On the Goe: Don’t miss great local shows before Country Jam

Heading into June, the talk of the music scene is understandably centered around Major Mortgage Country Jam USA. With that said, there are a number of strong shows leading up to the festival not to be overlooked, many featuring the area’s best bands.

Starting Friday night, May 30, with the double bill of Shotgun Hodown and Dead Orchids at Sabrosa, there is a little bit of something for everyone coming up in the next couple of weeks.

Let’s begin with Friday night’s lineup. Have you seen or heard Dead Orchids play?

Hailing from Denver, Dead Orchids are a mixed bag of rock ‘n’ roll influences. Think Black Angels with a pipe organ or Depeche Mode with heavier bass lines, and you’ll begin to understand what the band sounds like.

As the name suggests, they prefer the darker side of rock, playing a heavy blues, psych and soul rock mix that pairs well with the music of Shotgun Hodown.

Speaking of Shotgun Hodown, Rob “Zombie” Hodown and his crew of necromancers continue to solidify their spot as one of Grand Junction’s best and favorite bands. If you haven’t seen them play, now is the time.

Their show is a cirque du freak performance washed in 1950’s nuclear radiation. It’s entertaining to say the least.

If psyche out rock-a-billy isn’t your thing, then check out Ground Score Saturday night, May 31, at Palisade Brewery’s fourth anniversary party. Aside from fuelling bands with beer since 2010, the Palisade Brewery has been a good friend to the local music scene, hosting a number of live shows and sponsoring numerous events over the years.

Ground Score, a nice Colorado bluegrass four-piece outfit, is a band tailor-made for the anniversary event. Hanging out on the brewery patio at the foot of Grand Mesa, with fruit orchards on the horizon while Ground Source picks away sounds is a perfect encapsulated slice of Americana.

If that is your favorite style of music, then you must see SHEL, a folk group of four sisters from Fort Collins.

Playing at the Cavalcade on Wednesday, June 4, SHEL is an extremely close-knit group of talented musicians poised beyond their years. The group’s vocal harmonies immediately jump out at you when listening to their music. Polished, strong and technically impressive, SHEL will sound absolutely amazing in Cavalcade’s intimate setting.

Looking further into June, these shows should also be on your calendar:

On Saturday, June 7, Deerpeople returns to Grand Junction, playing a much needed indie rock show at Barons. You may remember the Stillwater, Oklahoma, crew from its show nearly a year ago at the KAFM Radio Room.

Since that show, Deerpeople has continued to gain a steady following and even managed to snag an opening slot for Vampire Weekend.

Just a couple days later on Monday, June 9, Marriage & Cancer makes a stop for Gutter Surfer Monday at Sabrosa with support from local duo Wavebaby.

Marriage & Cancer has a strong West Coast, indie punk vibe and rolls into town touring for its fifth album, “Demonstrations Tour Tape.” The seven-song album will sound great to all the skate-kids who grew up listening to everything from Black Sabbath to the Minute Men and Husker Du.

Finally, don’t miss Flashbulb Fires, Rossonian and the return of local favorites Dreamboat at the Radio Room on Thursday, June 12.

Flashbulb Fires is another major coup for KAFM. This up-and-coming Denver band has supported Imagine Dragons, has been invited to perform at both South By Southwest and the CMJ Music Marathon, and headlined a Film on the Rocks night at Red Rocks Amphitheatre.

June is looking like a great month for music, so get out there and catch a show.

Read more from David Goe at the Music on the Goe blog at GJSentinel.com. Goe is a programmer for KAFM 88.1 Community Radio. His show airs at 9 p.m. the first Friday and first Saturday of each month. You can email Goe at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or follow him on Twitter at @David_Goe.


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