Crash 45 ended its three-year run on Saturday, December 20. It was a place you could see experimental music, bike clubs, "burners" and b-movies. Its very unassuming facade hid the array of metal art inside.
When you stepped inside on the final night, the staff cheered you in welcome and some good electronic music was being played by a DJ. It smelled of barbecue, and on the patio a large, metal orb with square-ish holes to let out the fire warmed visitors.
The way it was put together was a little like a Winchester Mansion in miniature with back rooms, a basement, a patio, a kitchen and of course the main bar room area that looked like some kind of old west/medieval tavern. It felt like an old saloon that had been cleaned up slightly.
The ambiguous visual presentation of the place and the way it was outfitted by Shane Evans lent Crash a mysterious quality. The 15th St. Tavern was like that in the late '90s.
For a short run in 2013 David Britton formerly of Odam Fei Mud, currently of Yao Guai and other projects, had a monthly experimental music night at Crash and he brought in some of the best obscure and not so obscure artists out of that milieu. One night included the strangest and one of the most original bands in Denver, TJ Toddler, as well as the free-jazz-avant-flamenco act, Malamadre. Other nights rock bands like the Buckingham Squares played. In 2013 it co-hosted Goldrush Festival. There are few like it anywhere.
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If you'd like to contact me, Tom Murphy, on Twitter, my handle is @simianthinker.