This great little coffee and sandwich shop was such a Denver charm. Unfortunately it is currently no longer. Hopefully it will come back. It was a fabulous alternative to the mainstream coffee shops with great chai, great ambiance, hookahs, performances, readings, belly dancing, and a Middle Eastern vibe. Great hangout and get togethers. Good WiFi. Rating: 5 star out of 5.
http://www.denverartmuseum.org/ * 720-865-5000 * Denver Art Museum * 100 W 14th Ave Pkwy * Denver, CO 80204
A day of art all around for me as me and friends wandered into the Denver Art Museum on their ‘free day’ which is the first Saturday of the month. Being my first visit to Denver’s impressive Art Museum, I enjoyed my visit and will definitely be back. Hosted in Denver’s Civic Center, this Art Museum is reknown for its collections that expanse well over 68,000 works of art and has quite a notable collection of American Indian Art. Originally founded in 1893 at the Denver Artist’s Club, it took on the name of the “Denver Art Association” in 1916 and moved into its first galleries in 1918 where it became known as its current namesake. Taking over the current building in 1971 that was designed by Gio Ponti and local architect James Sudler as a 24-sided, 7 story architectural art piece in of itself. In 2006, the Duncan Pavillion grew to a 5,700 square feet second story additon to the original Morgan Wing clad in titanium and glass. The museum hosts nine curatorial departments: (1) Modern and Contemporary, (2) Native Arts, (3) Architecture, Design and Graphics, (4) Asian Art, (5) New World Art, (6) Painting and Sculpture, (7) Photography, (8)Western Art, and (9) Textile Arts. The Museum has and does display the arts of India, China, Japan, Southwest Asia, Tibet, Nepal, Southeast Asia, religious art, traditional folk crafts, modern and contemporary collections of 20th-century artists including the Herbert Bayer collection, Man Ray, Andy Warhol, David Hockney, Robert Motherwell, Damien Hirst, Philip Guston, Dan Flavin, John DeAndrea, Gottfried Helnwein, Yue Minjun, Native American arts (spanning several hundred tribes) with Northwest Coastal woodcarvings, Naskapi painted leather garments, Winnebago twined weaving, Plains Indian beadwork, Navajo weaving, Pueblo pottery, California basketry; Oceanic arts spanning all the major islands with wood carvings, painted bark cloth from Somoa, Tonga, and Hawaii; Melanesian collections from Papua New Guinea & New Ireland; drawings, paintings; African Arts with sculptures, textiles, jewelry, paintings, printmaking, drawings, Yoruba works; New World Arts; Latin American arts including ceramics, stone, gold, jade, furnishings, silver from Spanish Colonial periods; Pre-Columbian arts from Mesoamerica, lower Central America, and South America; Mayan art from Mexico, guatemala, and Belize; European and American paintings and photographic works; Coptic and pre-Columbia textiles; Western American Art; the Harmsen Collection; and many more …. The Museum cannot be completely covered in a day – so make your visit to span the weekend. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
Ah the relaxation of a Starbucks, and this one in the heart of the 16th Street Mall, crowded with tourists on a rainy Colorado afternoon. Limited seating, one bathroom (with a code 74147) down a hall, and friendly staff (as usual). Good window viewing of the Mall. Decent wifi as usually can be expected from Starbucks. The few seats and tables there are, is decent seating. Definitely a drop off point. Parking is limited as its a crowded touristy downtown hub with 2 hour max meters. But hey, it’s around the corner from the Money Museum which is a free one-room display of currency history of the region. Free bag of shredded money as a souvenir. Got some peaceful work done to my drug-of-choice the Chai Creme Frappacino. ~ Leaf McGowan. Visited 8/7/17 : 3 stars out of 5.
The Magic Fest http://www.themagicfest.com/ Friday August 18th – Saturday August 19, 2017 1st Annual, EB Rains Jr Memorial Park / DL Parsons Theater, 11800 Community Center Drive, Northglenn, Colorado
The premiere consortium of magicians, illusionists, and entertainers with a galleria of magical goods, tricks, entertainers, and services. Hosted in the heart of Northglenn, this year’s fest was its first over Friday August 18th and Saturday the 19th. It all began with Intrigue (http://themagicfest.com/intrigue/) friday night in the 1920’s / 1930’s era theme for adults with an evening of speakeasy and partying accompanied by magic, drinks, jazz, and vendors. Our booth the Tree Leaves’ Oracle featured the 1920’s wizard Leaf doing sleight of hand, close-up and stage tricks within the booth. The costumes were fantastic around the party and event. Hosting in the green glory of the EB Rains Junior Memorial Park with outdoor entertainment and bars hosted for free. Within the theater were special paid performances of magical delight. The main stage hosted the Jazz Spiders with a mentalism twist of Anthem & Aria, followed by the Bringers of Swing. On the Sleight of Hand stage Shawn Preston and Joe Given performed, and in the bar were Don Zellner, Brandon Parker, Joe Givan, and Shawn Preston doing card tricks. Magicians walked around the festival doing tricks everywhere with Salida Circum, the travelling escape room, and much more. David and Leeman performed in the theater for shows at 7 and the Sideshows, Oddities, and Spirits performance by the Theater of Dreams Carol Massie and Joe Givan.
Saturday was a full day of fun for the family with lots of kid activities, shows, performances, and fun. Vendors, food trucks, bouncy castles, wand making, and fun in the park. Over 25 magicians performed during the event over 5 stages and roaming performers. The entertainment all free to anyone wanting to attend and be amazed. Cliff Davidson and Mark Strivings bedazzled children in the Kid’s tent. Steve and Carissa Walters did kid magic in the activity area sending home the young ones with tricks to start their own performances. Bryan Parker and Cosmo Solano performed closeup magic on stage 2. Professor Phelyx and Anthem / Aria performed mentalism on stage 3. Richard Kewsell and the Sleightly Impossible (Gene Gordon and Matt Brandt) performed parlor and cabaret magic on stage 4. Alec Mueller and Trevor Vernor, teen magicians, walked around the fest performing all around. The Genii Leaf performed at the Tree Leaves Oracle booth out front. Lots of gifts, tricks, books, face painting, food, and services were offered by vendors local and far.
Once again the City of Northglenn provided an amazing free festival for everyone to enjoy with thousands in attendance. It was a grand event indeed. Can’t wait til the next one! And gearing up to their spectacular Pirate festival as well in a few weeks. Rated 5 stars out of 5
The Money Museum is part of the Denver Federal Reserve and is located along the 16th street mall. It is open Monday through Friday and offers free tours during the day. This little one room display enables the visitor to learn about the Federal Reserve and how money works. While there is no admission, you need to be at least 18 years of age and go through a screening. After the tour, they gift you a bag of shredded money. I actually didn’t really enjoy the visit. Glad it was free. They need a better display and presentation. Rating: 2 star out of 5 (Visited 8/5/17)
The iconic “Main Street” that most think of when thinking of the center of Denver. This foot traffic and shuttle bus strip dotted by upscale stores, chain restaurants, and entertainment avenues is one of the hotspots for tourism to Denver. It is a central drop off location for those staying downtown. It offers a lot of activities for its patrons and visitors. It is a central location for entertainment, festivals, fairs, shows, events, flash mobs, street performances, and zombie crawls. It boasts a free transit mall ride or shuttle bus called the Free MallRide. I’ve had many memories of this place from the Denver Freeze to the Denver Zombie Crawls, to late night and daytime activities. During the summer, the center strip was dotted with free pianos to play, lounge chairs, games, chess, bean bags, rolling chairs, and local performances. ~ Leaf McGowan. Visited 8/5/17 – 5 stars out of 5
The tree-lined pedestrian and transit mall runs approximately 125 miles across downtown Denver from Wewatta Street at the historic Union Square to the Civic Center Station at 16th and Broadway. There are over 300 stores dotted along the corridor ranging from chains to locally owned shops. As costs become over the top, more chains have replaced local businesses through time. There are over 50 restaurants and the Denver Pavillions Mall. The Mall opened in 1982 as a pedestrian strip running from Market Street to Broadway but has since expanded to Wynkoop Street in 2001 and to Union Station in 2002. It was designed by Pei Cobb Freed and Partners.
Directory of Services: Please visit web site linked above. As we review various places and events, they will be linked here in the near future.
I experienced my first visit to the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art on its infamous “penny admission day for Colorado residents” on August 5, 2017. The architectural style of the museum portrays contemporary art in its own style and facade, with a hidden entrance down what appears to be a dead-end graffiti styled corridor out front. The rooftop has a great garden with modern-style and wonderful views of the city. The bubble chill zone on fake grass pads is also a nice touch. Its a great space for exhibiting art. While this particular selection of exhibits was not very fascinating the museum itself had lots of great pleasure. I also was very impressed with the Jenny Morgan exhibit and how it was presented. The other two, not so much. As I’m not a great fan of contemporary art, I did enjoy my visit. ~ Leaf McGowan Rating: 4 star out of 5
The MCA or DCMA was founded in 1996 as a home for contemporary art in the city. For its first seven years, it took over an old renovated fish market in the Sakura Square downtown Denver, being founded by Sue Cannon. By 2003 the Board of Trustees donated land to build a permanent building. October 2007 they opened their current, new 27,000 square foot environmentally sustainable building in lower downtown Denver created by architect David Adjaye. It was styled with hidden skylights and natural lighting with large windows looking out to Denver’s streets. The building possessed five galleries as well as a shop, library, education spaces, and a rooftop cafe.
Mario’s Two Fisted Pizza Parlour 1626 Market St, Denver, CO 80202
One of my favorite Pizza joints in Denver, Colorado. Mario’s Two Fisted Pizza is conveniently located next door to the infamous Double Daughters Salotto that is by far one of my favorite bars. Back in 2005-2012 when I lived in Colorado … Double Daughters and Mario’s were amongst some of my usual haunts. I unfortunately haven’t had the chance to visit again since 2012 (partially because my life doesn’t support eating out anymore). But from memories … Some of the most superb pizza around. As they are open to 2 or 3 am most nights, great place to grab a slice after clubbing or bar brewing. Rated: 5 stars out of 5
This year, for Halloween fun, we joined together with some close friends and high tailed it to the Rock Creek Farm for their miles of corn mazes to explore. It was my son’s first experience tromping around such custom-styled, aerial view famed mazes such as these. Rock Creek has hundreds of acres of pumpkin patches and corn fields ready to explore and enjoy for the Fall holidays. The U-Pick-Em pumpking fields are great places to get your festivity decor and pumpkins. They have a petting farm with pigs, ponies, goats, donkeys, chickens, and other farm animals. They have bouncy houses and inflatable slides, rolling balls, and other games to partake in. Many activities are free, others were a bit pricey. They did put a lot of work into creating these fields. We had a great time. Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Trick or Treating Celebration ~ Parker, Colorado ~
Each year, downtown Parker Colorado puts on a street block event along mainstreet closing off the streets for vendors and local businesses to hand out trick-or-treating treats and candies from their booths to the local kids and attendees of the fest. They have a mini-corn maze, performers, actors, music, and information/goods from the businesses in the area. Its a free event with a great attendance. My son came home with a bucket load of treats. Good times and a nice scenic downtown sector. This year (2016) was held on Halloween itself (10/31/16). Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Not a fan of Zoos, but when discussing great zoos that are in existence, Denver Zoo is pretty spectacular. I’ve been here a few times, the most recent was the free zoo day in October 2016. The Denver Zoo is located in a City Park, near downtown Denver, and is owned by the City and County of Denver. It is just behind the Museum of Natural History and Science. It consists of 80 acres of well maintained grounds housing an assortment of animals from around the world. It was founded in 1896 with the donation of an orphaned American Black Bear. To house the orphan, it became the first zoo in the United States to use naturalistic zoo enclosures rather than cages and bars. The zoo is accredited by the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums and a member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, with ISO 14001 certification granted in 2009 and named the Greenest Zoo in the Country in 2012.
– Denver Museum of Natural History and Science – Denver, Colorado
One of Denver’s star attractions, the Museum of Nature and Science is a hallmark of the area, and an informal science education center for the Rocky Mountains. It hosts a variety of exhibits, programs, and activities for visitors to embark and learn from about the history of the Earth, the world, and most specifically Colorado. The building is roughly 716,000 square feet housing more than a million objects in its collections covering anthropology, archaeology, paleontology, geology, art, and the universe. It is also a repository for an incredible archives and library. The museum is independent and a non-profit with over 350 full time and part time staff, over 1800 volunteers, and a board of trustees with 25 member. It is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums and is a affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. There are six main areas in the museum – (1) The Exhibitions, (2) IMAX films, (3) lectures, (4) classes, and (5) programs based around anthropology, geology, health science, paleontology, space science, and zoology. They receive well over 300,000 students and teachers every year just in school groups alone.
The museum spread from the Edwin Carter Log Cabin Naturalist Museum in 1875 that was the private fauna collection of Colorado species gathered together by Edwin Carter from Breckenridge Colorado. In 1892 a group of Denver citizens declared interest in his collection to be moved to the capital for all to enjoy, and Carter sold it to them for $10,000. They added another collection of butterflies and moths as well a some crystallized gold. This combined collection became the Colorado Museum of Natural History and was incorporated in 1900. The Museum finally opened in 1908. By 1918 it opened another wing. In 1927 one of its teams discovered two stone projectile points embedded in extinct species of Bison in Folsom, New Mexico putting the museum in the spotlight.
There are several permanent areas of the museum, these are:
Discovery Zone – a hands on educational center for kids allowing them to build, learn about water, make crafts, and excavate dinosaur bones.
Egyptian Mummies – an exhibit with two mummies and their associated artifacts, depicting life in Ancient Egypt and an introduction to their belief systems.
Expedition Health – teaches museum patrons about the human body and the science of taste.
Gems and Minerals – welcomes visitors into a cavern of gems and minerals, both local and globally.
Native American Indian Cultures – an exhibit exploring the original inhabitants of North America.
Prehistoric Journey – a journey into paleontology with fossil collections and skeletons of great magnitude.
Space Odyssey – a collection and exhibit about space, exploration, and the universe.
Wildlife Exhibits – animal dioranams showing scenes of life of various animals on the planet, focused on Colorado as well as globally.
The museum also houses a large 50,000 plus object collection of anthropological, archaeological, and ethnological artifacts from North America. They also house over 800 items from an ethnological art collection, archival photographs, and documents. The Earth Sciences Collection contains six main groups of fauna, flora, and mineral components such as vertebrate paleontology, paleobotany, invertebrate paleontology, minerals, meteorites, and micromount. The Health Sciences Collection has rare an unique human anatomy specimens as well as pieces of medical importance. The Space Sciences Lab houses the museums Scientific Instruments Collection.
the Department of Space Sciences maintains a large digital collection of images and multimedia assets for space. The Zoology Collection houses over 900,000 specimens of species and creatures from around the globe. The
Bailey Library and Archives focuses on anthropology, archaeology, earth sciences, health sciences, space sciences, zoology, the Rocky Mountain West, and museum studies with over 53,000 publications, 2,500 rare books, and 9,000 volumes of scientific periodicals. Various temporary exhibits come in for a wide variation of subjects and collections. The Phipps IMAX Theater was built in 1940 originally used for concerts, films, and lectures. Then it was re-opened in 1983 as an IMAX Theater primarily.
The museum actually has various secrets as there are hidden paintings located throughout the museum such as Kent Pendleton, one of the diorama painters, placed eight elves hidden in his art for visitors to find, as well as some Star Wars related pictures by the IMAX lobby. Rated 5 stars out of 5
Please join us for one last look of these amazing artists work.
* Trace Gallery * 3700 Franklin * Denver, CO 80205 *
This is Ian Welling‘s first show in Denver since he returned from San Francisco. Ian Welling is a surrealist artist who draws and creates strictly from the imagination. Largely inspired by altered states of consciousness and the realms of the unreal, he attempts to capture the supernatural elements of the human imagination. While his older works draw from the psychedelic experience, his new work features strong apocalyptic thematic elements.
Ian has shown at galleries in Denver, Chicago, Miami and California.
Influenced by the early surrealists and Dadaists, as well as modern visionary masters and the writings of William S. Burroughs and William Blake, Ian is committed to continue churning out artwork that borders on the absolutely bizarre and esoteric.
Paddy’s art intersects a number of disciplines: pen and ink; the still-life; sumi-e; and screen printing, process (or cmyk) printing and the print industry (in which he has worked and been greatly influenced). The candy-colored, tattoo-outlined still-lifes emerging from this dynamic are curious arrangements of things you recognize and… other things too, presented against austere, unprinted backgrounds to emphasize their icongraphy and abstraction. His work is an exploration of this style.
Born in 1978 and raised as a musician in a Chicago suburb, Paddy earned a BA in philosophy from Loyola University, Chicago before eventually moving to Vermont (2008) where he began making art. He is self-taught.
Trace Gallery is a multimedia art space located at the intersection of post-industrial and urban paradigms in Denver. Trace is curated by Saige of Pathways Art, a long-running group show that showcases a variety of artists who share a passion for finding new ways of understanding and expressing our collective vision. Trace continues this tradition, with more focus on individual artists. In addition to monthly gallery openings, Trace hosts workshops, classes, music, and community events.
A nice little hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Edgewater that serves some decent thai food. We had a variety of dishes, and while a big fan of peanut sauce can’t say they have the best, but I was pleased with the dishes I tried. Ok prices and pretty decent service. I’ll try this again before solidifying my review, but the experience was good. Rating 3 stars out of 5.
While living in Colorado Springs, Denver became a home for me on most weekends for nightlife, gatherings of family/friends, and explorations for my six years of living in Colorado from 2005-2011. Denver is the largest city in Colorado, and is its capital with over 620,000 residents. Mixed with the Front Range Urban Corridor, stretching over 18 counties in two states possessing a population of over 4,423,936.
Today it is called the “Mile-High City” because it is exactly one mile above sea level (5280 feet). Located in the South Platte River Valley along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains nestled on the western edge of the High Plains it sits at the confluence of Cherry Creek and the South Platte River. Denver was founded in November of 1858 as a mining town during the infamous “Pikes Peak Gold Rush”. With the Gold Rush heavy in the western Kansas territory, some prospectors were exploring off for new territory to lay claim to and established “Montana City” on the banks of the South Platte River which steadily grew to “Denver” as it sits today.
Denver went through its ups and downs. General William Larimer placed cottonwood logs on a bluff overlooking the confluence of Cherry Creek and the South Platte River laying claim across the creek from the mining settlement of Auraria. He named this town “Denver City” after the Kansas Territorial Governor James W. Denver to gain favor with him and give him the county seat. The ploy did not work as Governor Denver had already resigned by this point. Denver City grew with popularity however, including infestation with gambling casinos, saloons, prostitution, livestock and provision trading.
1800’s In 1859, development for the Leavenworth & Pike’s Peak Express brought the region’s first overland wagon route increasing its viability as a center for trade and commerce. When the Colorado territory was established in 1861, Arapahoe County was formed the same year, incorporating Denver City as the County Seat from 1861-1902. By 1867 it became the Territorial Capital and its name was shortened to “Denver”. By 1876 Colorado was admitted to the Union. 1870 saw Denver becoming linked to Denver Pacific as part of the transcontinental railroad promising prosperity to the region. The city was built up from the riches of the Gold Strikes. Luxurious overstays were erected included the infamous Brown Palace Hotel, Campbell Mansion, Moffat Mansion, and other landmarks. Upper and middle class residences became abundant as did immigrant populations of Chinese, Italian, and German laborers, African-American slaves, and Spanish workers. In 1893 after the Silver Crash/depression – a collapse of the economy led to major ethnic bigotry such as the rise of the Klu Klux Klan, the Red Scare, and organized crime. From 1880-1895 Severe corruption infiltrated the region.
1900’s By 1901 Arapahoe County was split into the City/County of “Denver”, Adams County, and South Arapahoe County by the Colorado General Assembly delaying creation of the city and county until 1902. The Democratic National Convention was hosted in 1908 and again in 2008 attempting to promote the city’s status on national, socioeconomic, and political circles. It became home to the Brass Era Car company known as the Colburn Automobile company who copied the Renault style, and from 1953-1989 the Department of Energy nuclear weapon facility 15 miles outside of the city began producing fissile plutonium pits for nuclear warheads at its Rocky Flats plant. A major 1957 fire and nuclear waste leakage from 1958-1968 contaminated some parts of Denver with plutonium 239 causing birth defects and rashes of cancer in central Denver and Rocky Flats. Evidence for contamination existed upwards to 2010.
Denver became the Queen City of the Plains as well as the West for its role as a leader in the agricultural industry of the high-plains. A semi-arid continental climate zone, it has four seasons with a modest amount of precipitation annually and is known for its sudden changes in weather. Usually sunny, with over 300 days of sunshine a year with highs of 90 degrees fahrenheit and average lows of 60 degrees fahrenheit during the summer, and highs of 44 degrees fahrenheit and lowers of 18 degrees fahrenheit during the winter.
I had the pleasure to meet some of the great folks of “The Sunken Bones Society” at their large annual gathering “The Buccaneer Bash” and their new convention called “Brethrencon“. Good times, good people, good purpose. The Society is working on 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization status as the are dedicated to raising awareness and contributions for maritime conservation projects and causes from the Great Age of Sail. The Society was founded by Captain’s Drake and Steehl in 2007. They were forefront to bringing the “Talk Like A Pirate Day” activities to Denver, Colorado by means of their Buccaneer Bash which has evolved into Brethrencon. Their first project is raising awareness and funding for the recently burnt historic ship: The Cutty Sark. They have an intriguing team of talent, including the actor talents of Captain Jack McCool. I’m impressed with this organization and see a future of great events and activities that they’ll be bringing to the Front Range. Kudos! Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
A first ever Pirate Conference in the Rocky Mountains’ Metropolis “Denver, Colorado”. Hosted at the Airport Marriott in the suburb of Aurora, pirates and scallywag’ns gathered together for debauchery, mischief, merrymaking, networking, and frolick on Saturday, 18th of September, 2010. $25 pre-sale, and $30 at the door gave the guests a myriad array of vendors, merchants, workshops, and panels to select from such as “Dragon Lair’s Armory”, “Southwest Enterprises”, “Marty Melville the Author”, “Katie and Ally”, the Masseur Miguel Alchandro, Charicture by Rigel, “Most Things Fantasy”, “Odd Child Underground”, “Cabachon and Peranic Kitty”, our own “Technogypsie.com/Tree Leaves Oracle/Pirate Relief, Ghost Cat Designs, and R.J. Whetstone Images. Workshops varied from Jasper’s Foul Tongue, Medicine and Health During the Golden Age of Piracy, Midnight Omen Deja Vu, Period Pirate Games, Pirate Insult Fight, Pirate Myths, Pirate Relief, Salamagundi Grog and Other Piratical Vituals Yearrghh!, Talk Like a Pirate, Voodoo 101, 17th Century Clothing for Lady Pirates, A Clean Pirate is a Sissy Pirate, A Crew Full of Jacks, A Shanty Sing, and Zombie Self Defense. Pirates vs. Zombies attack battle and dancing / drinking to the merriment of Pandora Celtica, DJ BilgeMunkey, Mondragon, and The Widow’s Bane. Hosted by the infamous Sunken Bones Society for their celebration of international “Talk Like A Pirate Day” and as an evolution of their 4th annual Buccaneer Bash. Games, contests, Liar’s Dice Tournaments, never ending Pirate flicks upstairs, a snack room, chill space, and many exciting panels were had. Rum Runners, Breakfast Buffet, The Tavern, and a Dinner were served and setup. Donation proceeds were sent to the New Orlean’s Foundations’ “Gulf Coast Oil Spill Cleanup” to assist in cleaning up and restoring the sea coastal environments affected by this year’s tragedy. After Hours hotel room parties kept the activities rocking throughout the night. For a “first” time convention for this crew, it was well done, especially for a “con” or “convention”. Fun was had by all. Get amped up for next year’s bigger and badder convention “Brethren Con II: September 17-18, 2011“.
Marrakech Cafe * 2286 South Colorado Boulevard, Denver, CO 80222 * (303) 759-3611 *
A large fancy Lebanese and Middle Eastern restaurant just south of downtown Denver. The food is delicious and good service. I had the Lamb curry and it was quite nice. Hummus was tasty as was the salad. The waittress was friendly and on top of things. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
An AMAZING Marching Band by the name of “Itchy-O” graced our presence and spiced up the already fantastic party to enlightened levels at Odd Todd’s Junk Yard “Smash Club” this particular Saturday. A major compilation of ambient, experimental, and ghettotech music with full ski-mask covered dark musicians beating and banging on their drums sending shivers through the veins of all onlookers. Based out of Denver, this act (wherever it mysteriously appears) is never to be missed. They are in the works of producing a record with the Record Label Mettle. Itchy-O got it start as a solo project in 2003 when Scott Banning, a experimental percussionist and filmmaker brought together his art piece while living in Denver. Mixed together with Phagocytosis, Conrad Kehn (vocalist, improvisationalist, and composer from Skull Flux / Kallisti) in 2005 and then with guitarist Nick Lloyd and flemenco guru Rene Heredia in 2006. They composed the film “Whirl” in 2007 and was joined by Kirsten Vermulen with her accordian. They began to play live scores to Scott’s experimental films in 2008 and was joined that year by Bill Englebach and Scot Waknin. They describe themselves now as “Hyper-Intentus~ Electro-Acoustic~ Artifex Voluptus~ Celebratio Professio~ Compello-Fratorum” musical and artistic theatrics experience as one of the world’s only percussion-centered electronic marching bands priding itself on bringing sophicated savage avante-garde music to the people, when and where it is least expected. I for one have to concur, they manifest that destiny to the highest impressive degree. The current composition of artists are: Drew Vinciguera~ Snare; JD Hortel~ Quad Tenors; Jesse Dickens~ Quint Tenors; Rachel Hargroder~ Quad/Quint Tenors; Dustin Ardnt~ Quint Tenors; Scott Banning~ Roto-Toms; Luke Wachter~ Timbales; Steve Gordon~ Bass Drum; Paul Alexander~ Bass Drum; Dean Hirschfield~ Marching Crash Cymbals; Stephanie Wood~ Marching Crash Cymbals; Pamela Webb~ Marching Crash Cymbals; Justin Simoni~ Marching Crash Cymbals; Kirsten Vermulen~ Synthesizer/Vocoder; David Britton~ Synthesizer/Vocoder; Coby Hickman~ Synthesizer; Bert Beudin~ Electric Bass; Ed Smith~ Electric Bass; Roger Liu~ Electric Guitar; John Gross~ Vocoder; Conrad Kehn~ Vocoder; Joe Mehner~ Dr. Bucket; Aaron Spriggs~ Theremin; Josh Strange Powers~ Vocoder; Joanne M.W. Liu~ Larry the Chinese Lion; Megs Burd~ Larry the Chinese Lion; Ryan Archuleta~ Special Unit I; Todd Yore~ Special Unit II; Jill Mustoffa~ Special Unit III; Mable Mabe~ Special Unit IV; Alicia Bailey~ Special Unit V; Nick Lloyd~ Special Rolling Unit; Sara Valentine~ Miss. O; and Justin Hicks~ MSP (Most Special Player); (and often many more). Once again, have to stress, NEVER to miss this sensational crew. Rating: 5+ stars out of 5.
Fourth Zombie Outbreak in Denver uWorld News Press: October 24, 2009: 2300 – Denver, Colorado
It happened again. For the fourth year in a row. Growing in masses. From Hundreds to literally thousands. Its no longer a crawl, but an invasion … disorder, chaos, anarchy. Zombies populating the 16th street mall. Infectuous virus signs everywhere. It appeared to me to have about 2,000 zombies crawling the mall this year, though the pack leader claims about 4,000 trying to give the Freemont Seattle Guiness Book of World Records a challenge. Could it be? This year, Colorado has been over-run with the cantagion of this zombie feH1N1z virus. Perhaps the quarantine and immunization clinic in Colorado Springs did not work? Could zombies have escaped the Littleton, Manitou Springs, and Colorado Spring outbreaks this year? Can the virus really populate that quickly? It was sheer madness. There was a rally at Skyline Park with events until the zombies took over. They got bored with the activities at Skyline Park, so the zCDC squad was unable to contain or quarantine them in that sector of the city. They crawled in disorder randomly up both sides of the 16th street mall, attacking innocent citizens and devouring their brains. Some musical zombies broke out into thriller-like dancecapades throughout. Blood splattered the streets, the walls, the windows of the establishments. The buses were smeared by marks of the undead. In fact, so bad, that the city billed the zombies $1,000 fine for clean up. Is this the end? Has the zombie apocalypse reached us?
Fourth Annual Denver Zombie Crawl * www.eyeheartbrain.com * Every October * 16th Street Mall * Denver, Colorado *
It was madness and it took its toll. Thousands of zombies descended on the 16th Street Mall this Saturday, October 24, 2009. There was an estimated 2,000-4,000 zombies participating in the zombie crawl. Though with that many people, it lost its ‘crawl’ effect, and was more of a chaotic ‘invasion’ of the mall as zombies went every which way, rather than the usual mass going in one direction. Tons of victims attacked, phenomenal dance performances in Michael Jackson Thriller style sporadically took place throughout the crawl, the buses attacked with bloody handprints, and general blood bath. It was a blast chaos or not. The event started at Skyline Park with makeup 101, costume contests, and other promotional events, dances, and festivity. Then at 6 pm, they crawled up and down the 16th street mall, some of which met back at Skyline Park for a local goth band playing live. There were advertised zombie bowling, zombie balls, zombie proms, and zombie parties afterwards. It was a fun-filled time. The costumes were amazing. The event takes place every October. Details can be found at www.eyeheartbrain.com.
Next door to Cervantes Master Theater lies their small bar/lounge/dive that is a nice comfortable space with a small stage and dance floor. Down in the depths below are concert recordings and hard to find collectibles to add to your nostalgia needs. Bar prices are reasonable and the DJ between the acts was excellent. Sponsors for the event had quite a fun setup. However, it was a monday afterall, and we all know what that means when mixed with work schedules, it was poorly attended. A larger audience might have feeded the spirit and the adrenaline for the event, and perhaps would of fed the energy level of the opening acts, but unfortunately all of the acts live didn’t meet up to the music they weave on their websites. In addition, since the music style and hardness are not my ideal likings, I’m not going to give the bands each the typical 1-5 rating guage as I believe I might be biased. The entire event and all performances statistically equate to 2 stars out of 5. Babyland as expected was the highlight of the evening, and they were definitely good, but beyond their presence and unique instrumentation; merged with the spirit of the good DJ, and good friends in the audience, my captivity of attention would not have lasted as long as it did. I’ll leave it at that.
Babyland – www.myspace.com/babylandmusic * 6/29/09 show at Quixotes True Blue in Denver, Colorado * From the heart of the city of Lost Angels comes a electronic junk punk band to bring the spirit of L.A. to the heart of Denver. This compadre of spirits melds together electronic music with hardcore and junk noise demonstrating extreme emotions that one would expect out of Los Angeles reflecting humankind’s continual evolution and search for meaning within the human existence (as outlined on their site). Babyland relies heavily on experimentation and machinery from mechanical noise to primitive rhythmns. They were the heart to this particular evening, beating life to the event.
Elete – www.myspace.com/denverelete * 6/29/09 show at Quixotes True Blue in Denver, Colorado * A local Denver band concieved and created by the ex-Lexen metal frontman and industrial hip hop artist ‘Roman Only’. Roman joined with Mike Oxbig, Will Oxbig, and Will Mendoza on guitars, WMD on bass, and Che-Cho on drums brings this band together. They have a hard rock/metal flavor bursting their synthesizer and guitars mashing crunch, glitch, metal, and industrial. Not my style of music, but those in the audience appeared to enjoy it.
Plasmacrash – www.myspace.com/plasmacrash * 6/29/09 show at Quixotes True Blue in Denver, Colorado * Another local Colorado metal band, this time down from Fort Collins they bill themselves as music for the post Apocalypse. Labelled as Metal and Industrial they live to that title. The band came to be at the end of the 2005 Colorado Dark Arts Festival by college radio DJ’s Asbestos (Big Tim) and Rivet until joined in 2007 by Thick Noose guitarist Chaotic Weevil; and joined in 2008 by ALH members Joey Gunn and Nic Bastrd. Again while I’m a fan on industrial, I’m not on the harder metal scene, so they weren’t exactly my thing – I didn’t enjoy the performance, but find their music on their website much more attractive.
photo by Kathy McNutt Face handpainted by Leaf McGowan Arms handpainted by Kathy McNutt
Bodypainting Jam @ the Blue Sky Collective * 9635 W. Colfax, Lakewood (Denver), Colorado * blueskycollective.org * 303-238-0959 Once a month usually on the 4th sunday at the Blue Sky Collective in Denver, local bodypainting artists gather to share their talent and art with those who attend … Held in the Blue Sky Collective which resides in a beautiful historic building along West Colfax where people attend live music, poetry readings, RPG games, shop at a used bookstore, record/vinyl store, visit the artist co-op, get a dose of healing from the healers, dance in the dance studios, indulge in the candy and tea shoppe, or for a precise pinning within the acupuncture clinic. Always bustling with concerts, author readings, concerts, jams, poetry, tournaments, exhibits, life drawing circles, and classes you will always amaze yourself at this locale. Now while I have yet to explore these absolute treasures, I have attended and participated in the Body Paint Jam as a painter. It’s a wonderful concept to get artists to network with one another and share the art as well as to create masterpieces. Everyone should drop on by! Amazing art walks through these doors!
Lipgloss Eight Year Anniversary w/ Guest DJ Thieves Like Us * La Rumba * 99 W. 9th Ave * Denver, Colorado * NO COVER! * 6/26/2009 *http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=94455353845&ref=mf Eight Magical Years has Tyler and Michael brought us magic and frolick on the floors of La Rumba and Denver downtown. So tonight’s their birthday bash for a proud and stomping 8 years! Presented by Eydea Worx, The Onion, Yelp & Denver3 this was a time to celebrate. Partying from Friday, June 26, 2009 at 9:00pm until Saturday, June 27, 2009 at 2:00am the house was crowded with a familiar and excited crowd deep in the midst of a good reason to party! DJ’s boyhollow and Tyler Jacobson combined with their special guest DJ Andy of Thieves Like Us (Paris/Kitsune Records) merged with big screen visuals by An-Ism the audience and patrons were mesmerized with dancing spirit. As there was no cover for the night, the floors packed in by midnight. The birthday also saw into birth their recession special drinks of $3 vodka wells to the $2 PBR’s and Gin/Tonics. Sweet. My place to party. Thanky you Tyler and Michael for 8 amazing years!!!
Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
Bombay Bowl* 12023 E Arapahoe Rd * Englewood, CO 80112 * (303) 339-5500 * http://bombaybowl.com/ * Dropping into this little restaurant that was style after the Tokyo Joe’s and other unique grills, was a bowl of sensations called “Bombay Bowl”. Fresh Indian food fixed before you, quick Indian food to eat in or to go. At first one would think it be a popular chain, but its just starting out. I tried the Chicken Korma with Garlic Naan, and a Mango Latte. Affordable pricing, excellent food, and friendly staff. I’ll definitely be back, now one of my favorite healty fast food spots next to Tokyo Joe’s. Why doesn’t Colorado Springs get any of these amazing little restaurants? Delicious and Amazing. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.
Lipgloss: Every Friday – 99 W. 9th Ave, Denver, Colorado • 303 -572-8006 • One block west of Broadway • $6 Cover after 10 • 21+ Only • $2 G&Ts • $2 PBRs * www.denver3.com
My all time favorite friday night in Denver is to let loose at the infamous Lipgloss at La Rumba on 9th. This night rewarded a disappointing evening at My Bloody Valentine prior, so the night was not ruined and uplifted to sensational. DJ Cyren was guest dj’ing the “Pet Shop Boys” listening party as the music styles tonight were much more my flavor than usual (though Lipgloss is always my flavor). Cyren’s sets rocked the house. DJ’s Michael Trundle and Tyler Jacobson as usual spun their usual levels of pleasure. It was a fabulous night to say the least. Thank you all for changing the tune to my evening. I’m never disappointed with Lipgloss. The Denver3 team always promises what they preach. If only I “lived” in Denver would I be more of a regular. “Lipgloss” – Denver’s hottest Mod/Soul/Electro/Indie Brit pop night springs to life every friday night: Free cover before 10 pm, and $2 gin wells and PBR’s … The Staff of La Rumba were incredible and affordable strong drinks. The DJ’s were fantastic and addressed inquiries and requests quickly and very friendly – knowing their stuff, I’d recommend them for any event. Thank you! Rating: 5 stars out of 5. Lipgloss Official Pics from the Event start here …. A few previous Lipgloss Reviews: [ “Lipgloss” @ Club La Rumba: Late of the Pier Listening Party 2/6/09 ] [ Lipgloss 7/18/08 ] [ Lipgloss 12/15/06 ] [ Lipgloss 8/1/08 ]
I couldn’t agree more with my friend Alyx’s review of this show with the opening of “My Bloody Ears” which certainly wraps up the concert in a nutshell. I think I’ll continue admiring this band from afar and their CD’s, never again for a live concert. Don’t get me wrong, I love this band like there is no tomorrow, but the stacks upon stacks of speakers and woofers broadcasting blaring solid noise that decays your innards for over 30 minutes my friends is not music, it’s pollution, and detrimental to life. Not my thing. I wound up leaving early in the middle of their 30 minute noise-blast as I couldn’t take it any longer. Even with the ear plugs (Thank you Noah for insisting I wear them).
So after 16 years of absence, My Bloody Valentine reunited in 2008 that led them on a world tour with shows in Europe, Japan, and the U.S.A. They hit Coachella this year in Indio California, the All Tomorrow’s Parties festival in New York, and this show at the Filmore in Denver. Tickets went for $40 each, but were being scalped for $5 in front of the theater the night of the show. Hundreds of free tickets were given out free last minute thereby cheating those who paid for them. My Bloody Valentine is originally from Dublin, Ireland and phenomenally known as one of the world’s best shoegazer bands serving the shoegazing, post-punk, noise pop, dream pop, and experimental musical realms. Formed by Kevin Shields and drummer Colm Ó Cíosóig, combined with Bilinda Butcher and bassist Debbie Googe; in Dublin in 1984 they predominantly played in London. They were active from 1984 until 1997, seeing a hiatus, and coming back together in 2007 until the present. As their popularity grew through the years, they experimented with distortion, pitch bending, and digital reverb creating the sound known as “shoegazing”. Their 1991 album “Loveless” found funding difficulties in its creation for two years, but once it was released they became critically acclaimed. They’ve been signed with the labels of Tycoon, Lazy, Creation Records, Sony, and Sire. Shortly after Loveless they disappeared until 2007 when they announced their reunion and new music.
For this performance, the Filmore was decently packed, but plenty of room to wander about. The noise level whas phenomenally a nightmare however. I give the band itself on its CD’s a 4 rating, but this performance simply a 1 star out of 5 equating to horrible. Turn down the damn noise!