The Ten Best Concerts in Denver This Weekend

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

We're celebrating all that makes Denver's art scene this weekend with Artopia. Other great shows this weekend include the second night of the Dirty Few's release show at the hi-dive, Motion City Soundtrack at the Gothic and more. 

The rest of our picks follow. 

Nicholas Payton Trio
When: Thu., Feb. 19 9:00pm
Where: Dazzle Restaurant & Lounge
What it'll cost you: $25
Why you should go: It was evident early on that New Orleans trumpeter Nicholas Payton had tremendous trumpet chops. After a stint with legendary drummer Elvin Jones, Payton inked a deal with Verve at the age of twenty and went on to release seven discs for the imprint, as well as a number of albums on other labels.

Dirty Few (album release) 
When: Thu., Feb. 19 8:30pm
Where: Hi-dive
What it'll cost you: $8
Why you should go: One of several openers for the second night of the Dirty Few's album release show, Bud Bronson & the Good Timers' music is not all dramatic delivery with no substance; instead, it's the kind of triumphant power pop that feels like it's coming from an honest place rather than being an affectation of style. For these guys, getting a hold of an older relative's record collection was a beginning point, not a destination. That they have moved beyond o bvious influences makes Bud Bronson & the Good Timers one of the most exciting rock ­and­ roll bands in Denver at this moment.

When: Fri., Feb. 20 9:00pm
Where: Ogden Theatre 
What it'll cost you: $33.75-$35/2-day pass $40
Why you should go: It's impossible to miss the influence of New Orleans in the brash, brassy sound of Galactic. Since forming in 1994, the sextet has experimented with plenty of sounds and styles, dabbling in everything from hip-hop to electronica. But the lush legacy of New Orleans's native jazz, funk, soul and R&B styles has been a constant, and the shadow of the Big Easy continues to loom large: The band's two-night stand at the Ogden comes less than a week after Mardi Gras. 

The Pharcyde
When: Fri., Feb. 20 9:00pm
Where: Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom
What it'll cost you: $5-$20
Why you should go: Twenty-two years ago, five dudes from South Central Los Angeles put out a record called Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde. Things haven't been quite as smooth for the Pharcyde since then. Today, only Imani and Bootie Brown remain, and tensions between them and their former bandmates have made more headlines than the music. But Bizarre Ride has enough soul to spare: Even half of its creators in action make for a better show than most bands can muster at full strength.

Blackberry Smoke
When: Sat., Feb. 21 7:30pm
Where: Fillmore Auditorium 
What it'll cost you: $20/$25
Why you should go: Blackberry Smoke is an Atlanta band who has given new life to the phrase "southern rock." There's something here for everyone: soulful ballads, arena rock, and full-bodied country jams. With plenty of Georgia charm and lavishly thick accents, they're sure to win over even the most stalwart cosmopolitan crowds.

Westword Artopia 2015
When: Sat., Feb. 21 7:00pm
Where: City Hall
What it'll cost you: $25-$75
Why you should go: Curated by Jolt from Guerilla Garden, Artopia showcases the best of the best in the art community and exposes art enthusiasts to up-and-coming local artists. Enjoy cocktails as you move through different art installations and exhibits involving the senses: taste, smell, touch, feeling and hearing. Music by the Reminders, Wheelchair Sports Camp, Venus Cruz, Plume Varia, Dragondeer, Tommy Freed and Gabriella Gutierrez Reed, DJ Awhat!, DJ Hollow, SF1, DJ J'Adore, DJ Low Key, DJ ISH, DJ A-L. 

When: Sat., Feb. 21 9:00pm
Where: Club Vinyl 
What it'll cost you: $8-$10
Why you should go: On the dance floor, Kolombo's wall­shaking house sets are a little bit eerie, a little bit playful — and a whole lot funky. He takes the energy and vibe of a mid­'90s Chicago house set blasted in an illegal warehouse, then smooths it out just a touch with his European sensibility. What gets pumped out of the speakers is upbeat, powerful dance music at its finest, a blend that will get even the most stubborn wallflowers shaking hips and bouncing booties. 

Motion City Soundtrack
When: Sat., Feb. 21 9:00pm
Where: Gothic Theatre 
What it'll cost you: $25 
Why you should go: Like many pop-punk giants of the early 2000s, Motion City Soundtrack has shared in the wealth of the genre's surprising resurgence, most notably with a co-headlining tour with Saves the Day and Say Anything in 2011. The band's emo style is rooted in singer, guitarist and principal songwriter Justin Pierre's conversational, storytelling lyrics, which become wildly three-dimensional when the band plays live.

The Growlers
When: Sat., Feb. 21 8:00pm
Where: Marquis Theater
What it'll cost you: $15/$18
Why you should go: There's a touch of rockabilly, a hint of early psychedelic garage rock and a dash of surf guitar. Like the Strange Boys, the Growlers sound out of time, retro in the same sense that there is a retro aesthetic to the films of David Lynch — minus the mind-warping sense of the bizarre, of course. The strangeness of the Growlers is more subtle, tuneful and catchy, but no less eccentric.

Jorma Kaukonen
When: Sun., Feb. 22 7:00pm
Where: Swallow Hill Music Hall
What it'll cost you: $40
Why you should go: During the late 1960s, guitarist Jorma Kaukonen and bassist Jack Casady had their time pretty much filled as founding members of pioneering (and popular) San Francisco psychedelic group the Jefferson Airplane. When performing solo, Kaukonen is just as compelling on guitar as he is a singer. He's touring in support of his brand new album, Ain't In No Hurry, a collection of classic American songs, blues and rockers penned by Kaukonen as well as a lost Woody Guthrie lyric set to music.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.