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Thu Aug 27 |
SAFE BOATING IS NO ACCIDENT
with BLANKET EMPIRE, GRASS
Thu Aug 27 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Trampled By Turtles (Red Rocks), Glass Animals, JR JR
Fri Aug 28 |
VIRETTA
with MEDIC, DAVID MURPHY
Fri Aug 28 |
A BENEFIT FOR THE ANIMAL DEBT PROJECT
with TONE OLIVER, GEO BROWN
Sat Aug 29 |
MYSTIC BRAVES
with EMERALD SIAM, NORMAL//EYES
Sun Aug 30 |
SUNDAY BBQ SERIES:
with BARBARA JEAN & MOLLY DEAN, PATRICK DETHLEFS, ANDY THOMAS (SOLO), ONE FLEW WEST (ACOUSTIC)
Mon Aug 31 |
FUNERAL IN FLAMES
with THE HEALZ, OUR SCARLET WINTER
Wed Sep 2 |
FUTURE CULTURE
with HYDRAFORM, TOO MANY HUMANS, COVERGEIST
Thu Sep 3 |
BROWNOUT (PRE-PHISH PARTY)
Thu Sep 3 |
SHANE HENDERSON (OF VALENCIA)
with DAN AID (OF WIREDOGS)
Thu Sep 3 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Passenger, Twin Shadow, JR JR
Fri Sep 4 |
UNTIL THE RIBBON BREAKS
with INSTANT EMPIRE, INPUT & BROKEN
Sat Sep 5 |
MITIS
with SUBTHEORY, PAWS
Sun Sep 6 |
SUNDAY BBQ SERIES: GONE WEST
with THE BELL HOURS, THE SAMUEL EDGAR BAND, CASEY SMITH, MIKE LAMITOLA, ROY CATLIN
Mon Sep 7 |
LIVE LIKE GLASS
with MY ASCENSION, REALITY AT IT'S FINEST
Wed Sep 9 |
ON AN ON
with ELIOT SUMNER, DOSH
Thu Sep 10 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Glass Animals, Delta Rae, JR JR
Thu Sep 10 |
SUGAR SKULLS & MARIGOLDS
with CULT OF THE LOST CAUSE, CHURCH FIRE
Fri Sep 11 |
RADKEY
with SLOW CAVES, LSD BAGS
Sat Sep 12 |
WAVE RACER
with SHAWN WASABI, PROPER MOTION
Sun Sep 13 |
SUNDAY BBQ SERIES: THE SKULL
with MASTER FEROCIOUS, ALTERITY, STILL VALLEY, WITCHFINGER
Mon Sep 14 |
BLACK PUSSY
with APE MACHINE, CLOUD CATCHER, SMOLDER & BURN
Wed Sep 16 |
THE COATHANGERS
with THE BIRTH DEFECTS
Thu Sep 17 |
THE LIGHTHOUSE AND THE WHALER
with BORN CAGES
Thu Sep 17 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Franz Ferdinand, Ms Mr, Youth Lagoon
Fri Sep 18 |
REDLANDS
with 888, NEVER LET THIS GO, DEFY YOU STARS, DALLAS GARCIA, KIMI MOST
Sun Sep 20 |
THUNDERCAT
Mon Sep 21 |
STEVE'N'SEAGULLS
Tue Sep 22 |
TYLER WARD
Thu Sep 24 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Saint Motel, Run The Jewels, Owl City
Fri Sep 25 |
A PLACE TO BURY STRANGERS
with GROOMS, EMERALD SIAM
Sat Sep 26 |
LARIMER BLOCK PARTY 2015:
with Plus some of Denver's best bands, DJs, and street artists!
Tue Sep 29 |
SHANNON AND THE CLAMS
Wed Sep 30 |
HAPPY HOUR BINGO
with Win tix to Shakey Graves (firday night), Misterwives, Youth Lagoon
Fri Oct 2 |
CRIZZLY & FRIENDS
with PRUITT
Sat Oct 3 |
ALGIERS
with BAMBARA
Tue Oct 6 |
MELANIE MARTINEZ
with HANDSOME GHOST
Wed Oct 7 |
MELANIE MARTINEZ
with HANDSOME GHOST
Thu Oct 8 |
DRENGE
with MADE VIOLENT
Fri Oct 9 |
JOEY CAPE
with LAURA MARDON, WALT HAMBURGER, BETTY AND THE BOY
Sat Oct 10 |
THE GIRAFFES
with ENGINE EAR, BRONZE
Sun Oct 11 |
BOB MOSES
Mon Oct 12 |
CAGE
Tue Oct 13 |
WILLIAM FITZSIMMONS
Wed Oct 14 |
MAUDLIN STRANGERS
Thu Oct 15 |
NOBUNNY
Fri Oct 16 |
THE SHEEPDOGS
with RADIO MOSCOW, RANCH GHOST
Sat Oct 17 |
MAX SCHNEIDER
with KENZIE NIMMO, CALL ME KARIZMA
Tue Oct 20 |
HINDS
with PUBLIC ACCESS T.V.
Thu Oct 22 |
MATT NATHANSON
Fri Oct 23 |
OUGHT
with ACCORDION CRIMES
Sat Oct 24 |
HOLYCHILD
Sun Oct 25 |
COLONY HOUSE
with ELLIOT MOSS
Mon Oct 26 |
KING DUDE
with DRAB MAJESTY
Thu Oct 29 |
HALLOWEEN EP RELEASE PARTY: ONE FLEW WEST
with RUMOURS FOLLOW, SLOW CAVES, THE HOST CLUB
Fri Oct 30 |
THE HOOD INTERNET
Sat Oct 31 |
SMALL BLACK
with PAINTED PALMS
Tue Nov 3 |
HERE WE GO MAGIC
with BIG THIEF
Sat Nov 7 |
THE GOOD LIFE
Fri Nov 13 |
LOW
with ANDY SHAUF
Wed Nov 18 |
REPTAR
Thu Nov 19 |
DAVID RAMIREZ
with LIZA ANNE
Sat Nov 21 |
DARWIN DEEZ
Thu Dec 3 |
HEALTH: Death Magic Tour 2015
Wed Dec 9 |
BEAT CONNECTION

Tue May 13 | Radio 1190 and Twist & Shout Presents | 16+

THE PAINS OF BEING PURE AT HEART  

FEAR OF MEN
ABLEBODY

Doors open at 8 PM   |   Show starts at 9 PM   |   $10 EARLY BIRD | $13 ADV | $15 DAY OF SHOW





Do The Pains of Being Pure At Heart belong? After garnering widespread acclaim from the likes of The New York Times, Pitchfork and NME to countless indiepop forums, blogs and even Live Journals for their out-of-nowhere s/t 2009 Slumberland debut, have The Pains made the kind of record that will matter to the kind of people to whom records still matter?

From the opening explosions of electric guitar on “Belong” (“We don’t”) and the sumptuously synthetic dance pop perfection of “The Body” to the prom-in-heaven chorus of “Even in Dreams” and the closing moments of the uncommonly sincere and affecting “Strange” (“…and dreams can still come true”) the answer is an unqualified, resounding (and damn good sounding)

“Yes.”

Having moved beyond mimicking, albeit exquisitely, their impressive record collections, this album is a celebration of the possibilities of pop from New York City’s pre-eminent indiepop believers. It is as much an affirmative answer to “can they” (rise above their influences? Capture the magic of their debut without repeating it? Use color on their album sleeves?) as it opens the door to the more difficult question of “how do they?” Or more precisely, how do they make such affecting, yet unaffected pop music? How do they sound at once confidently vulnerable and carelessly thoughtful? How does a band on Slumberland make a record with two of the most recognized producers in the world and come out the other end sounding even more like themselves than before? The dichotomies are daunting, but their resolution on Belong is nothing short of stunning.

Recorded with the production and mixing team of Flood (Depeche Mode, U2) and Alan Moulder (Smashing Pumpkins, Jesus and Mary Chain, Ride), Belong unleashes added power, while retaining all the sweet sweet melodies that still hit that pop spot.

“I definitely see this album as keeping with what we started doing at the beginning, only more,” says singer/guitarist Kip Berman. “More immediate, more noisy, more beautiful. We never stopped believing in noise and pop, but now we’ve pushed both further. Compared to the last record, It’s far more visceral, more vital, more of the body. It’s about feeling, not feelings.”

A continuation of what they started is a good thing, considering the loyal admirers and grass-roots support for what “could be the most promising indie pop group around” (Pitchfork). Never ones to get bogged down in self-seriousness, though, what we’ve got here is a band who tends to spend most interviews talking about how barely-remembered underground pop bands of the 80s and 90s are far superior to their own music, eats copious amounts of Haribo Gummi Candy and plays Boggle and Basketball on the road.

“The whole experience has just been a lot of fun for us – and a huge learning process,” says singer/keyboardist Peggy Wang, “We’ve really always gone more on intuition than technique. We’ve always followed our heart. My favorite bands are the ones where you can tell the people are true friends and would be hanging out together even without playing music – or at least that’s what we are and I wouldn’t want it any other way.”

One can certainly feel the intuitiveness and immediacy in each of the album’s ten tracks. But where past offerings might’ve cocooned front man Kip Berman’s woozy tales and beckoning high tenor in layers of gauze, Belong bathes them in a cathedral-like stained-glass light, revealing the beauty and pop perfection that once hid beneath fuzz and reverb. Radiant and heavenly, the band exults in the freedom and possibilities of pushing their sound beyond simple fuzz pop motifs and, liberated from the burden of those fuzzy memories, elevates their songwriting to new heights.

“Alan Moulder and Flood had a lot to do with helping us believe in ourselves, but they didn’t try to change the way we did things,” says Berman. “They just helped us focus on the things that made us ‘us,’ and allowed us to go all-in on the things we loved and strip away the things we didn’t. It was an amazingly validating experience to even get a chance to work with them, since they came into this because they saw something in our music, not because we were some kind of fat paycheck or will win them a Grammy. Perhaps not, but The Pains of Being Pure at Heart have come a long way since their beginnings as drum-machine equipped neophytes playing a legendary 5 song, ten-minute set at Peggy’s birthday party in March of 2007.

Through a self-released EP in 2007 and a series of eagerly-received singles like 2008’s “Everything With You” and “Kurt Cobain’s Cardigan” the band developed an intensely loyal underground following. Upon release of their self-titled debut album in 2009, that acclaim extended to well-respected cultural tastemakers like The New York Times (“sensitive and sublime, Best of 2009) Pitchfork (Best New Music, Best of 2009) Stereogum (“Addictive pop gold” Best of 2009) and The NME (“pure indiepop to hold close to your heart,” Best of 2009).

Looking forward, Spin chose Belong as one of the upcoming “winter albums that matter most”, and Pitchfork gave the single “Heart in Your Heartbreak “Best New Music, stating “It’s immediately appealing in the same way their debut was.”

“At first, it kind of surprised me that anyone would really take notice at all,” recalls Berman. “We’re an indiepop band and so many of our heroes were pretty much ignored beyond really obsessive music nerds – people like us. So I never expected much more than about maybe 50 people (parents not included) to like us – but hopefully those people would like us a lot. At some point, it occurred to me that ‘hey, we’re not hitting a wall here, we’re actually doing things right and people that might not care about out of print Rocketship singles or Sonic Youth b-sides actually like this as pop music – which to me is even more cool. We’re always eager to tell people about bands that are way better than us and educate younger people about all the cool, under-appreciated music out there.”

Belong’s strength is the quality of the songwriting and each songs ability to sound distinct from one another while still holding together as a unified record from start to finish. Some, like the fuzz-mad “Heaven’s Gonna Happen Now,” “Girl of 1,000 Dreams” and statuesque “Too Tough” wouldn’t sound out of place on their first LP, taking their cues from Berman’s plaintive voice and liberal use of fuzz guitar. Others, like “The Body” and “My Terrible Friend” derive their power from drummer Kurt Feldman’s pulsing rhythms and Peggy Wang’s more pronounced keyboard lines – a winning development that helps push the band beyond their comfort zones to great effect.

One place they never deviate is in their connection with their fans. Like them, The Pains have an idealism that stems from a nearly unhealthy devotion to pop music. Talking to the members one needs to pull out their band-to-conversation calculator, as they are likely to go off about bands they love – from The Pastels, The Promise Ring and Black Tambourine to Sonic Youth, Smashing Pumpkins and O.M.D.

“The whole idea of the album, for me, is about what it’s like to not belong,” says Berman. In part it’s like our band – we have all these amazing opportunities, but I feel constantly out of place. Not ungrateful – but like, undeserving. On the other side it’s the idea of not feeling a sense of belonging individually and how it’s so great to be able to find someone else who doesn’t belong so you can not belong together. That’s what this band has always been about – being on the outside looking in. We somehow snuck our way into the conversation of ‘real bands’ even though I still think don’t really belong.”

Berman might want to rethink that statement — with Belong, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart have created a piece of sonic bliss that fits – for the moment, and for the long-run.

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