Westword Music Showcase and the Best Denver Concerts This Weekend

The Flaming Lips release American Head on September 11.
The Flaming Lips release American Head on September 11. George Salisbury
The Westword Music Showcase descends upon Denver on Friday and Saturday, September 9 and 10. There are plenty of national bands coming to town for the annual event, including psychedelic legends the Flaming Lips, indie popsters St. Motel and Indiana funk lords Main Squeeze, all playing on Saturday at the Mission Ballroom Outdoors. The two-day festival is also a great time to take in the rich, local music scene that Denver has to offer, especially Friday night in RiNo — which is all free.

Some Friday highlights: Dream-pop outfit mlady plays Gold Point, Elektric Animals play the Larimer Lounge and DespAIR Jordan swings by the Matchbox.

The Main Squeeze brings the funk to the Brighton Stage at Mission Ballroom Outdoors on Saturday. Later in the night, N3ptune plays the Native Roots stage, and the Flaming Lips close out the evening on the Brighton Stage.

Check out this guide to help with your festival planning.

In other music news, the Okee Dokee Brothers play Swallow Hill Music on Sunday for some post-festival bluegrass.

Friday, September 9, 7 p.m.
Gold Point, 3126 Larimer Street

mlady, fronted by Hannah Beeghly, is Denver's answer to dream-pop duo Beach House. While you're there, catch singer-songwriter Kayla Marque at 8 p.m. and quirky indie folk group Bluebook at 9 p.m.

Elektric Animals
Friday, September 9, 10 p.m.
Larimer Lounge, 2721 Larimer Street

Denver's Elektric Animals make a unique brand of electronic-influenced pop music that is radio-friendly and good for dancing. Stick around the Larimer Lounge for indie rockers Neon the Bishop at 11:10 p.m. and Boulder fuzz lords Pink Fuzz at 12:20 p.m.

DespAIR Jordan
Friday, September 9, 11:10 p.m.
The Matchbox, 2625 Larimer Street

A supergroup of sorts, DespAIR Jordan includes members of numerous Denver bands. Its music is firmly rooted in the shoegaze world, but owes a lot to the Cure.

The Main Squeeze
Saturday, September 10, 1:15 p.m.
Mission Ballroom Outdoors, 4242 Wynkoop Street

Funk is part of a balanced musical diet and an awesome way to start your Saturday. The Main Squeeze definitely plays the funk, but the Bloomington, Indiana, band also incorporates a lot of hip-hop and even some psychedelic rock into its fun sounds. See the act on the Brighton Stage.

Saturday, September 10, 8:40 p.m.
Mission Ballroom Outdoors, 4242 Wynkoop Street

The Denver artist only released his debut full-length, RENAISSANCE, last year, but has been making his mark on Denver ever since. N3ptune likes to push the lines between genres with the energy of being in church coupled with the precision of a Beyoncé show. He counts artists like James Brown, Prince and Michael Jackson, Howlin' Wolf and Big Mama Thornton among his influences.

The Flaming Lips
Saturday, September 10, 9:30 p.m.
Mission Ballroom Outdoors, 4242 Wynkoop Street

The Flaming Lips have released a 24-hour song, a song that came inside a flash drive packaged in a real human skull, a full-length that came on four separate discs meant to be played simultaneously, and sixteen albums of psychedelic music that seems to only get weirder as they progress though time. Their live show is a spectacle to behold and can feature unicorns and frontman Wayne Coyne inside a giant clear beach ball.

The Okee Dokee Brothers
Sunday, September 11, 11 a.m.
Swallow Hill Music, 71 East Yale Avenue

The Okee Dokee Brothers, based in Minneapolis, play a mix of bluegrass and child-oriented roots music. Bandmates Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing grew up in Denver together.

Know of events that should be included on this list? Send the details to [email protected] Looking for more to do? Visit the
Westword calendar.
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