Synesthesia Is Throwing a Fiercely Feline Inspired Art Party at Spectra Art Space This Saturday

This Saturday, March 16th is Spectra Art Space's closing party for their cat-themed show called "And Meow This: The Tail End.” Synesthesia, the team behind our favorite Pink Party, is curating the evening. The night will feature work from a multitude of mediums by 30+ artists and musical appearances by Funk Hunk, Retrofette (DJ Set), and DLZMKSBTS.

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Spend Your NYE with The Pink Party + AFTERHOURS SPACE ODYSSEY to Start 2019 with a Bang

Life is better in pink.

Life is better in pink.

Still making your New Year’s Eve plans? We hope your answer is Yeah Baby! Denver’s full-sensory experience bar is hosting the best way to enter the new year with The Pink Party. Starting at 8PM, The Pink Party will be an intimate bash thrown by Synesthesia Denver Psych Fest, Kyle Hartman (The UMS), and Reed Fox (DéCollage, Moon Magnet). The night is 21+ and will feature sounds by Motion Trap (DJ Set), LePew (ft. members of Retrofette), S.I.X.X.X.D, and Reed Fox himself! Visual transportations will be provided by Andy Ai, Yonbre, and Kat Phenna. The night will of course feature a special midnight toast, and a free drink from Yeah Baby with your ticket purchase. Plus, if you stay true and wear your best pink duds (glitter or mylar preferred), you’ll receive select $5 cocktails all night long. Tier 1 tickets have already sold-out for the night, but Tier 2 tickets are still on sale for $35 here.

Get reborn.

Get reborn.

Though The Pink Party stops at 2AM, you don’t have to. Following your trip through Yeah Baby’s psychedelic pink wonderland, Lyft yourself over to Spectra Art Space for the NYE 2019: AN AFTERHOURS SPACE ODYSSEY after party. This rocket ship blasts off at midnight and returns to orbit at sunrise, so you can dance into the new year up until 6AM. Along with lasers, art installations, and “sounds you've never imagined,” this adventure will feature complimentary libations and an open maté bar. The AFTERHOURS SPACE ODYSSEY, produced by Moon Magnet, Belly Up, Hey Hay, and Spectra Art Space, will feature sets by Reed Fox, f-ethe, and Chuck Shadow. The event is 21+ and RSVP is required 24 hours in advance to attend. There are three tiers of tickets available for takeoff at this link.

Jet into a whole new world (and year) with The Pink Party + An Afterhours Space Odyssey. 2019 never looked so good baby…

Review: Retrofette's New Single "Lover In Japan" Is a Tasty Summer Splash of Synthwave

By: Norman Hittle

Denver-based Retrofette are an electropop act with 80s era funk and a splash of synthwave. Their latest single, “Lover in Japan,” is due out just in time for summer. Check it out:

If you left it up to me to describe Retrofett’s sound, I would liken it to what might have happened if Broken Bells, Julian Casablancas of the Strokes, Prince, and David Bowie had the chance to record a song together. Is it that good?! Yes, yes it is.

Frontman Sean Culliton pretty much nailed the overall feel with his comments on the song when he told us, “Lyrically, (it’s) a melancholy note written to an estranged lover. But sonically, it's a sunny day at the beach with neon sunglasses and volleyball montages.”

Retrofette. 

Retrofette. 

The band is the byproduct of keyboardists Sean Culliton and Xavier Provencher's love for vintage synthesizers and sweaty dance floors. Joined by synth bassist Ben Weirich and drummer Dylan Johnson on stage, the quartet’s brand of 80s-tinged synthpop was born in March of 2016. Aside from this single, Retrofette released its debut three-song EP I Don’t Mind in 2016. They have also played BolderBeat’s Official Showcase at 2017’s Underground Music Showcase, been listed as one of 303 Magazine's top Denver acts to see, and selected as the “Best Pop” act of 2017 by Westword Magazine.

The guys will be celebrating the release of “Lover in Japan” this Saturday, June 2nd at Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox. The night will also feature sets from Motion Trap and DJ Clay Cornelius. Tickets and show 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.

Lost Lake Lounge To Showcase Synth Sounds Tomorrow Night (11/25)

Denver’s Retrofette is set to headline Lost Lake tomorrow, November 25th for a night of synthpop with Whiskey Autumn and Nasty Nachos. Makebeliever will also throw down a DJ set to kick off the evening.

Retrofette at the BolderBeat UMS Day Party. Photo Credit:   Hannah Oreskovich

Retrofette at the BolderBeat UMS Day Party. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Earlier this year we premiered Retrofette’s music video for “Skeletons;” the four-piece also played the BolderBeat Underground Music Showcase Official Day Party, along with Whiskey Autumn. Needless to say, we’re stoked for this show!

Retrofette will be releasing a remix of their debut EP I Don’t Mind, with tunes remixed by local artists including futurebabes, Optycnerd, Snubluck, and Nasty Nachos.

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit:  Hannah Oreskovich

Whiskey Autumn. Photo Credit: Hannah Oreskovich

Said Sean Culliton about the night, “The whole concept behind this show is to highlight a portion of the synth community in Denver. There's a bigger community here for live electronic bands than most realize. We want to showcase that and hope to make this into a recurring event.”

Nasty Nachos.

Nasty Nachos.

Tickets are $10 online at this link and $15 day of show. This is the perfect show to cap your Turkey Day weekend celebrations- see you there!

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


The 2017 Underground Music Showcase Brought Together Artists & Fans For Four Days Of Awesome

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Denver’s annual four day music festival The Underground Music Showcase rocked South Broadway last weekend. We crawled the strip, ate nothing but pizza, and almost refused to sleep in the name of good music. Here are some of our favorite things about this year’s festival:

The Bands

Of course we went to as many shows as possible and of course most of them really rocked our socks off. But here we’re going to be shameless and first tell you about the killer acts who played our packed official day party.

Xavier Provencher & Sean Culliton of Retrofette.

Xavier Provencher & Sean Culliton of Retrofette.

BolderBeat & KGNU combined forces this year to bring you Brunch with a Beat at The UMS, which was five hours of sugar and synth by some of Colorado’s most promising electro acts.

Greg Laut of Whiskey Autumn.

Greg Laut of Whiskey Autumn.

Mirror Fears kicked things off with her industrial goth pop, Church Fire kept things movin’ with their Crystal Castles-esque electronic primal therapy, and DéCollage wrapped the front of The Irish Rover in Mylar and swept the stage with their avant-garde pop. Retrofette’s synth stylings followed, and created a massive dance party full of hip-shaking & flash tattoos. Whiskey Autumn’s indie synth pop closed the show; their unreleased track "Birds That Flew" had many whistling along to its chorus. And in between sets, DJ Erin Stereo crushed sweet beats. We gave away tickets to upcoming Future Islands and Thundercat shows, and we passed out donut lollipops, which many showgoers expressed they hoped were laced with weed (they were not kidz).

As for the rest of our UMS:

Anthony Ruptak.

Anthony Ruptak.

Our first official set at UMS 2017 was at Hi-Dive on Thursday with Anthony Ruptak, who started us off with amazing tunes from his new record Don’t Let It Kill You, and even streamed a Facebook live anti-Trump vid from the stage. Punk rock.

Ishka Phoenix of Ghost Tapes.

Ishka Phoenix of Ghost Tapes.

Ghost Tapes were a funky, neo-soul standout at Skylark; frontwoman Ishka Phoenix had the crowd melting as she delivered tasty R&B sounds from her ice cream microphone.

Ben Pisano of Corsicana.

Ben Pisano of Corsicana.

Corsicana gave us tasty indie tunes while we nommed hard on an Illegal Pete’s burrito, which was the only non-pizza item we allowed ourselves for sustenance. The four-piece are playing a couple of big Colorado shows with Hippo Campus this month, so make sure to roll to those.

Chris Scott & Chris Kimmel of OptycNerd.

Chris Scott & Chris Kimmel of OptycNerd.

OptycNerd describe themselves as “eclectro indie pop hop sexy time,” and well, we wish we’d written that ourselves. Their sexy time at Hi-Dive was enjoyed.

Zola Jesus.

Zola Jesus.

Zola Jesus brought her dark, operatic vocals to the main stage; Red Fang spouted the classic rock stoner jams they’re known for to a headbanging crowd.

What is cooler than wearing glow-in-the-dark face paint? Glow-in-the-dark guitar strings- DUH. Motion Trap had ‘em at their Rover set on Saturday, and they played their electro sonic disco tunes to a packed house that boogied with them from start to finish.

Mic Carroll of All Chiefs.

Mic Carroll of All Chiefs.

All Chiefs kept us out of the rain at Hi-Dive with their indie rock vibes, Evan Holm & The Restless Ones kicked up some folky soul at Gary Lee’s Motorcycle Club, and GALLERIES played a heartfelt tribute show celebrating the life of late Denver music prodigy Kyle McQueen.

The Outfit.

The Outfit.

Rock’n’roll’s The Outfit played their final set ever at 3 Kings Tavern on Friday to a mosh-ready, beer-heavy crowd who were clearly sad to see them go.

Rebecca Williams of The Savage Blush.

Rebecca Williams of The Savage Blush.

The Savage Blush had a killer psych rock-dripping set at the main stage, Slowcaves brought us chill wave surf rock sounds, and Dragondeer managed to blues rock us almost straight through a downpour, though they had to cut their set a bit short when the rain just about flash-flooded the festival parking lot in true Colorado fashion.

Esmé Patterson.

Esmé Patterson.

Brent Cowles revived a soaking crowd with “Cold Times” when the sun came back out, Esmé Patterson slayed her evening dream rock set with unreleased music and a touching tribute with Kitty Crimes to the late Tyler Despres, and Benjamin Booker crowd surfed his way right into Colorado’s heart, closing out the main stage of the festival Sunday evening.

The Booze

Dewar's Whiskey Emporium.

Dewar's Whiskey Emporium.

Breckenridge Brewing was a main sponsor for The UMS this year and we sipped many an Avalanche by the main stage throughout the fest. Dewar’s had what felt like a tiny house made for drinking with free smells and scotch eggs. It was delicious and why you would have wasted your tongue on any other mixed drink in the hot sun and the pouring rain is beyond us.

The Bunny

Yeah. This one.

Yeah. This one.

Mixed Up Gifts’ pop up shop on South Broadway had some sweet merch for sale from Sacred Bones Records and a creepy night light if you’re in the market to wake up afraid of the dark only to find Jason lurking in your bathroom. But best of all was their bunny, who tried to coerce festival-goers into the shop while eerily reading children’s books through the window.

The Budz

No, not that kind you typical Denverite. Overall, we had a rad time at The UMS this year, and we highly encourage you to check out all the bands we mentioned, all the acts we live-interviewed with Zach Dahmen, and any of the performers on the local lineup in general. Because if there’s one thing we came away with after four days of music-hopping insanity, it was with community- from the performers themselves, to the UMS staff and volunteers, to the eager ticket holders bouncing from show to show hoping to find their next favorite band- Denver came out to support its own. Whether we were playing beach volleyball in the artist tent during a downpour or running from the main stage with our best budz to get back to Broadway for a set (those smarter ones took the Meow Wolf bus), this weekend really showcased you- the local music supporter. And for that, we and apparently Governor Hickenlooper, thank you.

Check out our full photo gallery from The UMS 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.
 

BolderBeat & KGNU Hosting Official Day Party at 2017 Underground Music Showcase

This year, BolderBeat is proud to be partnering with KGNU Radio to host an official 2017 Underground Music Showcase Day Party during the Denver festival on Sunday, July 30th from 12PM-5PM at The Irish Rover Pub. 

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Join BolderBeat & KGNU for sugar and synth! We've got a photo booth, giveaways, & lots of surprises in store for this Sunday event. Here is our official day party lineup: 

12PM Mirror Fears

1PM Church Fire

2PM deCollage

3PM Retrofette

4PM Whiskey Autumn

*beats between sets by DJ Erin Stereo

So make sure to get your festival tickets here & stop by our party! Join our Facebook event for more info to follow in the coming weeks! Sweet sounds provided; sprinkles optional. 

Premiere: Retrofette's New Music Video For "Skeletons" Will Make You Shake Your Bones

By: Hannah Oreskovich 

Denver’s synth-pop new wave four-piece Retrofette formed just a year ago, but in that time, they’ve managed to build quite a following after the release of their debut EP I Don’t Mind. In 2016, the band, comprised of Sean Culliton, Xavier Provencher, Ben Weirich, Dylan Johnson, played two sold-out shows at Denver’s Hi-Dive, opened for acts like Magic Sword and Mark Mallman, and jumped back into the studio to record more music. Today, they dropped their first music video for the tune “Skeletons.” Watch the premiere below:

The track “Skeletons” is actually on the band’s debut EP. It was mixed and mastered at The Blasting Room in Fort Collins. Chris Beeble helped the band record vocals and mix the tune, while the rest of the song was recorded and produced by Sean Culliton and Xavier Provencher. Sean also takes writing credit on the track. And Hidden Woods Media braved the cold to film the video.

Xavier & Sean. 

Xavier & Sean. 

Said the band about the "Skeletons" video, “For the shoot of this music video, we watch our heroic dancing skeleton survive below-freezing weather and a few awkward encounters with the police of North Denver. His struggles were the real life illustration of what the song ‘Skeletons,’ and in a greater scope the whole concept of Retrofette, is all about. We make music because we want to see people dance in spite of their everyday problems. Maybe you're a skeleton that doesn't feel love. Maybe you're a skeleton that doesn't feel wanted. Maybe you're a skeleton who doesn't feel its face because you're wearing a latex suit in the middle of a blizzard. Whatever the problem, Retrofette plays music for people who want to escape for a minute and get sweaty on the dance floor.”

And just why does Retrofette think getting your own bones up to dance is so important?

Said Xavier, “I think dancing is the most basic and maybe primal form of human celebration. I love being able as a musician to give that to an audience. I love watching people be able to drop whatever their day has done to them and celebrate together. It’s also maybe a bit self-fulfilling. Lyrically, I feel I can get a little dark and down on the world. Setting those ideas to dance beats and watching people get down while you expound your sorrows onstage is the weirdest and most satisfying sort of therapy. I like the idea of people celebrating both happiness and sorrow.”

Retrofette’s “Skeleton” video release show is tonight, June 9th at Denver’s Fort Greene Bar with DJ Erin Stereo, and promises to be an intimate viewing experience.

Added Xavier, “We're so excited about this video release because it’s a brand new platform for us to share what we do with the world. We genuinely think that synth pop is a genre that the Coloradan people are missing out on, and can't wait to show everyone why they should be listening to it!”

So make sure to get yourself over to Denver’s Fort Greene Bar tonight and dance! Retrofette play Boulder’s Lazy Dog June 15th, followed by Denver’s Westword Music Showcase and The Underground Music Showcase. They’re also heading back into the studio to record some new music soon, and we’re stoked to see what those sessions bring.

Keep up with Retrofette 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.

A Night of Cosmically Cool Sounds with Denver's SIR

By: Jura Daubenspeck

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

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

SIR.

SIR.

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

Gallery photos per Joel Rekiel.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Watch SIR’s music video for “Go”:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

-Jura

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