The best punk shows in Denver in November
FRI | NEGATIVE APPROACH at MARQUIS THEATER | 11/23/13
In a just world, John Brannon would be as hallowed a punk icon as anyone out of early '80s and D.C. Hardcore. As the frontman for the Detroit-based Negative Approach, Brannon was involved in making some of the most confrontational and pointed music of the era. Negative Approach's music captured post-industrial Midwest alienation and hopelessness with stark accuracy and shot it through with a befittingly dark and seething emotional intensity. Though the band broke up in 1984, and Brannon went on to other truly noteworthy projects, like Laughing Hyenas and Easy Action, Negative Approach got back together in 2006 and has been touring ever since. Seeing the commanding Brannon in any band is something unforgettable, but this show, which also features MDC, the Casualties and the Swellers, should be fantastic.
WEDS | MISFITS at SUMMIT MUSIC HALL | 11/20/13
During its first run with original singer Glenn Danzig from 1977-1983, Misfits established one of the most enduring influential bodies of work in the history of punk that made an indelible impact on the development and trajectory of not only punk but also goth rock and even metal. After years and years of legal battles, interpersonal acrimony and now with only bassist Jerry Only remaining from the original band, Misfits continues as a live band. If you're expecting the Danzig thing, don't go, but if you'd like to hear those classic songs done by someone who was there, Misfits still put on an entertaining show.
FRI | ANTI-FLAG at SUMMIT MUSIC HALL | 11/22/13
Formed in 1988 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Anti-Flag has never minced words in its denouncement of war, generally, the imperial ambitions of its home country, specifically, and the usual social ills that are perpetually neglected by the power elite of the United States. But Anti-Flag delivers that message with an upbeat tunefulness that doesn't sugar-coat the message, so much as make it accessible. It could be claimed the band can get polemical and that that undermines its impact, but there's no doubt these guys, by the sheer momentum of their longevity and ability to write good songs to go along with the lyrics, have changed the thinking of at least one section of America's youth, and that has to count for something.
THURS | SUBHUMANS at MARQUIS THEATER | 11/7/13
Formed in 1980 in Wiltshire, England, Subhumans were not the first anarcho-punk (that distinction probably belongs to either Crass or Poison Girls), but they were certainly one of the most important bands of that movement. The band's 1983 album, The Day the Country Died, released on its own Bluurg imprint, is one of the landmarks of anarcho/crust-punk. Though informed by humor, it is also one of the most pointed denouncements of war -- both internationally, as well as the class war waged by the rich, as represented by arch '80s punk villain Margaret Thatcher and everything she stood for. The band continues to throw musical poison darts at the Ayn Randian monster that refuses to die worldwide.