Global Dub Festival at Red Rocks: Friday, May 16 The merging of hardcore hip-hop with heavy bass lines and melodic keyboards was an inevitable one, but you would never have guessed that its birthplace would be Canada. Datsik, known in his home town of British Columbia as Troy Beetles, fuses the heaviest elements of rap and dubstep to create a unique sound that translates into the equivalent of standing in the middle of an epic man-versus-machine battlefield. With heavy distortion and intergalactic samples, Datsik delivers a show similar to that of Excision, a fellow Canadian who helped boost his status by collaborating on various tracks. Datsik joins Crizzly, Pegboard Nerds and Dotexe, Basscrooks for this year's Global Dance Festival.
The Chris Robinson Brotherhood at Cervantes': Friday, May 16 While the Black Crowes could lay down some mean Stones-inspired southern rock, the band could also delve into extended psyched out jams. It didn't take frontman Chris Robinson long to form his own group after the Crowes announced they were going on "indefinite hiatus" in 2010 after two decades together. The Chris Robinson Brotherhood opts for more of the jam route, which is quite evident on the band's 2012 release, Big Moon Ritual. Crowes fans and Deadheads alike will most likely dig the CRB.
Official Movement Festival pre-party at NORAD: Friday, May 16 Denver is close enough to legendary electronic-music city Detroit that it makes sense to throw a party to celebrate the onset of Movement, the Motor City's own cream-of-the-crop springtime electronic-music festival. This year's headliner for the official Movement pre-party is Todd Edwards, the frisky, feisty house-music impresario known for his collaborations and innovative remixes. He's the only artist to guest-star on two Daft Punk albums, and his unusual remix style takes tracks from some of the leading artists in the electronica scene and makes them his own. Edwards is a true jack-of-all-trades whose ability to spin a set matches his proficiency in the studio. Denver is in for a night of soulful, energetic house music at NORAD this Friday, May 16.
Will Hoge at Grizzly Rose: Friday, May 16 In a time when singer-songwriters are as plentiful -- and nearly as indistinguishable -- as the corporate coffee shops lining the streets of tony shopping districts, Will Hoge stands out like a homegrown roaster serving his hand-picked beans in a secondhand mug in some bohemian boutique. Hoge's raspy, soulful voice is as expressive as it is authentic: Every word he sings sounds genuinely heartfelt, like he's lived it, whether he's indulging his Southern-rock roots on cuts such as "Pocketful of Change," doing his best Otis Redding on "When I Get My Wings," or singing with a pained resignation on ballads like "Goodnight/Goodbye." And Hoge's songs are affecting even when he's not doing the singing: Just ask the Eli Young Band, which has made "Even If It Breaks Your Heart," a song Hoge co-wrote, a country staple.
Junior Brown at the Walnut Room: Friday, May 16 With his handmade "guit-steel" guitar and deep, country drawl, Junior Brown makes a hell of an impression. Over the course of four decades, Brown has taken his blues-inspired honky tonk across the nation and around the world, thrilling fans of honest and well crafted roots music. In truth, Brown is one of a very select group of artists who has as great instrumental skills as he does songwriting chops.