Katie Carroll: Ignatius Reilly | SteamboatToday.com

Katie Carroll: Ignatius Reilly

Denver band Ignatius Reilly will bring its sound of progressive rock 'n' roll to the Old Town Pub for two nights this weekend.

— Get ready, city contractors. You’re about to bid on Old Town Pub, because all odds point to Ignatius Reilly blowing the roof off the place during their two-night gig this weekend.

The young band, formed in 2013, is a motley crew of southern and Midwestern musicians who now are proud to call Colorado home. Music snobs, don’t be fooled by their founding date. Ignatius Reilly has become a player in the Colorado music scene because of the musicians’ impressive resumes: between them, the guys have shared stages with Widespread Panic, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Mike Gordon and Leftover Salmon.

The band plays “acoustic numbers with raucous electric boogie,” originals and covers. Keen observers will note several things just from that one phrase. “Acoustic numbers” may suggest a token Valentine’s Day tune on Saturday night, but no guarantees.

See the second part of the sentence: raucous! Their music is not merely energetic or lively, but boisterous, joyful and disorderly. Ignatius Reilly did meet in the South, so they’ll bring the ebullience of Bourbon Street and the ‘Nawlins electric boogie to our ranching town.

Just imagine – with that kind of attitude, they would have fit right into an ol’ time saloon where the old miners and cowboys of the ‘Boat settled in for some D&D rowdiness (minus the John Wayne brawl, of course).

So. Ignatius Reilly. Named for the famous first Jesuit? The Washington Post foreign affairs writer? Nope – named for the protagonist in what some call America’s comic novel masterpiece, “A Confederacy of Dunces.”

Ignatius J. Reilly is the Don Quixote of the New Orleans French quarter; he is a sloth, obese, creative, eccentric and believes in the wheels of fortune and fate. Ignatius Reilly told Listen Up Denver the name came about during rehearsal. “We were debating what to call ourselves at practice one day and our drummer saw the book ‘The Confederacy of Dunces’ on a bookshelf. We’re all huge fans of this book that’s set in New Orleans and the lead character is named Ignatius J. Reilly. The name seemed to be a good fit for us.”

Moral of the story: Musicians who love comedy and identify with southern Don Quixotes get two-night runs at Old Town Pub.

Nobody likes a concert where no one is singing, so I suggest checking out their free MP3s on their Facebook page. Their earliest originals, “New Found Glory,” “Temperature’s Rising” and “Life on the Run” are all available to download for free.

Ignatius Reilly has an album on the way, “Tearing the Skies Apart,” which must be what they do for fun since there is no possible literary reference. “Skies” was supposed to debut last month, but it is unclear if it actually made it out. I suppose we’ll find out Saturday night just what creative juices have been raging in their minds.

Ignatius Reilly is Brock Elam (guitar, vocals from Georgia); Jeff “Birddog” Lane (drums, percussion from Tennessee), Ethan Ice (keyboards and keyboard bass from the Bay Area); Eric Bullock (lead guitar from Kentucky); and Mason Watkins (bass guitar from Missouri).

Friday and Saturday shows start at 10 p.m. at the Old Town Pub with a $5 cover.

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