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Katie Carroll: Music on the Front Range this weekend

— It’s nearly the end of February, and we’re over the halfway mark for the ski season (yikes!). That also means everyone is susceptible to the Yampa Valley fever.

Has it actually been almost 90 days since you’ve left the Valley because you just couldn’t bear to miss one day on the sticks? I encourage you to take preventative measures; head to the Front Range for a night and dance, jam and give the pins a rest. This week, check out one of these eclectic shows in Denver.

Sister Sparrow and the Dirty Birds



Sister Sparrow should be no stranger to us Steamboaters. The powerhouse first came to Steamboat three years ago at Strings, and followed up with a Rock the Boat concert last April. Led by Arleigh Kincheloe (Sister Sparrow) and backed by some astounding men (the Dirty Birds, natch), the group fuses dirty blues, funk, gospel and rock. Let’s put it this way: you’d never know that the band is from Brooklyn. I think their relationship with the crowd is best summed up in their track, “Fight” with the lyrics, “I bet you tire of all my fire/And every insanity/You drive me crazy, baby you make me wild…” except we definitely don’t get tired. They just set the crowd on fire.

If you go: Tuesday, Feb. 24, 7:30 p.m. at the Fox Theatre, Boulder.



Steve Aoki

This is your opportunity to live on the edge. Go wild on a Wednesday night bender in Denver at the Steve Aoki show. The electronic house musician/DJ is famous for making every show feel like a party. This is the guy who invented “caking people,” and it was such a hit that it’s now part of nearly every show. There might be rafts through the crowd, there could be champagne sprayed on you, and if you have any doubt about the level of awesome, know this: 2,000 fans rioted just last week in El Paso after a concert was canceled.

If you go: Wednesday, Feb. 25, 8:30 p.m. at the Ogden Theatre, Denver.

Magic Beans

The traveling Nederland band heads back to the Front Range for a show Friday night with the Heavy Pets. You may have missed this band at Schmiggity’s a few months ago, and if you did, don’t miss Friday’s performance if you’re in Denver. Imagine every genre of music you can create with stringed instruments, drums and a synthesizer. Then whir it up in a blender, and you get Magic Beans: “groove grass,” “space funk,” “ameritronica.” If you can’t wrap your head around that yet, head to their website where you can download entire live shows for free. You may want to save part of it for later, though –— as this show is billed to go until 2 a.m., you could end up with an eight-hour download.

If you go: Friday, Feb. 27, 8 p.m. at the Cervantes’ Masterpiece, Denver.

Houndmouth

“Oh yeah, I saw those guys when they played The Bluebird.” It won’t be long before Houndmouth is headlining their own shows at Red Rocks instead of being the opening act. The four musicians got a lucky break at the South By Southwest festival a couple of years ago and have since toured with the Drive-By Truckers, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, the Lumineers and Lucero. Jay Sweet, the Newport Folk Festival booker, said, “…when I first heard Houndmouth, it was like freshest tasting art I had heard in many moons. A true musical omnivore’s delight.” Whether by accident or not, the oral emphasis in the name and Sweet’s description further highlight their talented vocals. Imagine pared-down Vampire Weekend, more seductive than the Lumineers, and you’ve got an idea of their sweet four-part harmonies.

If you go: Saturday Feb. 28, 8 p.m. at the Bluebird Theater, Denver.


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