The best concerts in Denver this weekend

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Jason Nocito

PASSION PIT @ 1STBANK CENTER | FRI, 3/1/13
Passion Pit began in as a solo project of lead singer and keyboard player Michael Angelakos in 2007. The project quickly fleshed out into a full band that combined a keen sense for upbeat pop melodies with lyrics that didn't exactly try to sugarcoat the complex emotional life and experiences of adulthood. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based act's debut full-length, 2009's Manners, yielded a handful of songs that garnered exposure on shows like Gossip Girl and Big Love, setting the stage for its follow-up, last year's Gossamer, which gained positive notices and eventually resulted in an invitation for the group to perform on Saturday Night Live.

See also:
- Passion Pit's Jeff Apruzzese on SNL and getting hugged by the dude from Portlandia
- Reed Bruemmer and Richie Tice of Speedwolf on "Denver 666"
- Mickey Hart on Rhythm Devils, sampling the Big Bang and the healing power of music

SPEEDWOLF @ HI-DIVE | FRI, 3/1/13
The members of Speedwolf specialize in brand of no frills metal in the vein of Motörhead and Venom, played with the playful ferocity of a hardcore band. The guys are not necessarily carrying the torch for that older style of heavy music as much as they're embodying what made it so good in the first place. Without trying to fit any particular subscene, Speedwolf can play metal shows and punk shows with equal ease, and that's because the music does not fit a strict stereotype.

THROTTLEBOMB @ HI-DIVE | SAT, 3/2/13
Bart McCrorey is probably best known for his skate-punk outfit Frontside Five. Throttlebomb isn't a quantum leap from that, but it's more a synthesis of speed metal and glam. It's a bit like Motörhead, but with more of a focus on melody: A backbone of boogie and blues rock informs the songwriting, which is nonetheless splintery and aggressive. With Low Gravity's Adam Mullins on drums and Jenn Rad, formerly of the Blackouts, on bass, there's a solid groove that gives McCrorey and guitarist Justin Delz a foundation from which to indulge in tasty guitar solos. Throttlebomb will release its debut album at this show, which should recall the glory days of the 15th St. Tavern, where hard rock and punk were always on tap.


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