King Cardinal with Porlolo and Whippoorwill
A holiday show. Wear your best ugly sweaters and prepare to be saturated in all the good feels. We'll be keeping it toasty inside the Artery with plenty of good will and cheer.
Doors 7 PM | Show 8 PM
All Ages | $10 in advance| $15 Day of Show
I moved to Denver on a whim," says King Cardinal founder Brennan Mackey. "I'd been living in Chicago, working a finance job that I didn't love, and I knew exactly what the rest of my life would look like if I stayed there. I decided I wanted to throw everything up in the air and see where it landed."
It makes sense, then, that the cover of King Cardinal's stellar debut album, 'Great Lakes,' depicts a man catapulting himself headlong into the unknown, trading safety and security for adventure and excitement as he leaps over a protective railing. If the record is any indication, Mackey's own bold leaps have paid off in spades. Pushing raw roots rock into lush, sonically daring territory with hints of cosmic country and delicate folk, 'Great Lakes' showcases the five-piece group's exceptional musicianship and the powerful emotional depth of the vocal interplay between Mackey and fellow singer Texanna Dennie.
In its earliest form, though, King Cardinal was a far lonelier enterprise. Ever a self-starter, Mackey adopted the King Cardinal moniker to record his self-titled first EP as a mostly-solo project, and after relocating to Denver, built up a fanbase using Reddit to crowdsource a network of house concerts.
"I didn't know a lot of people at first and it was difficult trying to put together a band, so I decided I would just do it on my own," he explains. "Once I made that decision, everything started to click."
“Masterful at containing the true dynamic nature of emotions. At once, sad and joyful, yearning and fulfilled. Which element stands out strongest depends on your mood. This is beautiful, masterfully crafted, skillfully performed music..” HEY REVERB
Staci Foster, Tobias Bank (formerly of Von Stomper), and Alysia Kraft (Patti Fiasco) are on the same wavelength of intentionality. Catharsis is the point of the songs but the tools to get there vary. With Bank on drums, Foster swapping between guitar, harmonica, and banjo, and Kraft playing electric guitar, they’re in their element with raw, authentic, stripped-down performances that nod to icons Neil Young and Lucinda Williams. There is spirituality steeped in the country backdrops they write from and a deep reverence for the landscapes that raised them. A balance of grace and grit is written as much into their worldview as their songs.
Recorded at GPM Studio in Fort Collins and co-produced by Tallgrass, their debut album contains six- stick-to-heart tracks that earned them 2016 nominations for Wyoming Public Radio and the Colorado Playlists’ Best Albums of the Year. Culture Trip named them to the female edition of 50 Musicians You Need to Know from Each State. In their first ten months as a band, they’ve shared stages with Lydia Loveless, Colin Hay, and Old Crow Medicine Show, and will perform at this year’s Treefort Music Festival.
Porlolo is a true labor of love, with good friends finding peace and party times through musical connection. Formed in Denver in 2002 by the eccentric and prolific Erin Roberts, Porlolo has been a highly collaborative project. Roberts—a self-defined sister, swimmer and stunt artist—is a powerful songwriting force, cranking out grungy, sometimes twangy, often pure pop hits. Over her last 15 years of deliberate wandering through Denver, Gunnison, Eugene and most recently Fort Collins, Roberts draws inspiration from the dramatic landscapes and even more dramatic personalities.
Porlolo releases Awards on April 27, produced and engineered by James Barone (Beach House). Players include Anna Morsett (The Still Tide, Brent Cowles), Jake Miller (Esmé Patterson, The Still Tide, Brent Cowles), Tom Mohr, James Barone (Beach House), and Pat Meese (Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats).
Awards showcases Roberts’ thoughtful and playful songwriting, fully supported by the talent of her influential friends and bandmates. Says Roberts of her current lineup, “Porlolo has been an incredibly powerful force in my own life, providing equal amounts of sanity and absurdity, keeping it weird when life gets tedious, heavy and too adult.”
Porlolo discography includes What Would This Be For (2002), Storm and Season (2004), Meadows (2006), Pony Trekk (split EP with Kate Magnus, 2009). In December of 2014, Porlolo released Everything, Barely, a three-song EP produced and recorded by James Barone (Beach House). Erin Roberts also released Fill Your Lungs (2012) with the Denver-based band Ending People.