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Kicking breast cancer

Independent local martial arts studio hosts Kickathon fundraiser By Steve Graham Andrew Beck spends most of the year teaching tae kwon do punches, kicks and blocks. But this month, he is focused on a different kind of sparring — the fight against breast cancer. Beck is the chief instructor at Becks’ Martial Arts, which he launched with his wife Rebecca in 2018. The school will host the fifth annual Kickathon, with […]

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It’s all in the mix

SF1 deftly blends genres, art forms By Steve Graham Shane Franklin is a radio personality for both a Top 40 pop station and a hard rock station. If that seems incongruous, you haven’t seen Franklin’s other project, SF1. “I like to just call it music,” Franklin said of the eclectic blend of rap, soul, jazz and rock he brings to his albums as SF1. His live shows are even more […]

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CD Review

  “Rattlesnake” Neyla Pekarek Neyla Pekarek left the Lumineers last year to pursue a solo career. She clearly had something else to say, and some other musical avenues to explore. And even though she is internationally famous, all those roads charmingly lead back to northern Colorado. The Lumineers’ rollicking, foot-stomping hit “Ho Hey” ruled radio in 2012, and firmly established them as “America’s answer to Mumford & Sons,” as Rolling Stone […]

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CD Review

      Flaural By Steve Graham It took three years to make, and it’s only eight tracks long, but Flaural packs a lot into its 32-minute-long full-length debut album. “I think it’s important for people to listen to the songs more than once,” singer Colin Johnson told Westword back in April. “You’ll discover all the little things we hid in there.” The album is called “Postponement” because the recording was delayed […]

Dressy Bessy
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CD Review

Dressy Bessy By Steve Graham Dressy Bessy is back, and I couldn’t be happier — at least when the band is up to its old tricks. “Fast Faster Disaster” is the Colorado group’s first album in three years, and only the second since the band’s initial run of four nearly perfect albums between 1999 and 2005. When the band is back in its driving pop groove, the new album is […]

Photo credit: Shae Marx. (Photo 1 and 2, from left: Christi, Jess, Mike, Alia)
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Shredding the no-coast surf

By Steve Graham The Music District and the Downtown Artery do plenty of amazing things for northern Colorado arts. Even off the clock, employees of both organizations are making the region even better. Case in point: Four self-proclaimed “summer babies” who channel their yearning for the coast into some of the best reverb-drenched surf-pop this side of La Luz (the band, not the cantina). And they perform under the best […]

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CD Review

Listen while you read — “Casa de Papel” on SoundCloud “Casa de Papel”   Izcalli By Steve Graham Izcalli is proof that immigrants benefit our country and culture. Singer-guitarist Miguel Avina and his sister, bassist Brenda Avina, have been enriching the Colorado music scene with the sounds, language and passion of their native Mexico for 14 years (the group is named for both their hometown and the Nahuatl word for […]

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EP review

EP review “They Say You’re a Demon” Oxeye Daisy Men of a certain age probably best remember the song “Wicked Game” for its award-winning and titillating video, featuring Chris Isaak rolling around on a beach with supermodel Helena Christensen. But try to get that image out of your head (it might not be easy) and recall that it was actually a really good song. Colorado’s Oxeye Daisy is here to […]

Pamela Machala
Music News

Songs on the keys of life

Pamela Machala By Steve Graham When Pamela Machala moved to Colorado in 2015, she wasn’t sure where she would fit into a guitar-heavy local music scene as a classically trained jazz pianist. After all, it’s harder to carry a piano to the campground or even a brewpub. But Machala doesn’t mind lugging her keyboard to regular gigs at breweries, festivals, and cafes around the Front Range. “It’s my one weight […]

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CD Review: Day 1 Johnny Burroughs

    “Day 1” Johnny Burroughs Concerts by the Burroughs have always felt a little like a raucous tent revival, but one of those secular rock ‘n’ roll Springsteen-style tent revivals. Singer Johnny Burroughs always channels his preacher father and his own ministry background in stirring up and lifting up the crowd. But he hasn’t mixed his sweaty soul music with explicitly Christian themes — until now. Johnny’s first solo album […]