and amazed at the fullness of their sound. With Indio covering the vocals and guitar and Ralph handling the drums and basslines using synth add-ons to his kit, The Dose had a sound that I would describe as a heavier Nirvana. They’re a group I would choose to see live over and over again.

Knuckle Puck.

Knuckle Puck.

Knuckle Puck was up next. Hailing from Chicago, this group was full of energy, and put on an amazing show. They even wore Lobos jerseys onstage to show support for our local sports team, which fans admired.

Unfortunately, Sleeping With Sirens had to cancel this stop due to personal reasons. So after Knuckle Puck, it was time for Good Charlotte to take the stage, and their set was amazing in a few ways. First, the visual and audio production was superb, and honestly one of the best-looking shows I’ve been to recently. Secondly, vocalist Joel Madden made it a point to interact with the crowd, giving small speeches between a few songs to talk about the band’s story and the meaning of some of their songs. The packed venue sang along to every song the group played, and the overall experience was something I would recommend to anyone who has been a fan of this band.

The Generation Rx tour wraps up in North America this month, but picks up again in Europe starting on February 1st. You can check out those upcoming dates here.

And if you’re curious about Good Charlotte’s recent Denver stop, check out our coverage of that show at this link.

-Ryan

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.

Why Rock'n'Roll Won at This Year's KAABOO Del Mar Festival

KAABOO Del Mar. Photo per Alive Coverage.

KAABOO Del Mar. Photo per Alive Coverage.

This past weekend, KAABOO Del Mar Festival returned for its fourth year of bringing Southern California music fans together to celebrate and dance to musicians of all genres. Katy Perry brought the pop, Wiz Khalifa and Post Malone brought the hip hop, and Earth, Wind & Fire and Tower of Power brought the funk. But even with these star-studded artists, it was evident that rock’n’roll stole the show this year to make the point that while your streaming service might disagree with us, rock’n’roll is alive and well.

Friday, the first day of the festival, Jimmy Eat World took the stage and set the precedent that although there were a handful of bands performing at the festival that haven’t seen a huge hit in the last decade or so, it does not mean they’re no longer making great music and giving one-of-a-kind live shows. Of course Jimmy Eat World stirred up plenty of energy in the crowd when they played classics like “Sweetness” and “The Middle,” but the group still received plenty of positive reception when they played their 2018 release “Love Never,” a song that seems to captivate everything people love about the band while still providing something new and never-before-heard.

Later on in the day, Calabasas, California band Incubus began their late afternoon set with zero apologies. Lead singer Brandon Boyd opened with arguably two of Incubus’ most rambunctious songs: “Anna Molly” and “Megalomaniac.” The energy stayed constant thereafter. For a group that has released only 40-minutes of new music in the past six years, it was surprising that the younger attendees of the festival were jumping and singing as if it was their favorite band growing up. It goes to show that these rock legends have created songs that remain memorable in the collective consciousness of American rock music.

Foo Fighters. Photo per Alive Coverage.

Foo Fighters. Photo per Alive Coverage.

To close out Friday night, Nirvana-alum-turned-Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl embodied rock’n’roll throughout the band’s set. It wasn’t just the classics he was playing that proved his incredible reign as a rock lord- originals like “Learn To Fly” and covers like Queen’s Another One Bites the Dust” were heard- but the sheer confidence and appearance that he was hardly trying, yet epicly succeeding in firing the crowd up really amped things up. At one point, teasing at his legendary status, Grohl yelled to the crowd, “We have 35 minutes left to play 116 songs!” At another point in the band’s set, a train loudly passed by, distracting the band and fans. Seizing the moment, the band played a one minute blues-sounding song just for kicks. It was just another example that proved these performers are professionals, and are still as lively and fun as ever.

Saturday was another rock-filled festival day, and this time with more of a focus on rock that is currently popular. Early in the day, Austin groove rock band Mamafesta brought a completely new style to the Del Mar Fairgrounds. With a hint of funk and plenty of jam band qualities in their sound, this melodic four piece group is one to definitely watch out for in the near future if you’re not already!

Imagine Dragons. Photo per Alive Coverage.

Imagine Dragons. Photo per Alive Coverage.

Closing out the second night were international stars Imagine Dragons. It seemed that the band played hit after hit for a full 90-minute set. Not only was the music good, but lead singer Dan Reynolds was simply inspiring. Speaking out about mental illness and suicide prevention, he acted as a true leader to the younger fans in the crowd. After his words of wisdom, once again the group got the crowd jumping with the epic number “Believer.

Sunday closed out with, you guessed it, even more rock, this time both new and old. Many fans stayed at the “MGM Resorts Grandview” stage from 3:00PM to festival close to see bands like The All American Rejects, Alice In Chains, and Robert Plant.

The All American Rejects did a great job of not taking themselves too seriously. Although the band played fan favorites like “Gives You Hell” and “It Ends Tonight,” they joked between songs that while they may not getting much radio play now, in the early 2000s, it was “hard to escape our music if you walked in a TJ Maxx.” Still, the group gave it their all and played new songs that they were clearly proud to perform.

Following All American Rejects was Alice In Chains, a band that had a larger crowd considering the KAABOO attendees were a bit older than other festivals. Alice In Chains did not disappoint, and it is safe to say that their hit song “Rooster” had the loudest-singing crowd of the festival.

Robert Plant. Photo per Alive Coverage.

Robert Plant. Photo per Alive Coverage.

As exhibited by a large number of KAABOOers walking around sporting Led Zeppelin and Robert Plant shirts, it was clear that Plant was the most anticipated act of Sunday, even while competing with Katy Perry during the headlining time slot. It was no surprise that Plant payed homage to Led Zeppelin by opening up with the tracks “Good Times, Bad Times” and “Lemon Song.” His 13-song setlist was filled with impressive guitar solos and a little headbanging. Closing with an artist from the iconic Led Zeppelin was the nail in the coffin that rock stole the show this year at KAABOO, and a sign that this genre will hopefully continue thriving at this festival!

Dates for 2019’s KAABOO have already been announced for the weekend of September 13th-15th. Get your early bird tickets and festival passes here! 

-Ben

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

Backseat Vinyl Talk To Us About Flipping Their Sound & What's In Their Name

By: Nathan Sheppard

Backseat Vinyl are a two-piece outfit made up of Nate Fuller (guitar) and Keenan Clarke (drums) who are paving their way into Denver’s music scene with their unique sound. The band was originally a metal/punk act four years ago when the duo started the band as a side project. But shortly after, the guys did a 180 and flipped their sound.  

Backseat Vinyl.

Backseat Vinyl.

“We initially started out with a very 90s grunge sound, but after getting tired of it, we began to evolve into a more indie style and have been perfecting the craft since,” says Keenan.

Although they changed up their style, you can still hear punk crafts in their music, especially with the drums on their newest single “Swing On By,” and with the guitar riffs in “Greaser.”

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When asked about their musical influences, the band names Nirvana, Vampire Weekend, Wavves, The Frights, and Hippo Campus. And when it comes to songwriting, Nate said that he “just uses everyday experiences and how they affect you and make you feel” as inspiration. This style gives them a very raw feel that people are able to relate to easily, and the duo’s fun-loving and carefree attitude is a breath of fresh air in a scene where some bands can take themselves too seriously. This demeanor was most evident when I asked about the backstory of the band’s name.

“When brainstorming a new band name on the drive back home from a studio session, Nate and I were in mutual agreement that we wanted the first part of the name to be ‘Backseat’ because I always had a plethora of trash in the backseat of my car. We combined it with ‘Vinyl’ when trying to think of words that paired well together and rolled off the tongue.”  said Keenan.

Backseat Vinyl (5).jpg

The duo was recently featured on Channel 93.3’s locals-only show, which in Keenan’s words, “was a cool experience… hearing that other people listened [to us] on the radio and to get that kind of exposure is great.” Backseat Vinyl also played the Moon Room this month, one of their biggest shows to date, opening for New Jersey band Prawn. The guys have four singles on Bandcamp with an an album in the works, and have some studio time planned later in the year. In the meantime, you can catch Backseat Vinyl March 23rd at Streets of London Pub with Sadgirl and Bruiser Queen. Tickets here.

Nate and Keenan have a great musical chemistry with one another to create songs that you can just jam out to. Keep up with the band here.

-Nathan

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.

Television Generation's 'Peel' Is About Your Lonely Life As A Millenial

By: Norman Hittle

Denver’s own apathetic indie-rockers Television Generation are back on the scene with the same attitude and a new EP.

Check out Peel below:

The new music was released December 8th, 2017 through At Night Group. According to the band: “Peel is a 7-song excursion through the eyes of a Denverite's lonely millennial existence in an ever-gentrifying city.” Staying close to the same vein as their previous release (the four-song EP Fuchsia), TVG harnesses a raw energy brought to popularity by greats such as Nirvana (circa Bleach), The Strokes (circa Room on Fire), and indie greats Japandroids.

TVG.

TVG.

“Whatever” kicks off this release with a straightforward garage rock feel in a Dandy Warhols kind of way, highlighting the simple, yet, effective and easy to relate to lyrical content TVG presents to its listeners. “I’d Kill Myself But I Have to Go to Work Tomorrow” follows suit with an added level of dirty bass and a monologue-esque style of singing that reminded me of The Hives.

Katy Johnson.

Katy Johnson.

“The Model” holds coveted spot number three on the EP and presents the listener with what I interpreted as a sarcastic critique of the lifestyle of a fashion model, sung by bassist Katy Johnson. “My Favorite Drug” is a laid back punk vibe (if there is such a monster) alluding to a relationship being a favored drug. “Placeholder” comically comes in as an homage to its own name, but is noteworthy due to the song being uncharacteristic of the energy of the rest of the EP, and almost like an early Radiohead song in regard to its droning lethargy. “Going Blank Again” returns to a more traditional post-punk vibe, as well as being the longest track at over five minutes. “Thirteen” closes out the EP in emo-pop/punk style with a playful guitar lead while Will Hayden sings from the point of view of being a thirteen-year old.

Keep up with TVG on their social media and check out Television Generation live March 9th at Streets of London Pub. Event details here.

-Norman

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

Review: Denver Meatpacking Company Bring Retro 90s Sounds To The Modern Age With New Record 'Escape'

By: Nathan Sheppard

Denver Meatpacking Company, a Denver based three piece rock band, will be releasing their second album Escape this Friday, September 29th. The album is a throwback to the early 90s rock scene, with a unique blend of indie and a little grunge, creating an old school sound with hints of The Pixies and The Presidents of the United States of America. Denver Meatpacking Company has a raw energy to their music that you don’t see often today. Jack Endino, who helped produce some of the early albums from Nirvana and Soundgarden, was a perfect fit to collaborate with for Escape. Together with Endino, the band have created a 12-song album which combines fast paced rock songs with quiet verses and loud choruses with slower songs, creating a good dynamic contrast and an edginess to the sound of the record that isn’t overbearing.

Denver Meatpacking Company.

Denver Meatpacking Company.

For this album, the band, which consists of Jerome Bellian (drums/vocals), Alfred Mueller (bass/vocals), and David Simutis (guitar/lead vocals) took some basic gear and isolated themselves in the mountains of Colorado to get lost in the creative process.

“I cooked tacos for breakfast while we plotted out the day and ran through what we’d done the night before,” said Alfred, “There was no pressure, no rushing, just playing and getting the songs down. Sometimes you have to escape from it all to get it all together.”

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Being able to focus solely on producing new songs, Denver Meatpacking Company was able to come up with the lyrics and riffs which let them build each track on Escape. This stripped down approach resulted in a solid album that combines the different sounds of 90s rock- including guitar with heavy distortion, smooth bass lines, and energetic drum fills- to create a fun blast to the past that still reeks enough original to keep the listener engaged.

If you’re looking to jam out to the Denver Meatpacking Company’s new record live, the trio have a show coming up this Sunday, October 1st at Bruz Beers. Keep up with Denver Meatpacking Company here.

-Nathan

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

Review: Grunge Pop Duo Stereoshifter Release Fuzz-Driven, Drum-Pounding Rock Record 'Whatever it is to You'

By: Norman Hittle

Denver duo Stereoshifter describe their sound, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, as “grunge pop.” What is this seemingly contradicting genre? You’ll have to listen to find out:

Check out Stereoshifter's latest single, "Catch Fire":

Whatever it is to You, the band’s sophomore EP, which drops this week, features three guitar-fuzz-driven, drum-pounding rock songs that seem to have come straight from the 90s. Of course, it’s hard not to jump to conclusions and find the EP reminiscent of Nirvana and The Vines, but upon deeper listening, there are also traces and snippets of inspiration from acts ranging from Dinosaur Jr. to Weezer.

Stereoshifter.

Stereoshifter.

Following the release of their Dumb Luck EP (2016), Stereoshifter, which is Josh Cal (vocals/guitars) and Peter Higgins (drums), continued to write, record, and create new music. Starting 2017 with a brand-new single “All I Can Stand,” the two-piece is now closing out the summer with Whatever it is to You.

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The EP is produced by the band, and starts out with the heavy and frantically anthemic “It’s Not You, it’s Me” that gives the kickstart needed to keep listening. The single “Catch Fire” comes in at track two and starts out with a very Thin Lizzy-esque “Boys Are Back in Town” riff before going into a pseudo Green Day-sounding chorus. The final track is the more mellow “Spoon Fed,” which I feel really caters the most to the traditional grunge vibe with a touch of post-rock for good measure due to its droning and sludgy riffs.

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In their live performance, the two musicians adopt the approach to IAMDYNAMITE and similar rock duos of overlapping guitar and bass tracks, making it possible to sound like a four-piece act. Though minimalistic in setup, anyone who has seen any of these bigger acts can attest that the sound is anything but minimal.

Check out Stereoshifter at the Hi-Dive with OverUnder this Thursday, August 31st to hear their new EP; tickets and event info here. Keep up with Stereoshifter on their Facebook.

-Norman

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

Rodes Rollins EP 'Young Adult' Talks Of Young Love & Growing Up In Boulder, CO

By: Sierra Voss

Rodes Rollins (Talia Taxman) has been honing her songwriting skills since age eight in Boulder, CO, and it shows. Her first EP, 'Young Adult,' dropped earlier this year and is quite the masterpiece for this artist’s freshman release. 'Young Adult' is an intimate look into Rollins’ story of  young love and growing up. Rollins’ songs embody mystery, naivety, wisdom, passion and grit. I recently chatted with Rodes more about her Colorado roots and the story of how this EP came to be. Read on:  

When did you start singing?

I have been writing and recording since I was eight years old. I worked with a guitar teacher in Boulder and she was so supportive and let me use her home studio to start recording my songs. She often brought in studio musicians to play with me. So I have a lot of recordings from a really young age. I was writing pretty mature content, but my voice hadn’t quite caught up yet, so it’s pretty funny stuff to listen to. 

Rodes Rollins.

Rodes Rollins.

So how did songwriting come into play in your life? I feel like most people get into songwriting later in life, after choir, or taking voice lessons for a couple of years. I’m curious how the songwriting part of singing came at such an early age for you.

It's hard to say. For me, it was kind of the way I learned how to play. It was my exploration of music and of the guitar. Like I never really learned how to play other people's songs. It was just me jumping in and making sounds and trying to understand it that way. Even today, I would never call myself a guitar player- it's more always been a writing tool for me. Writing prose and other things has always been something important to me too. I think more than anything, I used music as another avenue for writing. My parents were also incredibly involved in the music scene in Boulder growing up and had us listening to all sorts of music at home.

What type of music did you grow up with? 

We listened to a lot of Cat Stevens and The Beatles. I was also super into my dad listening to Nirvana and punk grunge. I never really fully grasped that type of music in my younger age, but I remember being super drawn to those darker sounds.  

Did you ever play gigs around Boulder growing up? 

I did little things. I actually got to perform at a songwriter workshop. I was working with Wendy Woo, who was a local singer songwriter. She had me come perform at a songwriting workshop she was teaching to a group of adults. She would always include me in things like that growing up. It was really not up until I moved to New York in college at NYU and studied abroad in Buenos Aires that I started performing on a consistent basis. 

Did you go to NYU to study music?  

I actually studied at the school for individualized study where you craft your own curriculum. I studied- well the title is Iconography- basically it’s the study of what makes a person iconic, looking at the branding of people. So I studied that, which in so many ways relates to music.

So when you studied abroad in Buenos Aires you started performing? Tell me more about that. 

That was my sophomore year. NYU has an campus in Argentina. So it's basically you with other people from the US in Argentina. I felt frustrated with that setup- why would I come all the way down here just to be in classes with everybody from the States? So I started trying to figure out ways to go out and meet local people. I was meeting a lot of people at bars, but it was difficult as a foreign woman to navigate and make friends that way. So I started going to a lot of open mics instead and ended up meeting a really great artist community there. It felt like each gig led to another one. I got to do some radio shows just based on people I met at those gigs. It was a really kind of magical time. That's when I really started getting into performing my songs. 

Once you got back from that semester did you come back wanting to continue pursuing your music?

I think that semester abroad I really struggled with the idea of coming back to New York and being a student. I was so energized to keep doing music at that point. It clicked for me- 'This is what I want to do, full time- I want to dive in.' However, I ended up developing really bad tonsillitis right when I returned and wasn’t able to sing, let alone speak clearly. I ended up having to get surgery for that, which put a huge roadblock on music for me. When all was said and done, that took about a year to recover from. I stayed in school during that time but I kept writing. Once I healed, I started working with Sam Pattillo, who actually discovered my music on Soundcloud. I had recorded an EP at Coupe Studios, so that was floating around. He heard it and I ended up partnering with him on his indie label to do Young Adult. I recorded my EP in LA; Alex Goose (Kevin Gates, Weezer) produced it. That was my senior year of college: going back and forth between LA and New York in order to finish school and record.  

What has life looked like since your release?

It's been great to get my music out there. I ended up going to Mexico City for this release. I went to Casey Middle School in Boulder, which is an bi-lingual school, and from that point on I was very enamored with Latin culture. That led to me studying Spanish and studying abroad. For this EP, we worked on a video there so I ended up going there to release “Young and Thriving,” which is a single from the EP. Since then, I have been in New York playing a lot of shows.

What’s next for you? New music? Touring?

We are releasing a short film we did in collaboration with a group in Mexico. It was inspired by one of the songs on the EP called, “Wes Come Back.” It’s a very dark film, almost like horror. I am really excited to get that out! Hopefully I will be coming back to Colorado to tour. I am going back to LA to record a new album soon, so I am hoping either on the front or back end of that, I will be able to stop in Colorado.

Watch Rodes Rollins' video for "Wes Come Back": 

A lot Young Adult revolves around young love and growing up. Was that a young love you had in Boulder?

Yeah he was. He was my highschool boyfriend and my first love.

Are there any Colorado references throughout the album besides him?

Lyrically there aren’t, but sonically, [there are] for sure. I think a lot of the sounds are Western inspired, from the whistles to the tremolo guitar sounds. I really was envisioning a Colorado Western landscape when I was writing this first EP.  

Take a listen to Rodes Rollins and check out her music video for her song, “Wes Come Back” off her latest EP 'Young Adult' above! Keep up with Rodes here

-Sierra

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

Thrash Vibes, Garage Rock, & Green Things- Oh MY!

By: Trevor Ryan

Last weekend, I found myself once more at the University of Colorado’s Memorial Center attending another incredible show put on by Club 156. The vibe was familiar, only this time, an almost hardcore energy filled the room. It was very hype-y; the sound crew seems especially stoked for the coming show. I arrived early, and a few fans already lined the walls of the intimate venue; a small room hosting a quaint stage bursting with grungy potential.

Listen to Loretta Kill’s “Too Cool For You”:

First onstage was Loretta Kill. With a very garage rock sound, the trio utilized heavy distortion accompanied by growling vocals. Theirs is not always an easy sound to master in a small room, but Loretta Kill definitely killed it. They emit a bit of that nostalgia you had listening to Nirvana in your youth, combined with experimental gestures and a “too cool” attitude that is somehow instantly appealing.

Princess Declaw. 

Princess Declaw. 

Next up was Princess Dewclaw. An act that I will not soon forget, this five-piece held absolutely nothing back. The first thing to hit you was lead vocalist Amanda G.’s pipes. The self proclaimed “no wave trash pop” frontwoman gave literally everything she had with ear shattering wails, followed by abrupt near-whispers. And the whole time, she rolled her eyes excessively, apathetic in stature, and in an almost character-like way. Meanwhile, behind her, the band used intricate synth work and some sick rhythm to really make it all POP!

The Beeves.

The Beeves.

Following them, the show’s headliner appeared: The Beeves. This trio is an insanely tight act in their appearance and their sound. Their glances to one another while playing had me wondering what move they’d make next; that unspoken language that keeps everything flowing in a good set. But just as you’re distracted by their tight playing, that’s when it enters: The Green… Thing. A mascot of of sorts parades around the stage, holding a seemingly pointless purpose, until you realize how pumped you become watching him. You want to dance; you want to mosh and The Beeves will get you to do it with classic ska elements set to a hard rock theme and a punk/thrash vibe. Move.

Listen to The Beeves’ self-titled EP:

Once again, Club 156 put on a fantastic show. You'll go for the people; you'll stay for the friggin’ insanity! Keep up with their upcoming events here.

-Trevor

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

BolderBeat's 'November's My Favorite Indoor Sport' Playlist

By: Joliene Adams

Every month, we publish a new Spotify playlist of Colorado artists for your ears. Here’s our 'November's My Favorite Indoor Sport' playlist, because it’s bound to snow here soon and make you want to curl up inside with some good tunes, right?

BolderBeat's 'November's My Favorite Indoor Sport' Playlist: 

 

1. Candy Claws, Ceres and Calypso in the Deep Time (2013), “Into the Deep Time (One Sun)”

Best song for dreaming cozily in bed about ancient sea creatures emerging from the depths of the deep blue.

How old is the ocean? That’s where things get a little bit fuzzy. And Candy Claws’ own fuzzy dream pop fuels this question with echoes like reverb in deep time, a multimillion year operation of geologic formation. For such distortion and heavy chugging guitar riffs, the atmospheric effects across this track are as divergent from your typical “ocean sounds” as they are hypnotizing. Still, this song feels like you’re looking right into the ocean, taking in the crash of waves in slow motion.

PS: Candy Claws recently expanded into a new project, Sound of Ceres, who you can check out here.

2. shark dreams, Deeep (2016), “Frozen Love”

Best song for lying down on the bed you just made, hands behind head.

Crisp hits on closed hi-hat and drum rim snare your ears into the rhythmic tap of this tune. Warm electric guitar moves by, while layered male and female vocals float and intermingle. This one picks up speed across its first minute, only to hold back and slow down. These subtle shifts pull at your emotional tide, encouraging you to just feel the sensations as its sounds ebb and flow. Relax.

3. The Lonelyhearts, Years in the Great Interior (2013), “Princess of Rubble”

Best song for doing a sock dance to in the comfort of your own home.

At least that’s the first thing their breezy, playful, jaunt-worthy, ear-pleasing, non-lyrical vocals and sounds make me want to immediately do. The sound of longboards chuck-chucking over wooden slatted boardwalks would sound great with this jam on in your headphones. But this month is an indoor sport so I’ll settle for a sock dance on the hardwoods instead.

4. Josh Dillard, The Bright Light of Shipwreck (2013), “Ever Since You’ve Been Gone”

Best song to try and swoon your holiday crush with.

Dillard’s vocals come from deeper than his diaphragm. He’s not a heavy baritone or anything. Just plenty vocally soulful. I admire how he paces out syllables. Sometimes he lets vowels linger and sometimes he wraps them up in a neat quick-time that adds a certain freshness to his tunes. Anyone who sang this to me would definitely get a first date, provided they sang it with the exact same expressiveness that convinced me here we have a man with heart, personality, and poetry.

5. Anthony Ruptak, Between the Hangman and the Halo (2015), “The Bus Song”

Best song to let your mind wander away with.

Since you can’t go skipping flat rocks on the silver pool so easily this time of year, Anthony Ruptak brings the next best-feeling thing to your living room. This sweetly woven story of gratitude will waft right in over you and walk into your daydreaming heart. The harmonica on this track lends customary nostalgia. It’s a nourishing tune that brings it home, and makes it warm inside to boot.

6. Land Lines, The Natural World (2015), “Etiquette”

Best song to listen to when you wish you could be out hiking the trails.

The hand shaker really is a staple of percussive force. My hand wants to spasm just imagining keeping pace on this one. Ross Harada persists, but never intrudes or exceeds a wise clip of pace on this percussion, and that includes his drum playing. The complex instrumental variation of this one mixed with a certain sparseness in each instrument individually empowers the sonic valleys and peaks of “Etiquette.” I’m not sure whether it’s Anna Mascorella or Martina Grbac plucking cello here, but it’s the nicest touch this song could possibly have. Oh the views.

7. The Ghost of Joseph Buck, Scenic (2015), “Not About You”

Best song to splatter paint on your bedroom walls to in large, sweeping, unapologetic motions.

The Ghost of Joseph Buck would rather break your heart slowly. Polly Beck’s lead vocals come out sultry, lyrics a smidge salty, piano wisely. You have to listen for Stephanie Schooley on bass, but she’s there as much as the spinal cord that supports your body’s basic structure without you hardly thinking about it once. Marc Walker’s drums hold off on any and all cymbals and hi-hat until 2:04, a crux moment to the song’s bursting, multi-instrumental power crescendo and caterwauling vocals. The fact that together, the group winds this one back down to its original slower pacing at 3:15 is no less an impressive transition. Killing me not so softly, but in a welcome way no less.

8. Sur Ellz (feat. Kid Astronaut), Sur Ellz (feat. Kid Astronaut) (single; 2016), “Seasons”

Best song to bump the snow off your window pane with.  

Just because November’s an indoor sport doesn’t mean the soundtrack can’t be bumpable. Neo-soul and R&B have as much a job to do to here as mellow acoustic instrumentation or synthy shoegaze. Denver’s Khalil Arcady (Sur Ellz) and Jon Shockness (Kid Astronaut) conspire to bring you raw stories across fresh, smooth beats. Here are two men that don’t fear too much for their manhood to be lyrically vulnerable, to get sonically romantic, to sing about some real feelings. Electronically reproduced hand claps with what sounds like a snare-reminiscent drum machine hit mix with a simmering electronic warbling on slow-cook. Snow gone.

9. Mesita, With Love From Laniakea (2016), “Blank Slate”

Best song to curl up in your favorite blanket with.

A little Thom Yorke to the vocals, a little Nirvana’s “All Apologies” stylistically in the chorus, and the electro fuzz juxtaposed with what sounds like a xylophone played in a piano style, if you will, demonstrate my meaning. Solo act Mesita (James Cooley) doesn’t just do layers. He uses them to create his very worthy-of-a-listen ends: richly interlaced, juxtaposed interplays that create entirely new, richly textured soundscapes. He has a humble willingness in being limitless with what he’s willing to include. For Mesita, 1+1 never equals two. It always equals three, because he takes one thing plus another, and makes a whole new third one straight from it.

10. Moda Spira, Moda Spira (2016), “She Whispers”

Best song to shave your legs, lie in silk sheets, and lament with.

Gentle keys couple with tender and light acoustic guitar. As with the sound of whispering, there is a particular intimacy in Latifah Phillips (Moda Spira’s) singing. In "She Whispers", it’s not always the vocals, but sometimes the pauses taken between sung parts that lend the breathing room in which the sounds seep across your heart and emotions. Come to find out via Reel Gospel’s 2016 She Whispers album review, Moda Spira means “just breathe” in Latin. Her talent in piano is a mainstay in the stewing build of her protracted, draw-you-in musical magnetism.

11. Maxwell Mud, Maxwell Mud (2015), “I Just Wanna Be Good”

Best song to make a New Year’s resolution never to be good again.

Maxwell Mud, as would be appropriate for chillin’ inside, cooking soup, and contemplating, goes for the slow cook much like others on this playlist. However hard Brian Kitrell’s lyrics profess he just wanted to be good, it’s quite clear in his words, guitar riffs, Kenny Jones’ accomplice bass, and Kevin Johnson’s rock’n’roll blues drums that this is a foregone conclusion. At least in the present circumstances and context. His vocals are too steamy for anything but a pot on the brink of hot boil rupture-rapture.

12. Eye and the Arrow, Eye and the Arrow (single; 2015), “Tiger”

Best song to “look out at the cold night from your warm room at the bright moon on the white snow through the window frost and the forest shadows.”

Paul Dehaven has a marvelous storytelling song-voice, and he harkens on stories Portland’s The Decemberists might tell. His own finger flicks at the guitar, Jason Haas-Hecker’s slightly foreboding bass line, and Mark Anderson’s non-deviant foreword drumming collaborate with Dehaven’s story, vocals, and backup echoes to leave you listening to the very scene of walking through the forest when it’s too uncomfortably cold to actually do so.

13. Nearby Liars, Unlearning (2016), “Wither and Rust”

Best song to reflect upon your real feelings to in the bathtub.

Lyrically, this one doesn’t happen as an outright love song. It’s just that the rest sure sounds like a heart that’s known love, is reflecting upon it, and is expressing a definite fallout story of hard facts and cold truth love experiences. It’s lamentation, regrettable, and real. Riley Sbrana’s songwriting waxes and pounds with hard earned self-knowledge for better and for worse. The backup vocals on this one prove to be an emotive staple, and the light acoustic guitar sounds that nudge their way in at 3:20 are the most perfectly subtle, elegant touch.

Thanks for playing with us this November, Colorado. Make sure to follow us on Spotify and take a listen to this playlist and more Colorado music playlists at BolderBeat.

-Joliene

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

Television Generation's New EP Fuchsia + Their Move Into the Denver Music Scene

By: Claire Woodcock

Will Hayden (vocals/guitar), Katy Johnson (bass), and Anthony Elio (drums) split from Boulder for the Denver area after their respective exits from CU, where Television Generation came to be. That was in 2012, when the EDM scene was exclusively big in Boulder and there was little wiggle room in the music scene for a punk rock presence.

"I think Boulder has a problem with being a transient kind of place,” said Hayden. “Tons of people go [there] for college; these people come and most of them go. People just move away. And a lot of the bands that we saw pop up when we were in college are no longer active.”

Television Generation.

Television Generation.

TVG set their sights on the Denver scene and recorded their first EP If Only I Had A Brain with Mammoth Cave Recording Studios in 2013. After some feedback from producer Lance Bendiksen (The Fray), Hayden and Elio broke out the metronome and put more hours into mastering their ’60s pop, ’90s grunge, alt rock energy. Johnson joined TVG a few months after the band released their second EP Digital Static (2015), a release that includes a track called “Space Invaders” mixed by Jack Endino from Nirvana.

A year later, Television Generation has released their third EP Fuchsia with Todd Divel of Silo Sound Recording Studio in Denver. Hayden says they went into their first session thinking that they would only have time to lay down one or two tracks. But the result was an EP’s worth of tunes recorded over the course of just a few hours. It could have been the Simpsons references exchanged between TVG and Divel that kept things grooving. Or it could have just been, as Johnson said, “We were having a really good day.”

Check out Television Generation’s latest EP, Fuchsia:

Fuchsia operates on a sliding scale between garage rock, post-punk, super punk, (if that were legitimate genre) and alt rock. Television Generation told me they drew inspiration for this release from The Beatles, The Who and most notably, Sonic Youth. Johnson employs a Kim Gordon-esque style on Fuchsia by creating a lot of garage rock noise and manipulating the distortion and delay pedals to produce all kinds of uncomfortable, yet totally satisfying feedback in the middle of pop songs.

Will Hayden of TVG.

Will Hayden of TVG.

Back on the subject of the Denver scene, Hayden said that when Johnson joined the group, the trio started checking out other punk acts, which has become a huge support system for TVG.

“That’s what a music scene is and should be.” said Hayden.

Branching out from Boulder to Denver allowed TVG to not only meet talented bands, but to get a sense of the quality of the younger bands popping up from all over the place.

“The flux of people to Colorado probably helps because there's a lot of fresh blood out here and they're looking for places to play, and that's kind of what I was saying about Boulder [being transient],” said Hayden. “There are a lot of people coming in from out of state obviously for the weed and all that, and a lot of people see it as a bad thing, but I think it's really good for the music [scene]. It brings in a lot of fresh, excited people and I think that’s what we haven’t seen in years past: that excitement in people finding local bands. There’s enough talent and enough people interested, so let's blow it up as much as we can.”

TVG thinks that these trends in the Denver music scene will only continue to soar.

“We could make Denver the new Seattle.” Hayden added, with enough conviction in his voice that the possibility could someday be true.

TVG.

TVG.

This Sunday, November 6th, Television Generation will ‘Rock Against Trump’ at Seventh Circle Music Collective with an anti-Trump CD release show, featuring a whole laundry list of bands in the Denver punk scene. If you’re looking to rage the day before the election, this is where you should be. Proceeds will be donated to the Standing Rock protesters and Amnesty International.

Keep up with Television Generation 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.

Album Review: Race to Neptune's "Oh Contraire"

By: Jesse Sandoval

Imagine: The alarm clock goes off. You and your closest friends begin to stir. There is a faint light coming in through the curtains; a welcome reminder that today, you and your friends are about to set out on the summer road trip you’ve been planning for months. The sun will be up in less than an hour, and a quick glance at the sky confirms it’s likely to be an extra beautiful day. Everyone is ready. The last of your supplies are moved into the already packed car with a fervent haste. You get in the driver's seat as everyone is buckling up. Last minute checklist: Wallet? Phone? Keys? Check, check, and check. Clothes? Gear? Beer? Check, check, and check. Coffee? Double-check. And most importantly, an album to start the adventure off right?

Check:

Oh Contraire, is the 9-track debut LP from the Fort Collins-based rock band Race to Neptune. It is sonically pleasing, playful, and refreshing. It teems with lush guitar-wall effects, tasteful melodies, and head-bobbing beats. The Colorado four-piece, comprised of Brian Maier (vox/guitar), Vanessa Freese (drums), Ken Cavanaugh (bass, vox, guitar), and Zach Berger (guitar), have managed to squeeze as much luscious guitar tone as possible into some of these tracks. Nothing in the mix sounds too loud or too quiet. In fact, the whole album is evidence of some pretty nice production, which justifies a shout-out to the team at The Spot Studios, where it was recorded. The record is enjoyable to listen to, and has some genuine replayability. I caught myself grooving to RTN’s music each time I listened to it.

Race to Neptune.

Race to Neptune.

Most of the vocal melodies on the LP are fetching and evocative. The topics of the songs are fairly unrelated, but revolve around feelings of longing, fear, anger, and disgust; classic staples for this style of rock, which I would call shoegaze, dream-pop, indie/alt-rock. I tend to shy from labels; they usually say more about my experiences than what the band might actually sound like to you, but I gotta say something. In any case, I’m pretty sure that anyone with a solid appreciation of alternative rock music will enjoy Oh Contraire.

The opening track, “Wanderlilly”, is definitely my favorite track on the album. The succinct lyrics tell of a brief connection that is both sad and beautiful, and the song just rocks. Not far behind is the last track, “Waterspout”, which I love for its varied, yet balanced musicianship.

Listen to “Wanderlilly” for yourself:

Despite my endorsement, I do have one critique. The eighth track, “The Bayou Brew”, is a southern rock track that is too far a stylistic departure from the alt-rock sound of the rest of the record. Still, overall Oh Contraire is a strong debut.

In its entirety, Oh Contraire is a good rock album worth your listen. So whether it be for your next road trip, or whatever adventure you embark upon this summer, choose Race to Neptune’s Oh Contraire to come along for the ride. Keep up with the band on their Facebook and Reverbnation pages. Like you, I hope to catch them live soon.

Recommended If You Like: The CureSmashing Pumpkins, My Bloody Valentine, Nirvana

-Jesse

Rare, Rough, & Revolutionary: Nederland's Nom de Guerres

By: Will Baumgartner

The band's French name is only half the story of Nederland-based Nom de Guerres' sound.

Nom De Guerres is one of the most interesting bands I’ve ever encountered. There is so much going on within their often deceptively simple-sounding music that any discerning and attentive listener quickly realizes they’ve got to dig deeper than the surface to get all of the gifts this group has to offer. The impossible-to-pigeonhole trio is the brainchild of Maus Nomdeguerre, an intelligent and eminently likeable guy well-known to local music lovers and the community in and around the quirky mountain town of Nederland. In an effort to get more insight into the band’s songs, and the man behind them, I recently grabbed Maus for a little chat, which turned out to be the most fascinating and instructive of any we’ve ever had:

I know the term nom de guerre means “an assumed name used by a soldier to mask his true identity”, but I’ve also seen definitions that apply it to fighting, writing, painting, or “a fictitious name used when a person performs a particular social role”. I’ve noticed the Guy Fawkes mask appears in a lot of the band’s artwork too. What’s the significance of all of this?

Nom de guerre is used in modern French to designate any form of an alias. In medieval times, it was a name assigned specifically for warfare in Arthurian romances. There’s a bit of an inside joke [for us] in the grammatical incorrectness in French with the band name. [Our artwork with] Guy Fawkes can be interpreted in a variety of ways, but he himself plotted to blow up the British parliament and was tortured as a result.

How, when, and where did Nom de Guerres become a group?

Nom de Guerres was formed from jamming at the Pioneer Inn open mic night in Nederland, which I hosted for three years. Eventually, I merged it with some players I was using from my fusion project and Nom de Guerres was born.

You’ve got a couple of great local players in this trio, including drummer Zach West and bassist Christopher Merz. What qualities make these guys perfect for your group?

Zach is probably the most consistent and versatile drummer I have worked with in Colorado, and possesses the ability to seamlessly transition between styles, something I need from a drummer. Chris really brings in the tone of the band; he’s definitely got that SoCal pre-grunge mentality when it comes to the bass, and can play a solid line or jam with a great rock-feel. He’s also a great singer, which has worked out well for expanding [our] harmony vocals.

You describe the band’s sound as “dirty folkabilly western swing”. Care to expound on that?

I am a jazz-trained musician, primarily on saxophone, in the Chicago tradition: essentially everything I do has the swing 8ths feel, but we reinterpret musicians from Willie Nelson to Leonard Cohen to GG Allin to Nirvana. I also spent a lot of time playing in the Midwest punk scene. We couldn’t come up with a genre that actually fits what we do, so we made up our own.

When you bring a song to the band, does it ever change as a result of the group’s interactions and ideas?

I wrote all of our originals, but I trust the musicians I work with to fill out their parts with a little direction; one or two bass lines Chris and I have sat down and written together. I also write all the chordal reinterpretations we do as covers, but things evolve in rehearsal and live performances. There’s a point when it sounds right to all of us and it just works. 

Maus Nomdeguerre.

Maus Nomdeguerre.

While you primarily sing and play guitar in the group, some of your great sax playing can be heard on NGD’s recordings. Do you ever play sax with the group in live performances?

Rarely. I usually rely on a fourth musician [for that]. I use a few horn players depending on who’s available: Paul Stadler, Prasanna Bishop, occasionally Jeremy Mohney- they’re all great saxophone players with different approaches and great ears. On the EP and on our work-in-progress pieces, I play all of the saxophone parts.

Have you ever considered expanding your current lineup by adding other full-time players?

Besides the sax players, I have used female vocalists, harmonica, trumpet, and lead guitar players. In an ideal world, Nom de Guerres would be a seven or eight-piece band.

What do you hope listeners will get from your music?

I hope people get a political and social message from it, as well as an artistic lyrical experience. I try to bring energy and passion to every show.

This Saturday, June 4th, you’re playing at the Pioneer Inn in Nederland. What can audiences expect at a Nom De Guerres show?

We will be debuting new songs all summer, as well as playing my social democratic song “Bernie’s Theme”. I will also be using a guitar with a body made entirely from cannabis.

Yikes! It might be worth it to some local stoners to come out just to hear you play that thing. So what’s on the horizon for the band? Any special plans for the coming year?

We have two recording projects in progress, one which will be primarily political songs, with a few covers, including a particularly heavy interpretation of “Masters of War”. The other record is called Hanging Songs, and is new originals written in the last year. We will be playing around Colorado most of the summer.

Check out Nom de Guerres’ show this Saturday in Ned, and keep up with their tour schedule and new releases here.

-Will

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

The Weekend Six: Six Shows to See 12/11, 12/12, & 12/13

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Snow or not, we’re hittin’ shows this weekend! Here’s where you should trek to franz:

Today (Friday, 12/11)

The Haunted Windchimes at Chautauqua Community House 730PM-Close

The Haunted Windchimes. 

The Haunted Windchimes. 

We always love a cozy show at Chautauqua Community House and tonight The Haunted Windchimes are playing. They’re a folk/roots four-piece from Pueblo, CO signed to Blank Tape Records who have been touring the state quite a bit this year. They’ve played A Pairie Home Companion and OpenAir CPR

Haunting is an accurate inclusion. Listen to their track "Make It Rain" here:

Samsonic at The No Name Bar 10PM-Close

The No Name.

The No Name.

Samsonic is one part Miles Wide and one part we’re not sure what else! But we always love a good No Name performance. There’s nothing like sipping whiskey in a warm, wooden room with all of your best friends and great tunes. Go check ‘em out.

Tomorrow (Saturday, 12/12)

BolderBeat Presents: The 9th Annual Homevibe for the Holidays Concert at The Walnut Room 630PM-Close

John Craigie. Taylor Carson. Augustus. Danielle Ate The Sandwich. We’ve brought you holiday tidbits with these performers every day this week. And tomorrow is finally the night! We are ecstatic to be hosting a show with Homevibe Presents and can’t wait to see all of you in your best ski-themed clothes! Come eat pizza with us, escape the cold, and listen to some amazing tunes. Tickets still available here. See you soon.

Get stoked with a John Craigie vid from "The Day Off Sessions":

Whiskey Autumn at Jamestown Mercantile Co. 8PM-Close

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Jamestown’s even prettier in the snow. So join the WA boys for dinner and a show at The Merc this evening. They just dropped a new single this week (see below) and rumor is they’ll be playing it tonight for your listening pleasure, harmonies and all. We’ll be bringing you more info on them next week when their new music video drops. So stay tuned! And in the meantime, go catch these boys tonight.

Listen to their latest single 07.04.07 here:

XMas Sweater Soiree with Ben Hanna & the Knighthawks and Hunter Stone and the Getaway at Studio 700 930PM-Close

You're our idol too Ben Hanna.

You're our idol too Ben Hanna.

We recently checked out Studio 700 for a feature we’ll be bringing you in January, and we gotta say, it’s a pretty dang sweet spot. Formerly an insulated recording room, the guys at Studio 700 have worked hard to turn the place into an awesome performance space with cool lighting and great sound. Tonight, for only $5, you can check it out and wear your best Christmas sweater while Ben Hanna and Hunter Stone croon your ears off with their bands. Go go go!

Watch Ben Hanna’s latest music video here.

The Next Day (Sunday, 12/13)

Sister Speak with Riley Ann and Emily Shreve at The Walnut Room 8PM-Close

Sister Speak. Photo Credit: Jill Dedman

Sister Speak. Photo Credit: Jill Dedman

San Diego’s Sister Speak is led by musician and vocalist Sherri-Anne and backed by various instrumentalists. This is their last show before they head to British Columbia for the rest of the month. So go check them out! Boulder’s own one-woman-band Riley Ann will be opening for SS and Denver’s Emily Shreve is also making a set appearance. Sounds like it’s gonna be a powerful show! Roll to it.

Watch Sister Speak cover Nirvana here:

That’s all we’ve got for you! See you out!

-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.

Ben Hanna Wants to Surf with You at The Fall Showcase This Friday.

By: Zach Dahmen

Behind the scenes of Ben Hanna.

Boulder-based musician Ben Hanna.

Boulder-based musician Ben Hanna.

It’s a cold and wet fall evening as I wait for BolderBeat’s Fall Showcase opener at a coffee shop on Pearl Street’s west end. I take a few more sips of coffee and in walks a mop of black curls with a five o’clock shadow. Ben Hanna sits down across from me and instantly, his deep voice becomes the prominent sound over a bustling coffeehouse. With little prompting Ben starts telling me his story, with little to no filter; much like his music. He has these basset hound eyes which, as he starts to tell me how he fell in love with music, draw me into his twenty minute answer.

Hanna grew up outside of Detroit, Michigan. As he describes it, the suburbs are more akin to Orange County, California than the inner city. Instead of the hard knocks attributed to growing up in Detroit, Hanna was afforded an adolescence steeped in whatever music he could get his hands on. The earliest parts of his musical journey had him taking huge pit stops with The Violent Femmes, Ryan Adams, Radiohead, and Nirvana, the latter being a big enough influence that he’s actually wearing one of their shirts under his bulky cardigan tonight. Starting with simple bar chords and punk rock at the age of 15, Hanna progressed into taking lessons and giving serious thought to being a musician: “I wanted to be a player. I had a vision of me sitting in as a session musician down the road.”

Tea Time.

Tea Time.

After high school, Hanna moved to Colorado for college. He tells me this part of his life was framed by the music of Townes Van Zandt, whom he lends credit to as a catalyst for finding his voice as a songwriter. An even more noticeable influence in his music is Lou Reed (watch Ben Hanna’s “High Society Scene” as a perfect example). And Ben does credit Lou for helping him find direction. He tells me, “Lou Reed and Bob Dylan, they didn’t have these panty-dropping singing voices, but they were getting the point across in a really effective and powerful way. And so I realized that is kind of the voice I have.”

More recently, Ben’s musical efforts have been shaped with difficult times and personal hardship. The end of a relationship left him unable to write a song for months. That struggle lead him to a different way of approaching music: Being present in each moment.

“It’s being cultivated even when I’m asleep or just observing things, and there is this thought that I am absorbing it like a musical sponge.”

The Street Light Type.

The Street Light Type.

Ben keeps a notebook of lyrics on his phone that he calls “my emotional well.” He shows it to me- there are lyrics, sayings, and musings- a collection that takes more than a few finger strokes to move through. As I glance through it, Hanna tells me he’s got somewhat of a “different sound” overall, especially within Boulder. Unfiltered but focused is what comes to mind as Ben describes his musical life; much like our interview.

That “different” quality was exactly what drew BolderBeat to ask Hanna to open The Fall Showcase. With Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks, Hanna’s sound is a fleshed out, full rock and roll experience, fitting nicely into the night’s lineup of Blvd. and Whiskey Autumn.

“I look at it as a wonderful opportunity to just kinda go surfing; play with the energy of the space and share a stage with different bands because we are all in subtle ways influencing each other. It’s going to be a really nice blend of sounds. People are in for a treat.” Hanna said of the upcoming show.

Sandboxin'.

Sandboxin'.

Beyond his Fall Showcase performance this Friday, Ben will be playing more live shows with the Knighthawks around the Front Range and beyond. Lately though his focus has been continued work on his new record. He’s been in the studio with Robbie Stiefel and Todd Adleman at The Mountain House Recording Studio in Nederland. Ben, admittedly ambitiously, tells me the new record is “a mix between Ryan Adams’ Heartbreaker and The Violent Femmes self-titled.”

Come see the ambitious, unfiltered Ben Hanna & The Knighthawks THIS FRIDAY at The Fall Showcase. And let’s surf.

-Zach

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

Interviewer Zach Dahmen.

Interviewer Zach Dahmen.

The Foo Fighters Are As Bored With Their Live Show As We All Are With Their Latest Album

By: Hannah Oreskovich

You read that right.

90s Foo, around their debut.  Image per   A.V. Club  .

90s Foo, around their debut. Image per A.V. Club.

Remember when the Foo Fighters used to be cool? Like when they actually rocked the f*ck out in the 90s? Or when they surprised protesting Westboro Baptist members with a song in support of the “love is love” movement a few years ago? Yeah me too. Growing up, the Foo were one of my favorite alternative rock bands. I tried to see them in 2008 at Red Rocks, but the show was rescheduled around the time I jetted off to college out of state. So you could say they’ve been on my wish list for a minute. But after Sunday’s show at Fiddler’s Green, I will never, ever see the Foo Fighters live again.

At one point in the history of time, Dave Grohl did have a rock’n’roll spirit, a "let's just shred" attitude. He was a member of Nirvana for f*cks sake, a band who literally became famous for their indifference and hatred of everything mainstream. But that spirit has long since died my friends.

2015 Foo, preparing for a show in the suburbs.  Image via   SMH  .

2015 Foo, preparing for a show in the suburbs. Image via SMH.

“We’ve been playing shows for 20 f*cking years!” Grohl screamed to applause. Apparently what this translates to is: “At this point, we’re so bored with our own material that we’re going to play a ton of cover songs and (bonus!) I’m going to give dozens of speeches throughout the show about ‘rocking out all night’ (aka until 11PM)”.

The Foo Fighters performance was basically seven hits that you would have expected them to play and four or five covers, including Van Halen's “Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love” and Stevie Wonder’s “Superstitious.” And yes those are great artists, and yes those are great songs. But I didn’t pay $75 to watch the Foo Fighters play forty minutes of stretched covers and a spray of lame cover riffs in Grohl’s twenty minute introduction of each band member (because true guitar prowess means you can play the first bit of Foreigner's “Double Vision”, right?). Sure I came for some of the Foo’s hits, but a deepcut or two would have been nice.


The Foo Fighters are as bored with their own material as we all are with their latest album. (Did anyone honestly dig Sonic Highways?)


Grohl made us watch a dumb video on how he created this throne.  Image per   FastCoCreate  .

Grohl made us watch a dumb video on how he created this throne. Image per FastCoCreate.

The Foo also spent a lot of time just screwing around. Grohl sat atop his throne (due to his recent leg injury), and this seat only became more fitting as the night went on. Grohl was perched like a rock’n’roll king and the entire show was a jestering of bullsh*t to keep him entertained. This was evident when Grohl brought a crying, drunk man-fan on stage and sang him "My Hero". Sure it was funny, but it was yet another twenty minute filler of lame antics that actually summarized the entire experience: If you were over 40 and drunk, I bet you had a great time at the Foo Fighters show.

After playing so many covers, at one point Grohl vomited at us, “You know what- I feel like we’re taking advantage of you playing these songs. We’re gluttons; gluttons of rock.” At least you know it Dave Grohl. But I want my money back.

-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

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