As far as archetypal themes go throughout history, duality would be right up there with the best of them: There's the yin and yang of Chinese philosophy. There's the notion of god figures and devil figures throughout the history of theistic mythology. And, of course, there's the two-party system in American politics, in which we are all told repeatedly that there are no other possible options available.
So it is in the music world! Where there is acoustic, so must there be electric. And while the recently completed MeadowGrass Music Festival's lineup of Americana and roots music really ought not be confused with Portlandia's "Battle of the Gentle Bands" sketch, Newtonian physics nevertheless demands there must be an equally impressive and, one might say, opposite reaction in the field of music festivals.
For those who enjoy the more extreme side of things, the first two weeks of June will be an exciting time, indeed. June 3 to 4 sees the sprawling 71Grind festival take place both at the Black Sheep and Flux Capacitor, featuring an impressive array of both national and homegrown metal, grindcore, thrash, crust and all such fun things. The 71Grind proceedings kick off with a pre-show at the Flux on June 2, featuring New Jersey grindcore act Skuz, Las Vegas hardcore band Cheeksplitter, Denver stoner metal act Sugar Skulls & Marigolds, along with fellow Denverites Parasitic Death and a debut performance by Dream Hearse.
It is a happy coincidence, then — and make no mistake, extreme music makes you happy, as proven by a recent University of Queensland study — that locals get a second helping of all things heavy a mere two weeks later.
June 17 and 18 bring the eighth annual Foothills GutFest to Sunshine Studios, a festival that promises to bring "pummeling death metal" from around the world to Colorado Springs.
Among the 31 bands participating are Colombian brutal death metal band Goretrade, Wisconsinites Putrid Pile, Italian death metal/grindcore act Exhumer, Peru-based metal band Masacre, Australians Odiusembowel, and many others such as Forced Asphyxiation, Limbsplitter, Vomit God and Hideous Rebirth. If you like that sort of thing, it's safe to say this is exactly the sort of thing you'll like.
Meanwhile, for those with tastes slightly less brutal, there's still plenty of music out there to explore this week:
Brooklyn-based "cosmic-rockers" Dreamers bring their infectious brand of indie rock to the Black Sheep on Wednesday, June 1, with California-based alternative act The Young Wild and Denver's The Midnight Club in support. Also on June 1, Denver-based electronic psychedelic outfit Inner Oceans play at Ivywild School, joined by fellow avant-pop Denverites DéCollage and local standouts Eros & The Eschaton.
Rounding out June 1, popular singer-songwriter Chauncy Crandall continues his post-MeadowGrass Music Festival homecoming with a show at Front Range Barbeque.
On June 2, the summer concert season rolls on at Red Rocks Amphitheatre with highly danceable Montreal electro-funk duo Chromeo (see interview, p. 36), joined by British electronic artist Jamie xx.
Meanwhile, if jazz is more your thing, Denver's contemporary jazz ensemble Dotsero plays Stargazers Theatre on June 4.
Also on June 4, FLAG — featuring four original members of the legendary first wave punk band Black Flag — hits Denver's Summit Music Hall, fresh off their appearance at the Punk Rock Bowling Music Festival.
Finally, Pueblo's Songbird Cellars hosts veteran Texas country singer and songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard for a show on June 4.
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