Is Record Store Day worth it?

Categories: Interviews

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Danielle Lirette
Record Store Day 2013 in Denver
Record Store Day is once again upon us, with its candy-colored vinyl and improbably in-store performances and endless lines. Like anything that becomes popular, the holiday is starting to develop detractors among music fans who see it as everything from a pain in the ass to a gimmicky, patronizing tourist trap.

We admit we have doubts of our own, so we asked Paul Epstein from Twist and Shout and Brian Rooney from Angelo's to tell us what they think of the holiday. Is Record Store Day a way to "celebrate and spread the unique culture surrounding independently owned record stores" like it says in the press kit?


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A mostly ridiculous conversation with Magic Cyclops about his greatest hits

Categories: Interviews

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Magic Cyclops on American Idol. Video
We'll stop talking about it when it stops making us laugh.
Magic Cyclops returns from the rumors of his premature 2011 death to perform at Wax Trax Records this Saturday, April 19th for Record Store Day. For the occasion he is also releasing a limited edition of his "Captain Badass" single on square vinyl. That night he will reprise his performance and debut the "Captain Badass" video. The Cyclops is perhaps best known for various antics and events around town including his long-running stint at as a karaoke host at the Hi-Dive and his turn as the faux-pampered, ersatz-English pop star with an over-the-top persona. We caught up with the always entertainingly self-deprecating Magic to talk about where he's been, his most memorable performance moments and his upcoming video variety program Dungeons & Dorks.

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Black Lamb's non-medical cure for depression: "Sex or drugs or rock and roll."

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All illustrations by Noah Van Sciver
Editor's note: Each week, illustrator Noah Van Sciver asks a Colorado band or musician four questions and then draws their conversation. We call the resulting comic "4 Questions: Comic Strip Interview" because we have no use for obscurity. You can see more of Van Sciver's work and even buy it on his website.

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The seven best songs about resurrection for Easter

Categories: Lists

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Flickr/Dan Century
Easter is upon us. The holiday celebrating the death and resurrection of the Christian messiah, Jesus of Nazareth. Pontius Pilate washed his hands, the Roman emperor Tiberius probably heard nothing about the incident from a far-off province of the empire. To Pliny the Younger, Tacitus and Josephus he was not much more than a footnote. But here we are, just shy of two thousand years after the execution of Christ and, as the late Bill Hicks noted, celebrating the event with chocolate candy and bunny rabbits hiding eggs in the night. As a perhaps more fitting tribute to the capacity of the offspring of divine beings to return from the dead, here is a list of some of the best songs about creatures that have returned from the grave.

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A compilation to benefit homeless families on Colfax is out next week

Categories: Hearsay

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A year ago, local music icon and ColfaxAvenue.com webmaster Jonny Barber released the first volume of his Colfax-themed compilation that included acts like Slim Cessna's Auto Club, Five Iron Frenzy and Andy Palmer. Now Barber is set to release the second installment of the Colfax Compilation on Tuesday, April 22, a day after the Root 40 Festival kicks off at various venues on Colfax. This year's disc includes fifteen acts, including White Fudge, BLKHRTS, the Hacks and Natural Selection.


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The Knife's Karin Dreijer Andersson: "I think norms and standards are really dangerous."

Categories: Interviews

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Ian Pearce
The Knife (due Monday, April 21, at The Fillmore Auditorium) from Stockholm, Sweden, is an experimental synth pop duo comprised of Karin Dreijer Andersson and her brother Olof Dreijer. Since the project's founding in 1999, it has explored unusual rhythmic ideas. Its 2003 album Deep Cuts garnered the group an international audience, and the band toured on the strength of 2006's Silent Shout. Known for a theatrical performance style and costumes designed partly to obscure specific personal identity, The Knife is one of the few pop groups of recent years to have maintained a certain mystique. That has only enhanced the impact of its music.

But on the 2013 album Shaking the Habitual, The Knife challenged its long-held methods, both in terms of making music and also the visual presentation of it. The album is also the outfit's most directly political to date, so perhaps Andersson and Dreijer felt that even superficial barriers between itself and its audience, to the extent practically possible, were best left behind. Recently, we had the rare opportunity to speak with Andersson about the ideas behind Shaking the Habitual, how The Knife has applied its ideals on tours and her commitment to questioning established norms.

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The Clyfford Still Museum summer concert series lineup

Categories: Music News

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Courtesy of the Clyfford Still Museum.
Clyfford Still was one of the 20th century's most innovative artists. That doesn't mean the artist didn't have a love for music. Still's fondness for blues, jazz, classical music and more is part of the inspiration behind the live performance series set to hit his eponymous Denver museum this summer.

Now in its third year, the series is a joint effort between the Clyfford Still Museum and Swallow Hill Music. Free outdoor performances by the Springdale Quartet, Jayme Stone and Fierce Bad Rabbit will bring a different element of expression to the modern art museum. Museum directors hope the shows will continue to add a new kind of ambience to the Golden Triangle neighborhood.

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Riot Fest returns to Denver September 19 to 21

Categories: Music Festivals

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Eric Gruneisen
Last year at Riot Fest in Denver
Riot Fest expanded its reach to Colorado last year, bringing The Replacements, Guided By Voices, FLAG and many more to May Farms.

The Chicago-based festival, celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, will return to Denver this fall with the help of local concert promotion company Soda Jerk Presents. Riot Fest promises "more carnival rides and attractions" and more local food options, but other than that we don't know much. Ticket and lineup information is still coming, but we'll let you know when we hear anything.

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The ten best stoner metal bands

Categories: Lists

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Weedeater
No other musical genre (aside from reggae) has a stronger connection to the cannabis lifestyle than heavy metal, hence the term 'stoner metal.' But of course, this term describes a subgenre that can encompass different types of metal music and mean different things to different folks; whether you're into that slow burning, hazy sound or a faster heavier more intense variety, there are as many ' stoner' metal bands as there are strains of marijuana. The following artists are best heard in a more mellow state of mind; but be warned, while some of these bands might look stoned in appearance, they all possess similar sound waves and patterns that heavy are enough to shatter your glass bong. So burn a bowl of your best stash, and turn your speakers up loud for the following. Here's our list of the Top 10 Stoner Metal Bands.

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OFF!'s Dimitri Coats: "A lot of so-called punk has moved away from what made it exciting."

Categories: Interviews

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OFF!
OFF! (due Saturday, April 19, at The Marquis Theatre) is a bit of a hardcore supergroup, founded by Keith Morris formerly of Black Flag and Circle Jerks and Dimitri Coats who was best known as a member of heavy rock band Burning Brides. The two became friends not long after Coats and the Brides made Los Angeles their home. Beyond their personal chemistry, there was an immediate musical bond the two men shared. Along with former Redd Kross bassist Steven McDonald and ex-Clikatat Ikatowi, Rocket From The Crypt and Hot Snakes drummer Mario Rubalcaba, Morris and Coats wrote the kind of simple and direct music that made hardcore so compelling in its early days. The band just released its third album, Wasted Years.

Before OFF!'s show this Saturday at the Marquis Theater, we had a chance to chat with the amiable Coats about dropping out of Juilliard for rock and roll, how Los Angeles has opened up so many opportunities for him beyond just music and how the artwork of Raymond Pettibon has been the perfect imagery for OFF!

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