It’s embarrassing to admit, but last week, I discovered Moe’s.
Not the Moe’s Original BBQ in Boulder, or even the one on the Baker end of S. Broadway. For the first time in my two-and-a-half years in Colorado, I saw a show at the Moe’s next to the Gothic Theatre.
In my defense, I don’t have a car. Even if I did, there’s that whole not-drinking-and-driving thing. My bus ride from E. Colfax would be a long, multi-bus trip, and they don’t run so frequently in Englewood at 2 a.m. As for cabbing it — well, we don’t need to talk about how much money I make.
I’m iterating my excuses because I’ve decided they suck. Last weekend, Moe’s managed to book Speedy Ortiz. Not the hi-dive or Larimer Lounge. The barbeque joint in Englewood. And they had three excellent local acts opening: Safe Boating Is No Accident, I Sank Molly Brown and Deerpeople.
The crowd was decent, and more importantly, happy. Maybe it’s all the barbeque sauce, or that the bartender is the kind that remembers your drink after two rounds. (My pulled pork sandwich was pretty damn tasty and my whiskey pours hefty.) But mostly, I think the space feels good and the sound was impressive. This was the best I’ve been able to hear Speedy Ortiz’s Sadie Dupuis in the three times I’ve seen the band in a year, and that includes a South by Southwest set.
I’ve raved about Speedy Ortiz before. They’re consistently amusing in their between-song chatter, and those songs could blow you over. I Sank Molly Brown has been in our Second Story Garage, and they impressed me as always, too. (We’ve written about Safe Boating Is No Accident, but I missed them, sadly.)
Deerpeople was my big discovery for the night. It’s not often you see a rock band with a flute player. It wasn’t intrusive in the way where the band makes it a Thing. It’s just that sometimes there’s a flute in a song. It’s borderline-pop rock, with peppy choruses, but not over the top.
It’s a nice reminder of a couple things. The first is that even when you feel like you’ve seen every band in Denver, there’s one lurking and waiting to impress you. The second is that we should all get off our lazy asses for the more remote venues. The third is…
Wait, deep breath, everyone. The third is: Why can’t we do this in Boulder? The argument doesn’t need to be reiterated in detail, but it shouldn’t just go away because it’s been said before. Managers of bands that play places like Moe’s or the hi-dive or Larimer Lounge tell me they wish they could come to Boulder, but there’s nowhere to bring these rock bands.
Thanks for getting to that point with me. Feel free to ignore it, I guess, but go to Moe’s for a show when you can. It’ll be worth it.