Welcome to our monthly series on new Colorado music. Every month we highlight five local musicians, five local music videos and five local songs. Go here to check out previous entries to the series. Are you a Denver artist with fresh music you would like us to check out? Send to Mariah.Hansen@303Magazine.com for consideration.
We’re only one month into 2020, and it’s already shaping up to be a good year for the Denver music scene. Just a few weeks into the new year, Rolling Stone heralded The Mile High City as a city in the midst of a music boom. While the local scene needs no reminders of how fantastic the music here is, we can all agree that it’s nice to receive recognition. With a spotlight pointed directly at our beloved city, the artists of Colorado have risen to the occasion – and we couldn’t be more excited to see what’s still to come.
Five New Up and Coming Local Acts
Listen if you like The Avett Brothers
There’s something special about Young Pine. Perhaps it’s their simple sound, which makes it clear that sometimes less truly is more. Or maybe it’s the fact that their lack of social media presence makes them seem mysterious and special. If we had to bet, we’d guess that it’s the authenticity of their sound which gives the impression that they’ll make music whether or not anyone wants to hear it. If our guess is correct, then we’re in luck because we definitely want to hear more of their music and we can only hope that they continue making it.
Talk Is Cheap
Listen if you like Fit For An Autopsy
Talk Is Cheap erupted onto the Denver scene precisely one year ago. While they may still be a young band, they’ve already made an impact, garnering praise from Vincent Bennet of The Acacia Strain. After playing a shocking number of shows in the last year, it’s easy to see why such a new band already has an impressive following and we predict that their fan base will only continue to grow as Talk Is Cheap continues to carve out space for themselves in the local scene.
Listen if you like Cameo
Funky beats, uptempo melodies and easy vocals dominate Monk Gyatso’s brief discography. Monk Gyatso’s music is perfect for dancing the night away, and we aren’t sure you’d be able to resist dancing along even if you wanted to.
Listen if you like Chuck Loeb
The Denver jazz scene is alive and well. If the success of the Five Points Jazz Festival isn’t enough proof, then fans need to look no further than Manycolors. The jazz group draws on slow jazz influences of the ’90s and layers them with slow hip-hop beats and just a pinch of funk. The end result is a relaxing sound that could serve as the soundtrack to almost anything.
Listen if you like Swans
It’s hard to know what to say about Kaepora. They’re a band that’s serious about not taking things too seriously. Their unique sound pushes the boundaries of rock, yet it still has the feel of classic rock. Finding a balance between serious rock music and parody, Kaepora has only released three songs to date. Keeping all of Denver on the edge of their seats, we’ll be anxiously waiting to see how their sound evolves.
Five New Local Songs
Motion Trap — “Alaska”
Listen if you like The XX
The moment we’ve been waiting for has finally arrived. Motion Trap has finally released the single for their cover of Maggie Rogers’ song “Alaska.” While they first debuted their cover for our cover challenge over the summer, we’ve been waiting months for the official release of the single. Fortunately, the wait is over and the single is here – and we plan on keeping it on repeat for the foreseeable future.
Lady Denim — “Sweaty T-Shirts”
Listen if you like Babe Rainbow
With a new EP set to release this year – though it definitely won’t be released soon enough – Lady Denim’s latest single gives a glimpse into the distinctive sound that the band has created for themselves. Still new to the Colorado scene, Lady Denim has already made their mark on local music. If their latest single is any indication of what’s still to come, then they have a bright future ahead of them – and fans should be counting down the days to Lady Denim’s next EP is released.
Redivider — “Delphiction”
Listen if you like From Indian Lakes
A departure from their previous sound, Redivider’s latest EP demonstrates the impressive growth the band has had since the release of their debut EP in 2017. Layering easy melodies over post-hardcore influences, Redivider proves that they’re talented musicians who aren’t afraid to take risks.
Float Like A Buffalo — “So Damn Cold”
Listen if you like The String Cheese Incident
Float Like A Buffalo ended 2019 on a high note. After being crowned the best funk band in Denver and opening for Face Vocal Band at Red Rocks this summer, it’s hard to imagine Float Like A Buffalo could ever disappoint their fans. Their latest single proves that the funk group has no plans of slowing down – and they continue to set the bar higher for every band that chooses to follow in their funky footsteps.
King Cardinal — “Long Goodbye”
Listen if you like Glorietta
While Denver natives may struggle to relate, many transplants will have no trouble connecting with King Cardinal’s latest single – particularly if they’re from a small town. Lyrically, the song longs to escape the mundane life a person can find themselves trapped in when they live in a small community. The sorrowful melody carries the voice of frontman Brennan Mackey, as the song explores a desire to traverse new and more exciting avenues.
Five New Local Music Videos
Nathaniel Rateliff – “What a Drag”
Listen if you like Mandolin Orange
Serenading a room full of mannequins, Nathaniel Rateliff moves as effortlessly through the video as he does through “What A Drag.” Slow and dominated by Rateliff’s distinctive vocals, the song is perfectly accompanied by the monochromatic video that leaves you questioning what’s real by the end of it all.
Mandy Groves – “Done With Me”
Listen if you like Willow
After sustaining injuries that left her recovering in bed for weeks, Mandy Groves returned to the studio with a vengeance. With a fresh new perspective and fully rested vocal cords, her latest release is slower and more sultry than her previous releases. The third track on her third EP, “Done With Me” is clearly something special – and we love it.
Chronologue – “Inevitability”
Listen if you like Nick Waterhouse
Despite the fact that the duration of the video is set in a hallway, Chronologue’s music video for “Inevitability” will take you places. The video flashes from one band member to the next, in time with the jazzy tune. While much of the video places vocalist Yasmina Bradley-Belcaid at the forefront, each member of the group finds plenty of time in the spotlight in this video.
Blood Incantation – “Slave Species of the Gods”
Listen if you like Necrophagist
The first track off their most recent release, “Slave Species of the Gods” poses questions about the mystery of the universe, and more importantly it posits answers. However, what’s most noteworthy about the “Slave Species of the Gods” and the accompanying songs on the EP is how technically advanced the music is. Demonstrating that death metal is more than just loud noises, Blood Incantation’s musicianship takes center stage in this heavy song.
Tennis – “Need Your Love”
Listen if you like Neon Indian
Much to the delight of their fans, Tennis’ latest video stays true to who the band has always been. Easy to listen to, but never boring, Tennis is a Denver favorite for good reason. The video for “Need Your Love” is fresh and cool without even trying.