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Like an 8-bit joyride, catch Denver’s glitch-pop Goremall



If You Like: Com Truise • Nintendo • Chromatics • Sega Genesis

Nostalgia season is upon us, and I’m not immune to it. This time of year I often think of the best Christmas I’ve ever had. At the tender age of 8, in 1993, my parents, being of sound mind and parenting, gifted my then and somehow still younger brother and I the Sega Genesis Entertainment System. It was our Christmas Story Red Ryder moment. We did it! For years to come, that game and many others were how we spent probably too much of our free time.

The older I get and the further away from those days, the more something peculiar happens; I find myself humming the songs from those old games. The literal in game old synth-heavy diddies have wormed their way into my brain, to the point where I can tell you which level corresponds with which song. I’m not the only one; not by a long shot. There are now entire genres of nostalgia-based and era-heavy musicians and artists out there.

Synthwave is one of them. Initially an offshoot of the 1980’s New Wave, today’s version is largely an online dispersed and traded music style heavily mirrors the electronica-induced movie soundtracks and video games of the 80’s and 90’s and funnels them through our internet-obsessed culture to create a retro-futuristic sound that can really take you back into time.


The music of Denver’s Goremall is one of these time machines. Far from being just retro synth tones with overlaid beats, Arcadeland from Goremall takes it to 88, really capturing the fun and analog-tech musicality of 90’s video games and movies, and in the process transports you headfirst into a simpler and more care-free era.



Pick up Arcadeland from Goremall right now from Bandcamp

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Boulder indie-rocker Eric Dorr’s debut EP shines bright from the get-go



The indie music camp has sure seen quite the split over the years, with the early college-rock station inspired purists of yesteryear often scoffing at the larger influences that pop and electronic music have had on the genre within recent years, going so far as to call the genres original intentions “dead.” Which, my friends, is dumb as hell. Sure, we all love our Superchunks and our Dinosaur’s Jr, but to call an entire genre dead is to negate the existence and unyieldingly diverse essence of a new batch of DIY artists.



To do so would also discount Boulder songwriter Eric Dorr, which is something I will not stand for. On his sublime Dream Routine EP, Eric has managed to exude a work that combines the recognizable mishmashes of so-called “original” indie tenets of singer-songwriter espousal and heart and weave them delicately with an undeniable feel-good brash-pop fabric and subtle electronic flourish, with songs like album midpoint track Leaves veering into electronic territory (albeit with heart and songwriting chops firmly intact) and album closer Next to Me echoing the undeniable good vibes of Jimmy Buffettalbeit updated for the youngins but still taking listeners to Margaritaville regardless. The resulting album is full of sweetly tangible indie rock that goes down smooth.




Eric Dorr’s Dream Routine is available for digital and physical purchase now via Bandcamp. For show dates and more, head to Dorr’s Facebook page.

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The Country-Punk fury of COS Tejon Street Corner Thieves is a sound to behold



COS: Rip-Roarin’ Countrypunx | Tejon Street Corner Thieves

The hard tourin’, hard livin’ trashgrass heroes the Tejon Street Corner Thieves are back and better than ever with their new album Goers. While their 150 proof still of americana, bluegrass, and country-fried punk have been a fan favorite for a while now, they’ve somehow managed to outdo themselves on Goers, fuel-injecting this into a new batch of tunes that take said formula and rev it up even further with a newfound sweetness and storytelling ability.


DEN: Garage Rock Reverberation | Henry & the Kissengers

Bombsaway, the new six song sonic offering from Denver’s perfectly named Henry and the Kissengers, is hi-watt garage-rock hip shake and retro-fed psychedelic squelch personified, a perfect marriage of the Kinks grit and the Byrds sheen. Unsurprisingly, the entirety of the album sounds and more importantly feels like an unearthed relic straight from your grandparents attic via the free-love 1960’s. Don’t take the brown acid!


DEN: Double Indie-Pop trouble | Kissing Party / Bleak Plaza

At 3 songs each, this split album between Denver’s Kissing Party and Bleak Plaza masterfully showcases both groups in sharp, succinct bursts; tracks 1-3 showcase the largely uptempo and raucously jangle-pop of Kissing Party, with the last 3 delving into the swirling, hazy psych-pop of Bleak Plaza; offering listeners two great tastes that perfectly complement one another.


DEN: Ska-Jazz Mastery | Dendrites

Fun Fact! Not only is the term “Rude Boy” a dank Rhianna song, but a classic term for followers and fans of Jamaican ska and reggae music. And my newest fave batch of Rude Boys are Denver’s Dendrites, who make the kind of tightly coiled and energetic jump-up instrumental ska tunes that will no doubt have you dancing the dang night away. Pick it up. Pick. It. Up.



All releases available for purchase now thru Bandcamp. Go Local!

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Beat Insurgence



Since it’s inception, hip-hop music and culture have thrived and fueled themselves upon the innovation of the genre. From the earliest incarnation and modification of Reggae and Dub freestyle toasting, to the disco era good times of the Sugar Hill Gang, to our current cultural fascination with down south trap mumble raps, these varied artists have risen to this occasion again and again, along the way pushing boundaries at every turn.

But it doesn’t mean a damn thing if the beats don’t slap. Along with the evolution of rapping, b-boy, and graffiti lifestyles, hip-hop production and the underground consortium of DJ’s and producers have also seen and gone through the same changes and evolutions over the years–each new beat tape and DJ set pushing the envelope, rebirthing themselves like prodigal phoenixes from the ashes.

And on the cusp of these new changes and facets of hip hop are the next Colorado-grown batch of producers and beatmakers. Whether they opt to pay homage to the greats of the past or get inventive on the next level, this new batch of producers is on our radar.

Big J Beats

The musicality and audio stylings of Denver’s Big J Beats are the aural equivalent of the old phrase Go Big or Go Home. And this dude goes big. Between his lo-fi aesthetic and glitzy gloss-over use of dank samples, this Coloradoan’s musical output and production style harbor a loose and future funk feel; his music evokes hot nights out on the town, riding in the backseat of your boys hoop-d, not knowing what will happen next but for damn sure knowing it’ll be a great time.


The vast output that makes up the online catalog of Colorado Spring’s producer Elimence (stylized ELiMenCe) may simply fall under the golden era style of boom bap hip hop, but a quick listen or two shows that there is so much more. Through sheer innovation, Elimence has added doses of electronic-infused experimentation and glitch-laden nu jazz into the fold, turning his music and style into a passionate pouring of the soul into every mix.

Crl Crrll

St Petersen, the newest album from Denver’s own Crl Crrll (real name Carl Carrell) is an indelible and unfazeable mix of modern Soul, trip-hop production, and thick electronic swell, converging head on with a strong sense of 90’s uptempo R n’ B and some of the catchiest songwriting in recent memory. If he keeps this up, you’ll for damn sure be seeing Crl Crrll making some big moves here in the future.



Telluride, CO’s Amalgimals take a unique sonic approach to their music; sure, the samples and drums are dusty and the beats still knock, but this production duo instead opt for a loose, trippy, psychedelic vibe with their beats rather of going the traditional hip hop route. It’s weird, it’s off-kilter, and it’s most importantly just what hip hop could use more of in an era of mumble-rap nonsense filling the airwaves.

Davey Remix

Trap music has seemingly jumped the shark. The triplet-induced and 808-heavy beats themselves, hailed a decade ago as the future of hip hop by music mags (though their roots run much deeper) have become largely passè. I say largely because of artists like Denver’s Davey Remix, who generously utilizes the down South format to make intricate neck snappers on the regular, blending trap tonality with smooth R’n’B silkiness and a serious pop edge to hopefully take the genre into the next era with panache.

Think we missed someone? Have a favorite hip hop producer or artist in Colorado? Let us know! Send it to [email protected]

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