Sunday, February 28, 2010

Extra Kool's CD Release Party

Hosting a party amidst a blizzard is tricky, but it is something every Denver musician will likely need to attempt at some point. On February 20th, I ran through the snowy streets of downtown Denver, carrying a huge stack of the Music Buzz, heading towards Leela's European Cafe. I was surprised, upon entering, to find the place filled nearly to capacity. A big crowd in weather like this? That's a sign you are in for a great show. Immediately, Extra Kool could be spotted walking through the crowd, talking and laughing with fans.

After a slow start (Leela's is notorious for its great atmosphere...and bad equipment), Dirty Lab's newest rapper kicked off the party. Joshie Juronimoe, at the age of 16, is sure to be a great addition to the lineup. There are things he will need to learn along the way like maintaining an even volume and building his stage presence. Nevertheless, he is one rapper you'll want to keep an eye on.

Next up was Damon JeVon. I was unfamiliar with him and his music, and oh, how I have missed out! He mixed rap and R&B seamlessly and intelligently. His passion showed through each song, whether it was about the apocalypse or about spirituality. In a rendition of "Sweet Lord," he sang a capella, with the crowd's rhythmic clapping as percussion. Very impressive.

I had heard rumblings about Doctype for months, but had never seen him perform. When he took the stage, he immediately grabbed hold of the audience. He is pure energy trapped in the body of a man. Against a background of pre-mixed tracks, he grabbed a drum and beat it with such force and vigor, I was sure he might spontaneously combust.

Then it was time for the man of the hour. Extra Kool did something interesting and unexpected: he performed the tracks from his new album--Even's Dead: Chronicles of an American Waster--start to finish, with the occasional help of Time. Kool's personable stage presence, sense of humor, and passionate delivery make each show fantastic...and well worth the trip through a blizzard.

After capping off the final song with a slowed-down, spoken version of "A Dracula Factory," he and Time obliged the audience with a few older songs, then graciously settled down to sign copies of his album for fans before they set out once again into the cold night.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Alice in Chains plays in Denver?? Aren’t those the grunge metal guys from the 90’s?...Are they still around?...

These were questions that we asked of me this last week when I told fellow music fans and friends that I was headed to the show. With their comments lingering on the back burner of my mind I was a bit skeptical.

When I showed up on that Cold winter evening at the legendary Fillmore Auditorium, I was struck to see so many music fans stoked to see this show. The buzz in the room to those who haven’t seen the band in years was, how do they sound after a few years off and with a new lead singer after the passing of their original Singer, Layne Staley in 2002. The band came back together in 2005. Since then William Duvall , has become the bands lead vocalist. This band has a tight polished sound. a polished tight sound.

After I photographed the first three songs of the show then decided to mingle with my fellow music fans. Even though this was my first Alice and chains show I quickly realized that I was not out of place. Singing along with much of their known favorites such as “man in the Box”, “Rooster” and one my favorites “ Would” … At the same time noticing that the rest of the Fillmore was also following along with.!

Yep these guys are still around... And Rock'n


Photos and post by Stu Kennedy

Monday, February 22, 2010

Fierce Bad Rabbit Video Premiere

I just wanted to share the new Fierce Bad Rabbit video, All I Have is You. The premiere was yesterday at the Art Lab in Fort Collins and was lots of fun.

Here is a little info on it if you were interested with the actual video.

"All I Have Is You", is the newest single by Fort Collins based indie pop band Fierce Bad Rabbit. The video was shot in their hometown of Northern Colorado by local director/producer Tomas Herrera with the help of set designer Tara Mason and costume/makeup artist Tiffany Glenn and lighting design by AEC Studios. The concept for the video stems from frontman Chris Anderson's lyrical content of the song, with meaningful people/events from the group's life splashed out in an intimate photo college that is a recurrent theme throughout the video. The video premiere is the first effort from the group, which formed in the spring of 2009.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Haiti Benefit at the Aggie

Fort Collins is hosting a benefit for Haiti this Wednesday at the Aggie Theatre.

haiti benefit show no beer specials

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Emerging Pictures: "Otello" at the Movies

On February 11, Denver theatergoers were treated to another cinematic opera courtesy of Emerging Pictures and the folks at the Northfield Harkins movie complex, located at I-70 and Quebec. This was Giuseppe Verdi’s crowning dramatic masterpiece, Otello, direct from the 2008 Salzburg Festival and conducted by Riccardo Muti—acclaimed by most aficionados as the top Verdi expert to currently lift a baton. Directed by Stephen Langridge and with sets by George Souglides, the production from the heart of Mozart country left little doubt that this work deserves to be on every opera fan’s Top Five list. Poet Arrigo Boito (himself a failed opera composer) collaborated closely with Verdi to craft a libretto that actually improves on the Bard’s stage play—reducing the number of principals and condensing the action into four tightly wound acts (running time equals 140 minutes), all while retaining every bit of tension, pathos, suspicion, and terror.

Without exception, the singing here was first-rate. Latvian tenor Aleksandrs Antonenko is practically unknown on this side of the Atlantic—he made his Met debut last March in Rusalka alongside Renée Fleming—but the 34-year-old is making a name for himself throughout Europe by singing some of the most difficult roles around. Otello is one of them, a stamina-draining character in one of the most dramatic grand operas ever written. He will be a major force in this field, if he doesn’t burn out too quickly. Russian soprano Marina Poplavskaya sang Desdemona with the proper amount of love-turned-to-despair. Her rendition of Verdi’s Ave Maria just prior to her death at the hands of her husband was heart-stoppingly beautiful. But the one singer whose appearance was as riveting as the character he played was Carlos Alvarez. Not only was his Iago pitch-perfect, but his onstage presence conveyed the proper sense of menace Shakespeare clearly intended when creating this character. In what is sometimes a throwaway role, Stephen Costello was superb as Cassio and should definitely enjoy some headlining in the very near future.

The only annoyance during the cinecast involved the camera director calling for an overabundance of ECU—extreme close-up—shots, which resulted in two unfortunate consequences. The first was the inability to enjoy whatever else was happening at the time, including reaction shots of the other actors as well as crowd movement and an overarching sense of staging. The second was the literal “in your face” perspiration that proved a bit too personal. Without a doubt, Antonenko had to undergo a complete redo of his face makeup between acts, considering the amount of schvitzing he did while he was singing.

Six more Emerging Pictures productions remain on this season’s Harkins Northfield calendar, beginning with the ballet Don Quixote on February 25. Bizet’s Carmen makes an appearance on March 18, a La Scala production with Anita Rachvelishvili as the title character and a couple of Euro-hotties (Jonas Kaufmann as Don José; Erwin Schrott as Escamillo) in the starring male roles. The next opera to be reviewed on this blog will be April 15’s Il Trovatore from Barcelona, conducted by Marco Armiliato. All programs begin at 7:00 p.m.

Monday, February 15, 2010

LOVE the sounds... Valentines Evening with LES CLAYPOOL

Sunday evening, Denver showed Bass Guitar Legend...The Colonel Les Claypool MUCH love of Crunchy Electro-funk sounds by completely selling out the Historic Ogden Theatre!
The evening started off with SAX charged Avantgarde Jazz, The Dead Kenny G's these cats had a great amount of energy!

As the evening progressed LES CLAYPOOL the Colonel" Bass Guitar Legend who many know as the Lead Bass man for the Band PRIMIS played with his distinctive slap style along with fun lyrics kept the house dancing and feel'n the Groove. He brought out a couple of different Bass interments that kept fans guessing and smiling at the same time...At one point in the show he played a stick with Strings and a bow... Imagine a Stand up bass without a body at all...also closing the show with a Banjo style Bass...Awesome!

Of course the whole band got into the mix with the two Drummers doing what I would have to call the most Wicked ...what seemed to last at least ten minutes... Drum and Xylophone, duet that I have experienced!! To bad I was upstairs jamming out far from the stage at that time to get a Photo...Darn!

The Colonel brought Listeners some New tracks such as One of my favorites "Boonville Stomp" and "red state Girl" for his newest album release "Of Fungi and Foe" and also a few from his many other alums of the past!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Jaret from Bowling For Soup interview

This is probably the most serious interview in the history of mankind (That involves endless dick jokes.).

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

FoCoMX 2010

Mark your calendars... FoCoMX 2010 is back with more local bands and more local venues.

Support your local music scene!


Tuesday, February 9, 2010


Denver’s very own Synthetic Elements Along with many other Local Artists including Lola Black, Vegas Crimes, Battleship Agenda, with special guests Nathen Maxwell & Rich Ross, held a benefit concert on February 5th at the Gothic Theater in order to raise money for Haiti.

All proceeds made will be donated to Oxfam America, a humanitarian organization currently on the ground in Haiti, delivering water and sanitation services to tens of thousands of people in need.

The goal of this event was to increase Denver’s awareness of the Haiti tragedy through music and donations from a silent auction. The bands offered to donate all profits made from their merchandise sales for the evening as a sign of their support to those in Haiti who have been through so much!. In addition, the Gothic Theater, Synthetic Elements, and The Denver Chophouse...Sing Sing Dueling Piano Bar intend to donate one dollar each per every ticket sold.

All proceeds that were made during the auction will go directly to the Haiti relief work sponsored by Oxfam America; no profits will be made. For questions regarding Oxfam America, please visit them online at

Locals Barbershop, located at 507 N. Lincoln Street Suite #102, will be displaying the auctioned items in store beginning January 29. Items, along with further information, will also be available online at The auction will continue at Locals Barbershop through February 20.

So get down there and bid on some of that cool swag to support some local bands and People in Need!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Locals Gritch on MTV!

Hey everyone!

We had two songs from our debut album "The world was asleep..." played on MTV's The Real World: Washington DC last night. The songs were "In The Meantime" and "This Night". Check out the link to MTV's website below:

http://Click here

Also, we are in the middle of recording our second full-length LP and hope to release it at some point in the next few months!


Rare Maris the Great Interview by Groovey...

The word “icon” is way too strong for most people in the entertainment scene. However for Maris The Great, it fits. Now I’m not saying Maris is universally loved or anything. He is probably the most polarizing icon in music and entertainment there is. I don’t know anyone who has a “Meh” attitude towards him. Honestly, if you can have a “Meh” attitude towards an overtly gay zombie overlord in full armor surrounded by his undead minions who brutally slaughter your favorite band during their interview ...? Well then I want what you’re having 'cuz it sounds like your doctor hooked you up. This is Maris’s 10-year anniversary of “killing” bands. Before we continue I am going to put my own disclaimer in this article 'cuz I like to keep my hate mail focused on me. is for adults only. It is a gore-fest of disturbing awesome and an amazing gallery of very skilled bloody effects with some very adult themes – and bitten off “wieners.” Yeah, I just said wieners, and various other blood-soaked nekkidness, as well. Here’s the interview:

CMB: How does it feel to have 10 years of killing bands under your belt?

Maris: Amazing. I certainly wouldn't have thought I would be doing this for this long.

CMB: So how did you come up with the concept of ‘killing bands'?

Maris: It began with the local music scene, here in Denver in late '99, early 2000. Discovering local music was like a religious experience for me. It really changed my life. The fact I could go out to all these venues and hear so many great, talented bands was a revelation to me. At the time, I didn't think the local press did enough to get the word out about the music scene, so I wanted to do it myself. I believe it was Brice Hancock of Rubber Planet that encouraged me to start a website. There were already other local music websites, but I wanted to create one that no one could ignore – something more Rock and Roll and much more dangerous. I really wasn't trying to be the star; I just wanted to be the naked guy on fire running down the street – in support of local music. The first band I interviewed was a local Goth group called Scary Valentine. When I did the group photos to accompany the interview, I asked the lead singer – a beautiful lady named Shari, to rub blood on her hands. When I saw the results ... there was just something about that blood that clicked with me deep inside. I can't explain it. I just knew I was supposed to be working with blood (laughs). From there, everything unfolded naturally and very quickly. My band name, the shtick – the whole thing. By my next interview with Rubber Planet, everything was in place. They were the first band I killed. There was hardly any blood in their feature, but we certainly thought it was gory at the time! After that, each band tried to outdo the previous one, just in terms of blood. And that's the way it's been ever since.

CMB: Did you go to school to learn how to do the gore effects? They look very realistic.

Maris: No. I just learned as I went. Initially, the gore was much more campy, because I didn't know any better. But as I learned more, I got better. After awhile it became darker as I began to work with heavier groups. In fact, I rarely appear in my murder photos anymore, because I give the pictures too much of a cartoonish vibe. I like them dark and disturbing because that's what most of my fans enjoy.

CMB: Do you get inspiration for gore from Horror movies?

Maris: Not as much as people think. I love horror films, but I'm not a fanatic. My gore comes from real-life horror. Many of my pictures were inspired by real crime scene photos, or hearing about something horrible that happened to someone. My pictures aren't a celebration of misfortune, however. I'm not trying to make light of the terrible things that happen to people in this world. While I do have a morbid sense of curiosity, just like anyone, my gore is really just me trying titillate people and maybe work through my own issues of mortality.

CMB: What inspired your look?

Maris: I have no idea. It just came naturally from my influences and the bands I loved growing up; Kiss, The Misfits, Plasmatics, Gwar. ...

CMB: Why do you go to such lengths to hide your real identity?

Maris: If you want to be Mike Myers, you can't let people see behind the mask.

CMB: You also made Maris The Great a gay zombie. Was that because you're gay? Or was there a statement behind it?

Maris: No. My site was never about sexuality; it was and still is about Rock and Roll. To me, Rock and Roll is about breaking rules. It's about challenging convention and crossing that thin red line that society tells you not to step over. Also, I always felt like an outsider to the gay community anyway, because I was deeply into Metal, Punk and Hardcore. It's only recently that I'm meeting other gay people in extreme music. But initially, I was all alone. Even today, I'd much rather be at a Death Metal show than a gay bar.

CMB: How many bands have you killed so far?

Maris: Around 100; about 60 are local bands from Colorado.

CMB: Since your site was initially only about the local music scene, how did you begin killing national groups? And why?

Maris: Like everything I do, it came about naturally. It happened some time around 2004. At that point, I had killed pretty much the entire local music scene, so maybe I was open for something new (laughs). A friend of mine named Donovan was in a touring group called Dork (eventually renamed to Animo). He asked me if I wanted to kill a national Pop/Punk band called The F Ups. I thought it would be some harmless fun, so I said, "Sure!" After I killed them, it was as if a magical door opened up and bands from all over the world wanted to die. At first, it made me uncomfortable doing groups from outside Colorado, but as time went on, I realized a local group will get so much more publicity if their murder is featured on my website, alongside a national group that everyone around the world knows about.

CMB: How do you go about designing your costumes?

Maris: In the beginning, I wouldn't wear much more than a bloody T-shirt, jeans and maybe a feather boa. It was all made by me. Just last week, I got my new jacket. It was specifically tailored and created for me by a company in California.

CMB: What band was the most difficult to kill?

Maris: A Metal band from Denver, named Drudgery. They were a three-piece. Two of the members wouldn't show up for the shoot and the lead singer and I had a bit of ongoing drama because of my overt gayness. I would never tolerate that today. Today, everything is run much more like a business, with contracts and a professional photographer (rebel photo). I even have a manager. I also take some time with a band before I kill them. I like to see first if they have the stomach and Rock and Roll sense of humor for what I do. If a band doesn't have either, I move on.

CMB: Any favorite kills?

Maris: Locally it would be, hands down, Erica Brown. That one has so much charm, and I love her so much. Nationally, a Metalcore group from Queens, New York, called Emmure. That one features the most disturbing and extreme photos I've ever done. Also, never before has a group suffered as much as these guys did for the shoot. They shaved their bodies to accommodate all the prosthetics I used. Those photos are so good that I've had police officers that have seen actual decomposition, personally compliment me.

CMB: You have had several television and magazine appearances. Which ones are you most proud of?

Maris: Locally, definitely the cover story Westword did on me. Nationally, Rue Morgue Magazine, being that magazine was a dream-come-true for me. I still get chills when I see my face in it. As for television, MTV did a feature on me when I toured with Bury Your Dead on Ozzfest, 2004. That was wild, because I didn't even know that I was on MTV. Fans told me about it. One of them taped it for me. I was blown away.

CMB: How did the Ozzfest tour come about?

Maris: Bury Your Dead simply asked me to join them and I said yes. I had a ball! I hunted and killed bands, danced on stage with Rob Zombie and hung out with and got to know Will Smith. His wife, Jada, was touring with her group (Wicked Wisdom), so I guess he decided to tour with her and brought their children with, as well. What was hilarious was, his children were afraid of me, but intrigued at the same time. Every day, they decided they were ready to meet me. One of Will's bodyguards would come to the Bury Your Dead tour bus and ask me to come with him. He and I would walk to the Smith's bus, to meet their children. As soon as the kids would see me approaching, they would shriek and run to the back of the bus. The whole meeting would have to be called off until they felt they had enough nerve to go through with it again. That went on for a while. In fact, Will wanted to fly me out to their birthday parties, but alas, they never got over being afraid of me, so it never happened.

CMB: Tell me about your band? Who writes the music?

Maris: My band was initially fictitious. The original Faggots of Death were Love.45 backing me up. We did one song at the very first show I put on. Once it became clear that people wanted to see some ongoing incarnation of the band, me and my creative partner, Dan Bray (Faggoria, lead guitar), sat down and started to piece the whole thing together and write songs. It's something we have fun with and nothing we want to do full time, just occasional shows. We are proud of the fact we have a very cool EP out, though. What I really love about the group is it is true-blue, old-chool Punk. We've sold out to nobody and nothing. It's totally funny and offensive. MySpace deleted our music page because of the complaints.

CMB: What magazines do you write for?

Maris: Right now, only one: Hails N Horns magazine. It's a national Heavy Metal mag. They publish my murders in every issue. There is talk of another national magazine publishing my “Wee Wee” CD reviews, but we're still working on it. We'll see what happens.

CMB: There's a lot of shock and controversy surrounding what you do. How do you deal with the backlash? Any funny stories about one of your haters?

Maris: Well ... the thing you have to realize is, whatever an artist creates, some people are going to "get it" and some people won't. That's what makes art so powerful; everyone has their own experiences with it and can draw their own conclusions. Occasionally, I get hate email, but what really fascinates me is when grown people begin to cry when they see me. It happens more often than you'd think, and it's not always women doing the crying. That perplexes me. Locally, there have been some groups that have made their dislike for me known, but nothing compares to the nationals. Scott Vogel of Terror and Sal Lococo of Sworn Enemy initially freaked out when they first met me. I mean, full on temper tantrums. My manager, Rainie Rain, had to talk to them and get them to calm down. Paul Koehler of Silverstein had me removed from Warped Tour because he said he didn't think death was funny. Johnny Christ of Avenged Sevenfold is freaked out by me. Even the gay community, here in Denver, had five police officers escort me out of PrideFest back in 2003 because I didn't fit in with their idea of diversity. It's all fine with me. Rock and Roll shouldn't fit comfortably within a box. It's supposed to me smelly and loud. I've always said, if what I do makes you laugh, you probably needed a good laugh. If what I do offends you, you probably needed to be offended.

Feb 2010 Covers

Can you think on your Feet?

With $1000 at stake, Colorado MCs are clamoring for a spot in the “Put Yo Money Where Ya Mouth Is” Battle at the Walnut Room, presented by Saul Good Music. This event is not for the novice MC, this is where the big dogs will battle it out to see who comes up on top.
Here's how it'll go down:
Wednesday February 17th- Preliminaries
Come off-the-top with your best freestyles to compete against other Colorado MCs for a spot in the finals. It’s $10 to enter, and your fate will be decided by a team of prestigious local judges. Also, for the audience's entertainment, there will be live performances by: SP Double, Fresh Breath Committee, ManeRok, and DJ Unison will be providing the beats.
Saturday February 20th- Finals
The top 16 selected at the prelims will compete for $1000, and will be judged by freestyle legend, Supernatural. The decks will be manned by DJ Unison and DJ Lazy Eyez.
So, it's time to step up, polish your vocal chords and give it your best because it's not only your reputation, but a cool G on the line.
For more info, contact Dent:

(originally posted by Nicole but there was a wierd script in it!)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Snubbed by the Oscars but not by the Mighty CMB!

Anvil was just in town and here's the goodies. Photos by Eric Syl Gruneisen and video by John Fitzsimmons holding Stew Kennedy's camera cuz Stew was kidnapped by evil ninjas.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Classical Review: Denver Eclectic Concerts (Jan 31)

Leave it to Dianne Betkowski and her colleagues at Denver Eclectic Concerts to offer up a program that was the quintessence of the group’s name. Known for offering an interesting mix of musical styles [see this CMB feature story], the concert at the Kirk at Bonnie Brae Sunday evening (Jan 31) featured a cellist who never uses a bow, a Samuel Barber song cycle, and a four-piece ensemble playing music from Mediterranean lands on some of the most interesting instruments ever to grace a classical stage. Oh, and there was also a world premiere of four songs set to poems by James Joyce.

Cellist Stephen Katz (pictured above) has devised a method of playing his instrument that negates the use of a bow in favor of a system he calls “flying pizzicato.” The right (bow) hand plucks at the strings in a guitar-like manner while the left hand does double duty—changing pitch by pressing the strings against the neck in the standard manner, but also flicking at them to create sounds in counterpoint to that generated by the other hand. He performed half a dozen of his own compositions, beginning with a piece titled “Cello-Commotion.” Look for a CD of his music sometime this spring.

Baritone David Farwig was last mentioned in CMB as Aeneas in a concert version of Henry Purcell’s opera, Dido & Aeneas. Here he performed Dover Beach by Samuel Barber, a melancholy piece set to a poem by Matthew Arnold and composed between the two world wars. He was accompanied by a string quartet consisting of Jennifer John and Ben Tomkins (violins), Kelly Shanafelt (viola), and Betkowski (cello). Pianist Andrew Cooperstock then joined the ensemble in the premiere of Four James Joyce Songs by Denver violinist/composer David Waldman. The piece is an interesting juxtaposition of melodious vocal line—appropriately tuneful in accompanying the poems written in the early 1900s—and unusual harmonies that are clearly part of post-modern classical music. Farwig has the ideal tonal voice for operatic art songs, wide-ranging yet controlled, but the venue’s poor acoustics sadly did him no favor. It would be interesting to hear him perform Waldman’s piece in a more vocal-friendly atmosphere.

Taking the stage to close the concert was Sherefe, four young musicians whose interest in traditional music from the Balkans and the Middle East has already led to one CD release. The ensemble consisted of Jesse Manno on various guitar-like instruments—laouto (Greek lute) and bouzouki among them—plus Zahara on percussion, Beth Quist on vocals and hammered dulcimer, and James Hoskins on cello and gadulka, a violin-type instrument one plays like a miniature stringed bass. They performed half a dozen dance-type folk tunes from the Greek Isles, Turkey, and Bulgaria.

The next Eclectic Concerts program takes place at The Kirk on Friday, April 16. The evening will feature a Haydn quartet, some original songs by singer/pianist Melissa Axel, and a fusion of balalaika and tango music as envisioned by the Russian group Triunfal.