The six must-see acts at Arise Music Festival

Categories: Music Festivals

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Lalena Jaramillo
Catch Project Aspect and a whole bunch of other acts at Arise Festival this weekend.

The Arise Music Festival kicks off today at Sunrise Ranch in Loveland and runs through Sunday. Take one look at the schedule, and you'll quickly see there are an overwhelming number of acts on the bill. We narrowed it down to the half-dozen acts you must see. Keep reading to see which ones we picked, and feel free to weigh in below with the ones you're most looking forward to checking out.

See Also: Project Aspect's Jay Jaramillo gives back with the Mile High Sound Movement

MICHAEL FRANTI & SPEARHEAD @ CENTER STAGE | 8:30 P.M., SAT
Since 1986, Michael Franti has been making music with a social conscience. From his industrial punk days in the Beatnigs to the hip-hop-leaning Disposable Heroes to his current (and most commercially successful) project, Michael Franti & Spearhead, which has been going strong since 1994, Franti has become renown for his social activism through his music. Whether he's spitting aware (and angry) rhymes or playing his "rebel rock," as he calls it, a sort of fusion of folk, pop, hip-hop and whatever else is influencing him at the time, Franti is consistently compelling.

PROJECT ASPECT @ SYNTONIC STAGE | 2:30 A.M., FRI/SAT
Jay Jaramillo, better known for the music he makes as Project Aspect, is a festival veteran, with appearances at Sonic Bloom and Wakarusa. Influenced by the likes of Glitch Mob, VibeSquad and Spork, Jaramillo began toying with the idea of electronic production under the name Project Aspect five years ago, after attending a Sound Tribe Sector 9 show and after-party. Since then, the producer, a co-founder of the Mile High Sound Movement, has built up a good deal of momentum in the scene for both himself and his crew, earning a spot as a go-to opener for acts like PANTyRAiD and STS9, whose 1320 Records imprint has issued three Project Aspect releases -- two original scores and one remix album -- in the past year and a half.

GREENSKY BLUEGRASS @ CENTER STAGE | 6:15 P.M., FRI
For the better part of the past fifteen years, this band from Kalamazoo, Michigan, has toured like it was a life mission. True to its name, its roots are in bluegrass -- but there's also an improvisational side to the music that recalls the more interesting guitar work of Jerry Garcia. On the strength of hundreds of shows, not to mention a mastery of the art form, Greensky Bluegrass won the Telluride Bluegrass Festival Band Competition in 2006. Combining covers of traditional songs with excellent original material, the group is at its best in the live setting, as the All Access series of live albums attest. Greensky's extended improvisations, like some of the best music from the Allman Brothers and the Dead, are more inspired reinterpretation than indulgence.



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