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 [email protected] for consideration.
As the summer months draw to a close, the local music community has released a slew of songs that feel perfect for warm summer nights. Whether upbeat and happy or calming and laid back, these songs are sure to strike an emotional chord with listeners.
Five New Up and Coming Local Acts
Listen if you like Hippo Campus
A Denver native and one of Youth On Record’s Gold Music Ambassador’s, San Andrea is an explosive new addition to the local music scene. With the release of his debut single this summer, San Andrea makes it clear that his indie-pop sound won’t go unnoticed in the Colorado music scene — or anywhere else.
Listen if you like Harry Styles
A quintet with a modern sound, The Keeps released their first single this summer making them one of the newest additions to the Denver music scene. Their debut single “Sugar” feels right at home amongst other local music, with catchy lyrics that are melody driven and easy to sing along to.
Listen if you like The Arctic Monkeys
Though the alternative rock duo has been a part of the Denver music scene for the last six years, Blakk Mantra’s recent releases mark a distinctive new direction for the pair. Softening their rock sound, Blakk Mantra’s latest singles approach indie territory, leaving song meanings open to interpretation by listeners.
Listen if you like Turnover
No stranger to the Denver music scene, Hellocentral has been growing their catalog since the release of their debut EP in 2018. Since then, they’ve released a handful of singles, with a new EP in progress. The indie-pop quartet has developed a distinctive sound that places them amongst indie favorites like Turnover with classic pop-punk lyrics reminiscent of bands like Moose Blood.
Listen if you like Blink-182
Denver-based band The Mazlows’ classic pop-punk sound makes an excellent addition to the local scene. Lyrics dripping with classic genre themes, such as leaving your hometown behind, combine with guitar-driven riffs and emotive vocals to create a sound that is reminiscent of genre heavy-hitters like New Found Glory and Blink-182.
Five New Local Songs
Joseph Lamar — “Paradise 1”
Listen if you like Frank Ocean
Joseph Lamar’s most recent EP, Paradise, is dripping with religious themes and charges forward with boundary-pushing music. The opening track, “Paradise 1” signals both the end and the beginning of something new while forcing listeners to grapple with Lamar’s reckoning with religious themes.
Kayla Marque — “Dancing”
Listen if you like H.E.R.
Right Brain, Kayla Marque’s newest EP, is the emotional result of the solo artist’s experience as a Black woman during a global pandemic. The entire EP showcases Marque’s growth as both an artist and an individual, however, “Dancing” is the most emotionally charged song on the release. Marque’s delicate vocals invite fans to listen before the beat falls carefully into place, guiding listeners through an emotional and transformative journey.
Pink Hawks — “Elote”
Listen if you like Mana
“Elote,” the most recent single from Chicano-Afrobeat orchestra Pink Hawks, is a call to dance. The robust sound of the song and the fast tempo marry together to highlight what Pink Hawks is all about. Pink Hawks draws on the roots of Chicano music, pulls influence from afrobeat and hip hop, ultimately creating something that is both classic and future focused.
Yugs — “Yo No Quiero La Patria Dividida”
Listen if you like Nightmares on Wax
“Yo No Quiero La Patria Dividida” is part song and part social meditation, from Boulder based producer Yugs. The single was inspired the recent political unrest and protests in both the United States and Chile. The somber single calls for reflection and encourages listeners to conceptualize what a kinder world would look like — then act to be part of a driving change to create that future.
Slow Caves — “Walk in the Park”
Listen if you like Modest Mouse
Turning their gaze inward, Slow Caves highlight the importance of loving yourself and those closest to you on “Walk in the Park.” Inspired by the calming feelings brought on by taking a leisurely walk, the self-care focused single couldn’t have come at a better time for local fans who might be focused on the tumultuous state of the world and forgetting to take care of themselves.
Five New Local Music Videos
Kiltro — “If I Lead”
Listen if you like Passenger
Shrouded in shadow in their latest music video, Kiltro invites fans inside their twisted kaleidoscope for “If I Lead.” The video features projector images of the band moving in stop-motion animation before the projector inevitably becomes overheated and begins to fill the screen with smoke.
Tejon Street Corner Thieves — “Never Meant to Be”
Listen if you like Bridge City Sinners
Appearing like a scene from a western movie, the latest music video from Tejon Street Corner Thieves pits the band members against versions of other prominent bands within the alt-country genre. Showing off some of their finest dance moves, Tejon Street Corner Thieves pay homage to other noteworthy bands through parody.
Eldren — “Fell In”
Listen if you like Khruangbin
Filmed both in Denver and Japan, Eldren’s latest music video is as laid back and carefree as can be. Bringing viewers up close and personal with the music, it follows the band as they groove across the globe.
Nathaniel Rateliff — “Time Stands”
Listen if you like John Prine
Taking viewers through empty streets, Nathaniel Rateliff’s latest music video is the perfect excuse to find a calm moment to pause and reflect. The slow acoustic melody carries Rateliff’s voice across the serene landscapes featured in the video.
Oxeye Daisy — “Wanting”
Listen if you like FKJ
First premiered on the streets of downtown Denver, Oxeye Daisy’s latest music video is an experience that combines music with visual art. The single, which comes from the band’s upcoming project, is a sexual song focused on femininity — a concept perfectly accompanied by the music video.