The Velveteers electrify the local music scene at the Bluebird

Local alternative rock band the Velveteers opened their two-night hometown headliner tour with a sold-out show at Denver’s Bluebird Theater on January 20.


“The Velveteers, sold-out in Denver and at the subsequent Boulder show, undoubtedly solidified their local legacy.” Photograph by Ella Wehrlen.

Laura Andrews

The Boulder-bred alternative rock act performed an action-packed two-night hometown tour on Jan. 20 and 21 that showcased local bands as opening acts. The Velveteers, sold-out in Denver and at the subsequent Boulder show, undoubtedly solidified their local legacy, dragging them from the opening-act shadow of other mainstream modern rock bands and into the spotlight. The Velveteers’ electrifying stage presence encapsulated the audience at both shows with an elevated performance of songs from their debut album.

The Denver-based alternative act Pink Lady Monster opened Friday night’s show, followed by the Latin-influenced power pop/garage rock band the Mañanas. Pink Lady Monster began the show with a refined departure from their recorded catalog. Emerging from lead singer Simone’s raw dream-pop demos, their setlist showcased a marked evolution into a more complex soundscape. The Mañanas’ playful, groovy performance leaned heavily into their multicultural Latin roots. Led by singer and guitarist Brandon Unpingco and drummer/producer Danny Pauta, the Mañanas’ playful set featured a crowd-pleasing Spanish twist on their most popular song, “Don’t Think Your Love Has Given Up.”


“The piercing vocals fused with the band’s primal, fuzzy sound, captivating the audience and sending waves of energy through the crowd.” Photograph by Marie Pohl.

Fueled by the crowd’s anticipation, the volume turned up to 11 the moment the Velveteers hit the stage with their powerful, loud sound reverberating through the Bluebird Theater kicking off with the energetic song “Motel #27” from their debut album, “Nightmare Daydream.” After only a single song, the crowd was ignited into a mosh pit, fueled by the powerful, raw energy of the thundering drums. The piercing vocals fused with the band’s primal, fuzzy sound, captivating the audience and sending waves of energy through the crowd.

The Velveteers kept the audience glued to the stage at every turn of their dynamic setlist – from an inciting and electrifying version of the song “Choking” to stripped-back, dreamy tracks, including their newest single, “See Me.”

Each band member showcased a unique, captivating stage presence and control unmatched in the modern rock scene. The lead singer joined the swirling mosh pit of pumped-up fans twice on Friday’s show and took a ride on an audience member’s shoulders on Saturday. The band electrified the crowd with their drum solo on the track “Beauty Queens,” while the guitarist stole the spotlight for the popular track “Charmer and the Snake.” One audience member at the Bluebird Theater laughed during a break between songs, saying, “She has them [the audience] in the palm of her hand.”

The Velveteers set concluded with an encore of “Dark Horse” and the raucous 2019 track “Death Hex,” which electrified the crowd and sent them jumping and head-banging along to every word. Only a single question followed the most devoted fans after the band cleared the stage on Friday night. As the buzzing crowd emptied onto the chilled midnight street, a silver-haired man with blue sparkles dripping from his eyes looked around and grinned, “Who’s ready for tomorrow at the Fox?”

“Only a single question after the band cleared the stage on Friday Night… ‘Who’s ready for tomorrow at the Fox?'” Photograph by Ella Wehrlen.

Saturday’s show at the Fox Theater delivered the same electrifying energy as Friday night, with a unique sentimentality from the band and dedicated fans alike. Supported by Fort Collins rock band the Nova Kicks and Denver’s Shady Oaks, a new slate of opening acts offered a refreshing and unique twist on the previous show.

Blues-heavy psychedelic rock band Shady Oaks kicked off Saturday evening with a rugged and energetic set featuring songs from their 2022 release “MAD.” The five-piece band led by singer-songwriter Ty Gallaway lent a mischievous energy to the evening, complete with antics including a starburst-filled ukulele smashed onstage and flung to the audience.

Fort Collins’ own distorted wave of hard-rock, the Nova Kicks, followed up Shady Oaks set and delivered an equally head-banging and boisterous performance. Dedicated fans of the punk and rock-and-roll-inspired group clamored to catch favorite songs from their new debut album “Feature Creatures” and the quintessential track, “Don’t Break My Head.”

Saturday’s show reverberated the same catalyzing and energizing energy as Friday evening. Though the two setlists were equally matched in structure and enthusiasm, Saturday’s hometown set in Boulder held a clear sentimentality for the band. Long-time fans of the band yearned for deep cuts from their old discography unknown to most.

“I’ve been to a lot of shows. I have never seen a mosh pit form that quickly,” KCSU’s local music director Marie Pohl remarked on Saturday’s Boulder show long after the rose-colored glasses of post-concert woes dissipated. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”

With The Velveteers’ unique ability to engage an audience and deliver a sonically elevated performance of their recorded catalog, the Colorado-born modern rock band is on a clear path to captivate listeners on a national scale.

Article by Laura Andrews. More information on the Velveteers can be found on their website.