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    Sometimes hard rock is in vogue, sometimes it's not--but thus far, neither the music industry nor the fickle public has been able to kill it entirely. Even during periods when it was deemed thoroughly uncool, the approach has survived and occasionall...

    by Michael Roberts on June 18, 1998
  • Article

    The Closer He Gets - Singer-songwriter Hayden brings his music out of the basement.

    Every minute of every day, an introspective bedroom strummer somewhere on earth takes a break from penning maudlin tunes about his ex-girlfriend long enough to fantasize about his own vindication writ large. But only a few of the crooners who envisio...

    by Amy Kiser on June 18, 1998
  • Article

    Burning Bush - Why Nineties hippies are discovering mandolinist Sam Bush.

    With his neatly trimmed beard and shoulder-length, semi-feathered hair, mandolinist Sam Bush looks more like a lost Doobie Brother than a musical anarchist. But after more than a quarter-century operating in and around the country and bluegrass scene...

    by Michael Roberts on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    Hot Rod - Rod Piazza isn't your average blues harmonica player.

    "Maybe you'd better leave out the surfing stuff," bluesman/harmonica expert Rod Piazza says about his love of riding the waves near his Southern California home. "Sometimes it's a hindrance for people to know what you're really all about off stage, b...

    by Marty Jones on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    Playlist

    The Smashing Pumpkins Adore (Virgin) This is the best Pumpkins album to date by a very great distance, in large part because it hardly rocks at all. Few tunes on the disc get within thirty beats per minute of up-tempo, and those that do--su...

    by Kelly Lemieux on June 11, 1998
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    When the first shots in the Denver promoter wars were fired earlier this year, most observers figured that the primary combatants would be Universal Concerts, the company that took over what was left of the empire created by Barry Fey, and BGP/CMP, a...

    by Michael Roberts on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    Keeping the Pressure On - DJ Aztec has climbed to the top of Denver dance by doing things his way.

    Many American DJs leave the sophistication that's part of the European electronic mileu begging at the door of bland musical purism. But not Peter Gurule, aka DJ Aztec. Unlike plenty of his Denver peers, who favor the baggy-pants uniform that came in...

    by Kelly Lemieux on June 11, 1998
  • Article

    The Final Frontier - Denver's Space Team Electra takes its music to new places.

    Myshel Prasad wants to be understood, but not too easily. After a lengthy interview about The Vortex Flower, a new CD by her band, Space Team Electra, she writes a carefully composed five-page letter clarifying her remarks, then follows it up a few d...

    by Michael Roberts on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Getting Hooked - The wholesome perversity of the Hookers.

    Hookers vocalist Adam Neal is a changed man. When he and his mates (guitarist Noel Reucroft, bassist Pat Smith and drummer Paul Bishop, recently replaced by Chris Hamilton) first picked up their instruments in 1995, he was a middling punk-rocker who ...

    by Brad Jones on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Snake Charmers - Denver's Boa and the Constrictors squeeze new life out of jump blues.

    Musicians generally gravitate toward predictable day jobs to finance their passion: waiting tables, pumping gas, selling CDs and so on. But of the six members of Boa and the Constrictors, only harmonicat Jim Pansa, who is employed at a local violin-r...

    by Linda Gruno on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Playlist

    Tricky Angels With Dirty Faces (Island) Here's a lesson in artistic credibility. Ever since the release of 1995's Maxinquaye, which is among the best and most influential albums to pop up this decade, Tricky has been on a creative roll, but...

    by Joshua Green on June 4, 1998
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    Feedback

    In the December 11, 1997, edition of this column, those of you who've mastered the art of reading may have stumbled upon an item concerning Denver-based singer-songwriter Celeste Krenz and her imminent signing to Bohemia Beat, a nationally distribute...

    by Michael Roberts on June 4, 1998
  • Article

    Playlist

    Propellerheads Desksanddrumsandrockandroll (DreamWorks/'Heads Spin) Alex Gifford and Will White, a once-underground U.K. pair known by pretty much everyone but their mothers as Propellerheads, are the latest artists to be hyped relentlessly...

    by Michael Roberts on May 28, 1998
  • Article

    'Boning Up - A Boulder music festival pays tribute to the lowly trombone.

    When your job title is Professor of Trombone, you get used to the jokes. Bill Stanley, the University of Colorado at Boulder instructor who holds this obscure handle, has heard them all before, and he can prove it. "What's the difference between a la...

    by Marty Jones on May 28, 1998
  • Article

    Shell Game - Tortoise and Isotope 217 bring out two different sides of guitarist Jeff Parker.

    Jeff Parker, guitarist for Tortoise and Isotope 217, has never much liked conforming to expectations. "I went to school in Boston, at the Berklee School of Music," he says. "I was in the jazz scene there--and the thing for a young jazz musician ...

    by Michael Roberts on May 28, 1998
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    Just in case you're curious, the music press often strikes me as an elitist institution, too. Not that I think critics should use popularity to determine who is deserving of coverage; on page 73 of this week's issue is a piece I wrote about a pair of...

    by Michael Roberts on May 28, 1998
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    In this space last week, Pat Martin Bradley, executive director of the Association For Independent Music, said the new-age genre is among the strongest performers in the indie market. She's right, of course: With only a few exceptions, major companie...

    by Michael Roberts on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    Jim Dandy to the Rescue - The Southern-rock wildman on sex, politics and firing one up with the president.

    Black Oak Arkansas lead singer Jim "Dandy" Mangrum and his family have just spent the night huddled under a mattress in their bathtub as a string of tornadoes blew through their west Tennessee town. But when the time for an interview rolls around, he...

    by Marty Jones on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    Pussy Whipped - The pulchritudinous charms of Nashville Pussy.

    "There aren't any other women out there besides us who play hard and play fast and play proper but still possess a sexy, feminine quality," proclaims Corey Parks, bassist for the Georgia-based rock outfit Nashville Pussy. "Most girls who can really r...

    by Brad Jones on May 21, 1998
  • Article

    The Shock of the New - Neon Renaissance wants to change the way Denverites hear music.

    Scott Scholz is to musical ambition what Boris Yeltsin is to vodka consumption. Rather than taking the predictable course and putting together a band dedicated to the realization of his ideas, the 21-year-old student at the University of Denver's Lam...

    by Kelly Lemieux on May 21, 1998
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