Tuesday, July 28, 2015

PREVIEW: Jen Hartswick Super Jam Feat. Members of Trey Anastasio Band, Umphrey's McGee & Lettuce

The 1up - Colfax
Denver, CO

Join us on Friday, July 31 for Jen Hartswick Super Jam feat. Natalie Cressman (Trey Anastasio Band), Kris Myers (Umphrey's McGee), Adam Smirnoff (Lettuce), Eric Bloom (Lettuce), Steve Watkins (Allen Stone) & Dezron Douglas (Black Lion) at The 1up - Colfax in Denver, CO!

Tickets are available at www.the-1up.com/listing!


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Dopapod w/ Vokab Kompany 7.15.15 (Photos)

Nectar Lounge
Seattle, WA

Photos By Scott Shrader (J. Scott Shrader Photography)

View Scott's Full Photo Gallery Here!


Monday, July 20, 2015

PREVIEW: Marco Benevento 7.24 & 7.25.15

The 1up - Colfax
Denver, CO

Join us on Friday July 24 and Saturday July 25 for Marco Benevento at The 1up - Colfax in Denver, CO! Support includes Garrett Sayers Trio (Friday) and Jaden Carlson Band (Saturday)!

Purchase Friday Tickets Here: www.tinyurl.com/p727oo8

Purchase Saturday Tickets Here: www.tinyurl.com/qbz7xel


Thursday, July 16, 2015

Jurassic 5 & Donte Peace 7.10.15 (Photos)

Monday, July 13, 2015

Genetics: Dr. Spookymuffin

Words By Brad Yeakel (Opti Mystic Outlooks)

Once I got past the name of the album, I dove into the first track, “INS” which featured Pete Wall on saxophone, and Lotus’ percussionist Chuck Morris. The dreamy funk was eclectic but had shades of various other artists from Moe to the Ozric Tentacles. There was also a brief musical nod to “Inspector Gadget.” “Whale Song” continued the trend towards progressive instrumental funktronica grooves and amped up the energy. I really enjoyed the energy and vibe of the song. “RED” was a short tune with increasing reckless abandon. At first I thought I was heading for a Floyd-inspired tune, but as the beat kicked in, the tune had a far more aggressive element. It created a nice contrast to the next tune. “Osirus” featured Chris Pandolfi of the Infamous Stringdusters on banjo, and seemed to completely change the complexion of the album. The tune explored a folky soundscape with Olde World musical elements, though I couldn’t quite identify exactly which elements. Celtic? Maybe. The instruments all sounded nice and clean, but a bit subdued. Perhaps it was intentional as it made everything have a somewhat sub-conscious feel.

“Numerality” had a developing enthusiasm. It seemed to gain momentum as the band got deeper into the song. It may have been one of my favorite tracks on the album, and it was honestly pretty close to the sound I’d been looking for lately. I’ve been on the hunt for laid back, groovy, electrofunk, and the overall vibe of the album fit the bill. The end of “Numerality” featured some Umphrey’s-esque guitar work, and served to snap me out of their hypnotizing groove-garden. “Trident” brought more of the rock element to the foreground, though the electronic element still factored heavily. The mastering throughout the album was excellent, and I found myself really excited for the guys in the band. They had put together a quite solid debut effort. “Toss N’ Wash” fit in the framework of the album nicely and provided a sunny kind of element. The bright guitar tone was as crisp and clean as fresh laundry… maybe that’s where the name came from.

“Metrognome” began with a videogame vibe, and quickly morphed into some fat, wet funk. Traversing a variety of styles and emotions, the song seemed to be pulling on some energy from a high tech studio in the untouched wilderness. I was sure the title influenced my brain in that assessment, but, so be it. “Once Again” mellowed things out and gave my ears room to breathe for a moment. There was some slick guitar work on that tune also. The title track rounded out what I felt was a tight studio effort for the Michigan-turned-Coloradoan band. For an entirely instrumental album, I was surprisingly engaged with the music throughout the whole. Nothing got stale.

While I felt the album's title was probably better reserved as a pet name for a beloved Golden Retriever, the music had far more substance. I guess with a name like Genetics I was hoping the album would be called something like "Chromosome" or something. Regardless, the album was a nice journey through electro groovescapes and I left satisfied.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Cornmeal Slow Street: An Exercise in Giving Pause

Words & Photo By Nicholas Stock (Fat Guerilla Productions)

Cornmeal has always been the little band that could. Hailing from Chicago, Cornmeal has been a working ensemble for fifteen years. Most fans are aware of the exodus of long time fiddler Allie Kral, but the real story is how this band has evolved in the intervening years. Personally I’ve been a fan going all the way back to the second Summer Camp Music Festival. Through lineup changes and a relentless touring schedule, this band has persevered and emerged from uncertainty with a new album that details the journey quite elegantly.

While Drew Littel on drums and Scott Tipping on guitar have had some time to settle in, Phil Roach has only been a full time member of Cornmeal since January. Wavy Dave on banjo and Chris Gangi on bass are the stalwart veterans that have continued to carry this musical torch since the beginning. Slow Street is the band’s first studio album in 9 years. The album features ten original tracks with several guest musicians including Anders Beck from Greensky Bluegrass.

The songs are utterly familiar because several have been road tested since before the Nowaks left. The difference is there are some apparent tempo changes and a polish that only a full production can create. “Goodnight, My Darling” features some beautiful harmonies for some high-energy bluegrass with just a taste of melancholy. “Coming Back Home” takes on an almost gospel feel, while “Lay Me Down” features some impeccable picking from Wavy Dave on the banjo. “Oh Leah Lea” has become a fan favorite sing along in recent years; it was recorded with an emphasis on the twang. “Long Hard Road” almost feels like a cowpunk tune in this version with Phil Roach really earning his keep on the violin. “All Things Must Change” could have easily been the title track. This song exemplifies everything the band has gone through since Kral’s departure and more.

“Can you hear those highway blues calling out your name?” –Lyric from “All Things Must Change”

This song is exquisitely recorded with crystal clear tracking. “I’ll Be Looking At You” is another crowd-pleasing love song with a lot of history being played in a live setting. “Old Virginia” takes a more delicate approach with some beautiful slide guitar work. This song is just masterful in every way. Another tune that references Cornmeal’s struggle to find firm footing is “Rise Above.” This is really a song about redemption. The album closing “Trouble Gonna Find Me” is a high-energy throw down that almost feels like Porky Pig ending a cartoon. "That’s all folks!"

So what we have is an incredibly intelligent and referential album from Cornmeal. There is no question that the last few years have been turbulent for this jamgrass band from Chicago. It seems that with this release and the addition of Roach on fiddle that Cornmeal is poised once again to dominate the Midwest music scene. Go check out Slow Street. It’s everything we’ve been waiting for.


Thursday, July 9, 2015

PREVIEW: Oteil & Roosevelt's All-Star Jam 7.15 - 7.17.15

Join us July 15 - 17 for Oteil Burbridge & Roosevelt Collier's All-Star Jam in Colorado!

-Wednesday July 15 at Vail Bluegrass Summer Series

All-Stars: Oteil, Roosevelt, Andy Thorn (Leftover Salmon), Rob Eaton (The Drunken Hearts) Jr. & Alwyn Robinson (Leftover Salmon)

Tickets: No Cover

*Special Latenight Super Jam at Shakedown Bar: www.tinyurl.com/qd83zuv

-Thursday July 16 at The 1up - Colfax in Denver, CO

All-Stars: Oteil, Rosie, Nigel Hall & Anthony Cole w/ Special Guests Tori Pater Band

Tickets: www.tinyurl.com/ppmwogh

-Friday July 17 at The 1up - Colfax in Denver, CO

All-Stars: Oteil, Rosie, Nigel Hall & Anthony Cole w/ Special Guests Genetics

Tickets: www.tinyurl.com/qhazfvc