What: Gramatik and Michal Menert
When: 9 p.m. Thursday
Where: Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., Boulder, 303-443-3399
While most musicians scroll through their iPods and browse music blogs for inspiration, Dennis J, better known as Gramatik, flips through the channels on his TV.
His mainstays are Comedy Central, AMC, HBO and Showtime, with favorite shows like “Breaking Bad,” “True Blood,” and “Boardwalk Empire.” But it’s the satirical and fake news kings on Comedy Central that really get him going.
“’The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’ — sometimes it inspires me to make music more than other music does,” he said. “Watching Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert doing their genius fucking thing, it was a huge inspiration for me. I consider them to be one of the last free voices of the new generation.”
That doesn’t mean his music sounds like a fake news theme song, (even though that stuff is so catchy the composers must be onto something) and there’s no overt political message. Gramatik said it’s more about the attitude – urging people “not to be puppets” and think for themselves.
“It’s not just about making music and partying. For me that’s secondary. I’m not impressed by all that any more,” he said. “I’m looking for something that matters in my life right now and something that makes a difference. And music can make a difference, but it all depends on how you put it out there.”
Gramatik just got back from a European tour that carried him through September and October, and now he’s touring the U.S. with Michal Menert. The pair trade off 30 minute sets throughout their shows, ending with a collaborative set.
“The first day it was totally improvised, the entire set,” Gramatik said. “Then we discovered what works and what not, and the second day we made some improvements. It came out pretty naturally.”
When he’s not performing, Gramatik is working on his next album, titled Never Been the Silent Type, which he expects to drop in April 2012. He wants it to be a “cohesive, outrageous picture” that blends a little bit of everything.
“It’s gonna be progressing the style I developed on No Shortcuts. A mixture of electro, hip hop dubstep, glitch,” he said. “I’m trying to make it something of my own signature sound. When I grew up my appetite got really fucking big, so I can’t do just hip hop anymore. It’s just not enough for me anymore. I’m fucking hungry.”