Dynohunter Evoke The Depth And Expansiveness The EDM Scene Is Craving

By: Mirna Tufekcic

Boulder, Colorado, a city closely associated with bluegrass and jam bands, is also home to thriving EDM musicians. Born out of the Lotus and STS9 jam scene, Boulder’s own Dynohunter is a hybrid of electronic dance music production and live band improvisation. Pulling electronic influences from house, techno, and electronica, while continuing to be influenced by their instrumental funk, jazz, and jam roots; blending electronic influences with live saxophone, drums and bass, Dynohunter evoke the depth and expansiveness the EDM scene is craving.

Dynohunter.

Dynohunter.

The trio has been around since 2010 and they’ve come a long way in their time as a band. Clark Smith has been keeping Dynohunter fresh with sax, keys, and percussion while mixing and producing the music, Fred Reisen adds the essential drooling low bass grooves, and drops a synth note when appropriate, Nic Thornsberry seamlessly kicks the drums and SPD-SX.  Blend these with tasteful original electronic soundscapes peppered with other organic instruments (like a conch shell, for example) and you got yourself an EDM journey deep into the universe (or jungle, or ocean, or insert your own temperature and atmosphere preference here). You are bound to at least bob your head, if you’re not fully compelled to dance.   

Watch Dynohunter’s recent live session at Knew Conscious:

Clark’s sparking creativity stems from his take on the music genre, “I just feel like EDM, Techno, and House music have so much untapped potential and unexplored pockets that intrigue and excite me. With other music genres, it feels like most avenues have already been explored.”

Dynohunter.

Dynohunter.

Early on in their career, the band played alongside the likes of Sunsquabi, Infected Mushroom, Shpongle, The New Deal, Papadosio and more. They’ve toured the country and have performed at music festivals coast to coast including Summercamp, Joshua Tree Music Festival, Sonic Bloom, and Arise. But along with their successes, the band has also dealt with tough loss. In April 2016, the band’s drummer and dear friend Justin Ehmer passed away after a long battle with cancer. Justin was a key member of the band who poured his heart and soul into the project. Since then, Dynohunter has pushed on, healing with time, but keeping Justin’s spirit alive in their music. A picture of his smiling face still stands behind the drums in Dynohunter’s home studio, a place the band has recently been working hard in.

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Dynohunter’s 2015 full length album The Nomad was well received; since then they have released four EPs, with Rattle the Cage being their most recent. Their fifth and upcoming EP titled Tilmun is scheduled for release on December 13th, with the single dropping December 6th, just a couple of days before they headline The Bluebird Theater in Denver.

Dynohunter at   Knew Conscious  .

Dynohunter at Knew Conscious.

Being a musical experience of their own, Dynohunter is well worth seeing live.  If you can catch them this Friday, December 8th at The Bluebird Theater, you’ll be in for a treat with fresh music right out of the studio and onto the stage.

According to Reisen, “[Dynohunter] sure has a way of bringing that experiential aspect of music to life and if you’re coming into it open-minded, you’ll be taken on a journey of higher vibration; an hour and a half experience that leaves you feeling a little bit better and expanded.”  Spoken like a true Boulderite, Fred!

-Mirna

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

"It's Not Quite Techno; It's Not Quite House: Nicolas Jaar's Sold-Out Gothic Theatre Set Last Weekend

By: Mirna Tufekcic

Last Saturday, a friend hit me up to check out Nicolas Jaar at The Gothic Theatre in Denver. He had a spare guest pass and I took it on a whim. I didn’t know what to expect going in. I wasn’t even aware of the music genre I was about to witness. But man, was I in for a treat.

Jaar.

Jaar.

Nicolas Jaar is a 26-year-old mad scientist doing experiments with electronic music in front of massive crowds. It’s not quite techno; it’s not quite house, but it’s got both of those in there and then some. He is definitely pushing the envelope in this world of music. Apparently, none of his live performances are ever alike, and he is constantly improvising with live sampling onstage, a method which sends you on a journey between “rhythmic anguish” (his words) and meditative states with deep house beats, groovy rhythms, and otherworldly sounds which you just have to hear and feel for yourself. But, be warned, things may get trancey. Between the ambient, contemplative sounds and artfully composed lighting, it’s easy to get lost in the experience that is a Nicolas Jaar show… or to get really uncomfortable because you’re not sure what to make of what your eyes and ears are witnessing.

Check out Jaar’s “Swim/Mistress”:

Post-show I had the chance to roll backstage to meet the guy behind this crazy experience. As my friend and I strolled into the green room, Jaar must have caught me checking out his baseball hat. He looked up and said right off, “Man, I know this hat looks stupid and people are always asking why I wear one, but it actually has a purpose. It gives me shade so I see what I’m doing and it puts me in the zone.” From there, my chat with Jaar proved he is quirky and super easy going. His Chilean accent had the room charmed as he joked around, and when I revealed my journalistic tendencies with BolderBeat he laughed and smiled,“There could have been some good conversations here, but now that you told me that...” and the sentenced trailed off into all of us laughing. Touché, Nico.

Which by the way, yes, Nicolas Jaar goes by Nico. When I called him by his full name, he said, “Nicolas?” and a wave of nervousness set over me. “My father is the only one who calls me by that name, and only when I’ve done something wrong and I’m getting reprimanded for it.” he laughed. Ok, the dude’s got a sense of humor.  

Nicolas Jaar is at the tail end of his North American tour, of which many of his shows have sold out, including Denver’s. Jaar will jet to Europe next, and you can keep up with him here.

-Mirna

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