Concerts

Ripley Johnson of Moon Duo on the move to Colorado and the duo's tapestry of sound

Erik "Ripley" Johnson first came to prominence in the rock underground with his San Francisco-based band, the Wooden Shjips. That project's hypnotically dark, droning psychedelia became a favorite of fans and critics alike. In 2009, Johnson teamed up with Sanae Yamada to form Moon Duo (due at The Hi-Dive on April 16). Rather than the gritty, Chrome and Spacemen 3-esque sound of Wooden Shjips, Moon Duo often seems to explore a poppier, more meditative side. Its recently released Mazes finds the duo creating what might be described as space rock for people as into the primitive sonic mayhem of the Seeds and the boiling harmonics of Silver Apples as Spiritualized's twisting, warping melodies.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.