There Was a Tribal Ritual and a Lone Cellist at the Mercury Cafe on Saturday

Categories: Last Night

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Tom Murphy
Itchy-O at Mercury Cafe
Fresh off a two-week tour, Itchy-O was still clearly in well-toned performance condition on Saturday night at the Mercury Cafe. The band has always had a strong physical presence, and that, coupled with its mysterious, musical cultist appearance, means the thirty-plus member outfit is impossible to ignore or forget. But something about this night, with the custom lighting handled by assistant techs, who also made sure the proper level of fog floated throughout the Mercury, made for an especially eerie and affecting performance.

See also: Itchy-O Plots World Domination With Jello Biafra

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Shovels and Rope Bring Denver Roots, Southern Soul to the Ogden

Categories: Last Night

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Steve Truesdell for the Riverfront Times. More here.
Shovels and Rope onstage earlier this year in St. Louis.
Before Shovels and Rope performed Saturday night at the Ogden Theatre, the crowd there was trying to claim them. There was plenty of discussion about the potential Colorado roots of husband-and-wife-duo Michael Trent and Carry Ann Herst, who champion Charleston, South Carolina as their hometown.

See also: Eleven Famous Musicians Who Recently Moved to Colorado

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Denver's Newest All-Ages Venue Is Inside a Skate Park in Englewood

Categories: Last Night

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Isa Jones
Marathon
There's a lot of distinct sounds echoing through a vast warehouse hidden at the end of residential street in Englewood: the scraping of wood against metal, the gut-wrenching thud of bodies hitting plywood, the rolling of wheels on concrete, and on a raised stage, the voice of the lead singer of Marathon, a screamo band from Golden playing its first ever show.

See also: The Ten Best Unexpected Places to See Live Music in Denver

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Long Live the New and Improved Hi-Dive

Categories: Last Night

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Courtesy of the hi-dive
Recent renovations at the hi-dive included raising the ceiling considerably.
The hi-dive is the kind of place where you'll be chatting with your friend near the bar and turn to see that the guitar player from the stage has decided to play his solo right behind you. It's the kind of place where a band will hand out inflatable swords and have someone provide beer bongs to the crowd, a place where punks, hipsters, older professionals and everyone in between can revel together in whatever loud, ridiculous, (and often amazing) thing is happening upon the small stage. It's anarchy, it's punk-rock, it's always a damn good time. Those reasons are why the hi-dive has lasted eleven years, and the reason we hope it will be around eleven more.

See also: 49 of the Hi-Dive's Most Unbelievable Shows

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DeVotchKa Is the Perfect Halloween Band

Categories: Last Night

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Courtesy of Breana Cowart
Backstage at the Boulder Theater with DeVotchKa
The tone for DeVotchKa's annual Halloween celebration was set as soon as I walked into the Boulder Theater behind a tall man with a tall, faux-bug-light apparatus attached to his head.

The Boulder Theater has a capacity of 850, a far cry from the 9,500 that can fit into Red Rocks, which DeVotchKa sold out in July. Seeing the unique Denver-born gypsy-rock group -- which has been an exceptional international success since scoring the film Little Miss Sunshine in 2006 -- on its home turf in such an intimate venue, on such a festive night, is a treat I'd somehow missed out on since moving to Boulder from San Francisco in 2008.

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The Legendary Lucinda Williams Comes to Town to Reveal America's Dark Side

Categories: Last Night

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Jon Gitchoff for the Riverfront Times. Full slideshow here.
On Halloween night, Lucinda Williams cut into the core of her songs, performing a bare-bones acoustic set at Twist and Shout and offering a preview of her appearance tonight at the Ogden Theatre.

Upon entering, fans were given the option of purchasing her excellent new album, Down Where The Spirit Meets The Bone. Doing so gave those fans a pink wristband which allowed early entrance into the performance area and a chance to meet Lucinda after the show.

See also: The Five Best Places to Buy Records in Denver

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Alt-J Revives the Slow Jam at the Fillmore Auditorium

Categories: Last Night

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Timothy Norris for LA Weekly. Full slideshow here.
Alt-J performs at the Greek Theatre last week.
Alt-J is among rare company as an internationally successful pop act that attracts mostly 20-somethings who danced elegantly on every spare piece of Fillmore floor - and stairway, to security's dismay. Nowhere to be seen were the loud-mouthed bro-downers and screaming teenagers frequently populating the concerts of the band's peers.

It was during the rising English "folktronica" quartet's stunningly original version of the Bill Withers classic "Lovely Day," the entrance to a four-song encore, that it hit me: slow is cool. Slow is powerful. Slow may even be the new fast.

See also: How Fear of Music Convinced Me the Talking Heads Aren't Pretentious Turds

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Pearl Jam Celebrated its 24th Birthday With a Rousing Denver Show and All the Wine

Categories: Last Night

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Eric Gruneisen
Pearl Jam's 24th anniversary - which the band celebrated last night with a raucous, rarity-filled, tour-ending barnburner of a concert at the Pepsi Center - closed with lead guitarist Mike McCready playing "the Star Spangled Banner" Hendrix-style while the rest of the Seattle quartet sprayed champagne on the Denver crowd.

It began with Justin Morneau (your 2014 National League batting champ) finding his seat as frontman Eddie Vedder said "Welcome to the last night of our tour" as Pearl Jam settled into the euphorically mellow "Release," which is where the group's 10-million-selling 1991 debut Ten concluded.

See also: The Ryan Adams Comedy Hour Last Night was Awesome


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Why the Hell Do I (Still) Love Metro Station?

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Instagram/CocoDavies
I had to go alone. I mean, it was partially by choice -- I had an extra ticket, but I was too embarrassed to ask anyone if they wanted to go with me. Ultimately, I went to Summit Music Hall last night to see Metro Station by myself because I not-so-secretly love them, but very-secretly am ashamed of how I feel about the band. I'm embarrassed because I preach honesty when it comes to music taste -- you should like what you like. Fuck guilty pleasures. All music that is good to you is good music.

But there I was, alone on the side of the stage in a room less than half-full of screaming teenagers, singing along to every word of "Kelsey." "I'll swim the ocean for you" I sang, (to a girl with a name popular for almost whole generation of people younger than me.) "Whoa, oh, oh, oh, Kelsey." I think it was right then, as I watched a room of Kelseys screaming "oh, Kelsey," that I decided to say fuck it. I love Metro Station, even if the band is kind of the worst.

See also: Miley Cyrus' Bangerz Tour proves she's pop music's greatest role model (seriously)

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Some of Denver's Most Challenging Music Finds a New Audience at DU

Categories: Last Night

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Tom Murphy
Concrete Mixer at The Newman Center for the Performing Arts, University of Denver
This edition of Concrete Mixer found a rare showing and audience at Newman Center for the Performing Arts for the Convocation for the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver. Past editions of this event featuring live musique concrète have been held at The Walnut Room because of the superb sound quality of that room. The Newman Center, designed for various kinds of performance, measured up as well. The audience was mostly students though the show was free and open to the general public. DU is certainly no stranger to experimental music on campus, but it is certainly rare for this sort of performance to happen at a university in general.

See also: Seven of Denver's Most Underrated Bands

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