The bandmembers describe their work on Nightmare Daydream as "stripping down rock and roll to its most primal elements — the riff, the rhythm, the snarl — and rebuilding it in [our] own image." They'll perform the album in its entirety, playing everything from "Dark Horse," a rock ballad laced with chugging, rhythmic power chords, to "What a Smile Can Hide," a synth-heavy and lyrical thunderstorm of angst.
Nightmare Daydream, produced by Grammy Award-winning Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, came out October 8. That's just one achievement in what's been a busy year for the Velveteers: The band was the opener for Guns N' Roses in August and took the main stage at the Westword Music Showcase in September, a gig hyped by a Westword cover story in which Kyle Harris confessed: "I’ve interviewed hundreds of musicians, many successful, but have never met such natural-born rock stars."
The trio, with singer-guitarist Demi Demitro and drummers Jonny Fig and Baby Pottersmith, plays some of the heaviest music in Denver, filled with powerful vocals and forceful beats delivered with a grunge reverb.
Demitro and Pottersmith met at a rock show in Boulder when they were fifteen and fourteen, respectively. They performed their first show as the Velveteers in 2014, and became a trio with the addition of Demitro's brother — before he decided to concentrate on his own band, Pink Fuzz. Fig joined the Velveteers this year, keeping the rhythm with Pottersmith on a conjoined set. The two drummers provide a tight, nuanced sound with hypnotizing synchronicity. Demitro, meanwhile, has an electrifying voice with guitar and song-writing skills to match. The band's music speaks of its rock-history roots but is unique in its approach, creating an entirely new sound that's both idiosyncratic and identifiable.
“The Gothic has a long history of bands playing there before making it big, whether it was Nirvana or Fugazi in the ’90s or Nathaniel Rateliff or Lady Gaga in the ’00s,” Danny Sax of AEG told Westword in September. “I think it sends an important message that the Velveteers are leveling up, performing on the same stage all these legends and locals played when they were starting out. Personally, I can’t wait to see their crazy live show on the big stage and through the killer sound system. It’s going to be an epic night of new tunes and old favorites, and I think it’s going to be a taste of things to come for the Denver rock scene. It’s an exciting time to live in Colorado, especially with bands like the Velveteers.”
This will be your chance to catch the band before it joins Grammy Award-winning rockers Greta Van Fleet for the North American leg of the iconic band's Dreams in Gold tour, which kicks off next March.
The Velveteers, 8 p.m. Friday, November 26, Gothic Theatre, 3263 South Broadway, Englewood, $18, axs.com.