Sarah Fallon has a lovely voice and she knows how to speak Shakespeare, giving the poetry its due without ever sounding phony. At the Colorado Shakespeare Festival last summer, she brought real humor to the role of the jilted Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream — broad but never over the top.
When former Insider Spider members Nathaniel Barsness and Greg Schoonmaker (also ex-Mannequin Makeout) joined with Diana Sperstad (formerly of As Seen on TV) and Suzi Bromfield (previously with Supply Boy and Catatonic Lydia), they wrote some of the most feisty, beautiful pop songs ever to grace Denver stages and performed them as the charming, energetic Games for May, whose name was taken from a Syd Barrett song. In April 2007, the outfit released its first and only album, The Season Is the Reason, and included in each copy a photograph of the band posing at Sperstand's house, making each CD a collector's item. Despite having released such an accomplished record, the group wasn't able to capitalize on its achievement and wound up breaking up in May, ironically.
Instead of using shapes to define his artwork, contemporary conceptual artist Roland Bernier uses letters that form words. These letters are made of laser-cut mirrors, sawn plywood or printed vinyl. For a twenty-year retrospective — representing the second half of his forty-plus-year career — Walker Fine Art was transformed into what looked like a museum. One reason was that some of the installations, sculptures and bas-reliefs had been part of his Close Range show at the Denver Art Museum in 2001, but the best parts of Retrospective were all the new works that revealed Bernier's relentlessness in following his unique aesthetic journey.
Denver painter Clark Richert is a perennial favorite with young artists, both the many students he's influenced as an art professor at the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design and others who have taken his lessons through osmosis. Richert is interested in advanced math, which he uses to determine the details of his paintings and other works like "Riemannian Tangercies," his public-art piece in pavement and epoxy that decorates the fire lane at the Museum of Contemporary Art/Denver. That work was closely related to the paintings and digital prints shown at Rule last fall, in which he laid out non-repeating patterns using a range of colors against an indeterminate monochrome ground. An intriguing aspect of Richert's oeuvre is the way he remains loyal to his principles while constantly changing the way his pieces look.

Best Show to Rip the Still-Beating Heart Right Out of Your Chest

Vaux
Bluebird Theater
July 28, 2007

Vaux billed its final show as a funeral and encouraged everyone to wear black. That turned out to be an apt suggestion, given how many fans at the Bluebird felt that night. As expected, Vaux didn't go gently into that good night. Quentin Smith and company played like it was their last night on earth, with a molten ferocity that made everyone on hand simultaneously grateful to witness such a breathtaking performance and filled with regret that we'd never see it again.
While we don't know who your favorite singer-songwriter is, we're willing to wager a bet that his or her favorite singer-songwriter is Joe Sampson. Whether Sampson is playing with A Dog Paloma, sitting in with the Wheel or Bad Weather California, or just strumming and singing his pastoral folk tunes all by himself, he manages to maintain a rather unassuming profile. Like all the best songsmiths, though, he lets the music — and his growing list of admirers — do all the talking. And let's just say his songs make for absolutely stimulating conversation.
Recently, a gal at the hi-dive noticed us watching a show off to the side and came over to offer us some unsolicited advice. "Listen," she said, "if you want to really enjoy the show, you need to stand over here." And she nodded toward the rear of the club, insisting that's where the sound is the best. While we were grateful for the tip, the truth is that the sound at the hi-dive is flawless no matter where you're standing — just as long as Devon Rogers or Xandy Whitesel is behind the board. The best soundmen in town, these guys deliver consistently crisp mixes with clear and distinct separation that's music to our ears.

Best Spot for Free Shots and a Rose for the Ladies

P.S. Lounge

PS Lounge
Scott Lentz
With places proliferating where you can grab a decent drink at a decent price, the P.S. Lounge stands out because of its sweet extras. At some point during every evening here, each lady in your party will receive a single, sweet-smelling rose. But the free benefits extend to men, too. Every patron, whether male or female, also gets a complimentary bright-pink shot. (Rumor has it the key ingredient is Tampico punch.) So drink up, ladies and gents.
When the music community was hit by the news that Cricket on the Hill would be closing, shock waves spread through the scene. For countless locals, the Cricket will be remembered as the place they got their start, earned their keep, made their name or found the family they never had. The storied bar in Capitol Hill has been a part of so many lives here for so long that losing it is almost like CBGB closing in New York.
Sean Tarrant's gifts are many: He's tall, lithe and athletic; he has a good voice and a magnetic presence; his work is informed by a discriminating intelligence. And when he's on stage, it's hard to watch anyone else. As Paroles in All's Well That Ends Well, Tarrant showed that even a laughingstock can have some humanity, and perhaps even moments of likability.

Best Of Denver®

Best Of