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Put It on Your Playlist: The Best New Music Released in January

Greeley's Silver & Gold is an indie band doing big things.
Greeley's Silver & Gold is an indie band doing big things. Courtesy Casey Jack Serrano
The first month of 2023 started off with an eclectic mix of new local music, including a pair of indie-rock bands that are putting their own spin on the popular genre. EDM and livetronic are alive and well in the Mile High City, while a new husband-wife project from Flogging Molly's bassist introduced the term “mountain goth” into the musical lexicon. And for good measure, there’s still some brutal death metal bubbling up from Denver’s underground. Here is a list of releases you might have missed in January; tune in and enjoy.

Angelic Desolation
“Brutus McMucus”
“Brutus McMucus,” Angelic Desolation’s latest death-metal offering, is a stone-cold killer song full of riffs (Matt Markle knows his way around a fretboard) and Jay Medina’s well-toned growls. The death-metal four-piece, including drummer Max Thunder and bassist Leonard White, shared the latest single from upcoming album Orchestrionic Abortion (coming March 31) on January 11. Don’t let the silly song title fool you: Angelic Desolation put forth some serious “razorgrind” — as the band likes to call it — in the same vein as Cryptopsy, Aborted and Revocation.

Holdfast.
“Everything Wrong”
Brothers Tommy and Mikey Maddocks and their cousin Charlie Maddocks have been making music together for more than a decade now. Growing up as next-door neighbors in Windsor, the alt-rock trio now known as Holdfast. is excited to follow up the 2022 EP Movies with a new single, “Everything Wrong,” which was released on January 13. Influenced by stadium rockers like U2, Coldplay and Muse, Holdfast. knows how to write hooks. The chorus for “Everything Wrong,” sung by guitarist Charlie and paired with Mikey’s simplified bass line and Tommy’s consistent backbeat drumming, is an earworm. If it leaves you wanting more, don’t worry — there’s plenty to come from this band in 2023.

Volores

“All That We Could Need”
Volores, the new husband-wife project of Nathen Maxwell, bassist for Flogging Molly, and Shelby Maxwell, has only released a couple of singles so far, including “All That We Could Need” on January 13, but it’s the subgenre tag attached to the band that’s building intrigue. “Mountain goth,” as the Monument couple is calling it, is more Leonard Cohen meets Elliott Smith, so don’t expect high-energy punk. The somber singer-songwriter approach of Shelby and Nathen’s bass work makes Volores unlike anything out there right now. The band, rounded out by drummer Art Brown, is preparing to release debut album AGES on February 24, via Broken Stag Records. In the meantime, check out the video for “All That We Could Need.”

Break Science

“Mecha Flora”
Friday the 13th was a big day for Denver music, as Break Science, the EDM project of local artists Borahm Lee and Adam Deitch, treated everyone’s ears to “Mecha Flora,” from the upcoming EP of the same name (out on February 2). Break Science’s livetronic is typically meant to get large festival crowds moving, but the new tunes are a little more laid-back and chill. That’s not necessarily a surprise, since the writing process was undertaken during a time when sheltering in place was the norm. Given the duo’s background, particularly Lee’s work with Pretty Lights and Deitch’s co-founding role in funk band Lettuce, “Mecha Flora” is easy listening, but still upbeat enough to dance along to alone, even if it’s just a slight head bob while writing this roundup.
The Huckle Bearers
“Go Tell Yo Momma”
Nicholas Fennel and Eric Thompson have played in bands together before, but it wasn’t until they both found themselves living in Denver that the two teamed up to form the Huckle Bearers — an acoustic Americana, down-to-play-wherever-whenever duo. For the record, “Americana” is more of a catch-all term; the Huckle Bearers' music can be called cow punk, folk, outlaw country or blues, depending on the song. “Go Tell Yo Momma,” the fourth release from the act’s self-titled EP, is a foot-stomping bluesy number that showcases both Fennel’s guitar chops and Thompson’s upright bass playing. The act is focused on playing live more this year, so look for the Huckle Bearers coming to a bar near you.

Silver & Gold
Saving Face
Greeley might not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about local indie rock, but Silver & Gold is putting the Front Range city on the musical map. The five friends — singer and guitarist Devon Hildebrandt, bassist Brandon Vela, guitarist Pie Lombardi, drummer Taylor Drose and keyboardist Claire Jensen — initially met ten years ago at the University of Northern Colorado, where they were all music majors. Since then, Silver & Gold has been busy making a mix of indie rock, folk and shoegaze. Saving Face, the band’s latest six-song EP, was released January 26, after a two-year pandemic-related delay. But the extra time allowed the band to make the new tunes as heavy, ethereal and poppy as anything Silver & Gold has created before. “Simple Alone” is a good example of the group’s current sound, complete with a catchy chorus. You’re welcome.

Bury Mia
“We’ve Been Trying to Reach You About Your Car’s Extended Warranty”
Pop punk is having another moment in the mainstream spotlight, and that’s a good thing for all of us elder emos. Denver’s Bury Mia — bassist and vocalist Devin Martinez, guitarist and vocalist Justin O’Neal, guitarist Noah Droddy, and drummer Marcus Allen-Hille — is releasing “We’ve Been Trying to Reach You About Your Car’s Extended Warranty” on Friday, January 27. First off, you have to love the irreverent song title. It’s a mouthful, but it’s fun. The song itself is as emo-pop punk as it gets, including a breakdown that wouldn’t be out of place among a mid-2000s lineup of Fall Out Boy and Blink-182 tunes.

Unless otherwise noted, music is available on all major streaming platforms. Send releases for consideration to [email protected]
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