A Rare “Wolf” from London Comes to Red Rocks: Wolf Alice

April 30, 2016

If you’re lucky enough to have heard the band from North London known as Wolf Alice you know that they are a band of many genres. The uniqueness of both their music and the members themselves will compliment the uniqueness of the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheater at the upcoming show on May 2nd with The 1975.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Khruangbin — The Universe Smiles Upon You

November 19, 2015

While I find the majority of instrumentals have a regional style, not always glaring, but almost always present. L.A. jazz, Delta Blues, the sample heavy style of production prevalent in the East coast, generally speaking there’s something you can grab on to. Khruangbin plays like a musical atlas, sending fiery frets to Japan, then Brazil, and back over to Africa. The eighth track, cheekily titled “The Man Who Took My Sunglasses,” almost creates the illusion of needing them. Blinding sun beams reflect off polished surfboards and sparkling fret boards, cutting through swirling cigarette smoke on its way. Four tracks earlier, guitarist Mark Speer cools the jets to a low roar, infusing in its exhaust at first a wiff of the Far East, then an utterly American crashing collapse of guitar, amp, and kit.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Coldplay — Adventure Of A Lifetime

November 12, 2015

The track is joyful in a resurgent kind of way. Driving leads and a surprisingly groovy rhythm for a pop band (let alone a pop band of such drear and atmosphere) cloud your mind like the smoke from a caterpillar’s hookah. It’s relentless and irresistibly toe tapping. Jam packed into their wooing, if not predictable, brand of pop are notes of Earth Wind & Fire, Phoenix, and fretwork from U2’s The Edge as well as modern pop titans, like Pharell, Justin Timberlake, and Daft Punk, especially the latter, considering their recent poppy-funky love affair. I feel the song chip away at winter’s frost, and as frontman Chris Martin heralds chorus after chorus of “I feel alive again!” I can’t help but agree.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Alabama Shakes — Joe

November 5, 2015

Stylistically, the track actually falls nicely between the two records, meshing cozy Southern hospitality with smoldering soul. The tune kicks off slow, enchant us with us a gated chrous across shiny pickups. Not long thereafter, the incomparable Brittany Howard welcomes herself to the track. At this point, it borders on the clichéd to talk about the thundering soul machine that are the pipes of Brittany Howard, but the vocal, as is typical for most Alabama Shakes content, truly is the star of the show. Murphy works the crowd like melted ropes of taffy, jumping from croon to croan at the pluck of a string. It’s a joy to listen to her work, and the crowd feels the same.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Big Grams — Self Titled

October 1, 2015

I’d like to see the “to do list” for this record. It must read something like: “1. Make awesome music. 2. See #1.” Yes, it’s simple, but it’s simply fun. If Big Grams set out to make music to dance/copulate to, I think they hit the nail on the head. Phantogram released their most recent record last year, and the last time OutKast put out new music, I was a Junior in highschool. (Wow, I’m old.) While there doesn’t appear to be any tour dates in Big Grams’ future, I guess you’ll just have to settle for playing this record on repeat.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Beirut — No No No

September 17, 2015

When I find a new artist (whether it be a new single, a new album, or by recommendation) if I can, I like to start at the beginning of their discography. If I’m really going to get a feel for the art being created, I think an important part of that is knowing where they started from. This holds particularly true for this week’s subject of TTT, Albuquerque bred pop outfit, Beirut. Though their name might betray their more worldly senses, there’s not much you can do to prepare yourself for the jangling gypsy chorus this is Beirut’s debut record, Gulag Orkestar. The record does enough to make you scratch your head, and becomes even more confounding when you find out it was recorded almost completely by Beirut frontman and founder, Zach Condon.

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Top Tunes Thursday: Travis $cott — Rodeo

September 10, 2015

When your first public appearance has you labeled as a protege of Kanye West, it’s safe to say you travel with heavy expectations on your shoulders. When Travi$ Scott was revealed as one of the top producer’s behind West’s blistering thrash-rap opus, Yeezus, the countdown to his solo album began. While his debut EP Owl Pharaoh failed to impress, his follow-up Days Before Rodeo did much to increase the appetites of Scott’s swelling fanbase. Now, two plus years after the source of his fame, Travi$ Scott has released his highly anticipated solo record, Rodeo. Without giving too much away, it lives up to the name.

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