Saturday, March 31, 2007

Apples in Stereo

The Apples in Stereo play tomorrow, 4/1, at the Bluebird

snow report

Went to Keystone yesterday after that snowstorm Wednesday, and the snow was great. Not spring skiing at all. Lots of powder in the trees, and the snow on the front part of the mountain was decent too. Mozart was crowded but Prospector -- those runs were winter conditions! It was warm, so some runs in the sun started getting icy late in the day, but some of the blacks like Wildfire were terrific.

Monday, March 26, 2007


I got to check out Fruition, the upscale neighborhood joint at 6th and Lafayette, and mmm, it was good. (Upscale as in fancy food and a wine crowd, "neighborhood joint" as in you can wear jeans -- you know, the nice pair, with a nice top). One of my friends who ate there a few weeks ago is convinced it will give some of the pricier fine dining places in town some firm competition, and I think so too. My dining buddy and I got out of there for $50 apiece and really full stomachs, plus a doggy bag, last weekend.

Chef Alex Seidel was once chef d’ cuisine at Sweet Basil in Vail and executive chef at Mizuna. People in kitchens in Denver credit Alex w/ making Mizuna what it was. He brings his rich, simple flavors over to Fruition, and dishes are more affordable here.

Last weekend, we started off with seared yellowfin tuna with white bean vinaigrette, which was lovely because I love raw tuna but even better was the braised rabbit chasseur w/ carmelized onions, grilled batard and mushroom pan jus. Spooned some of the rabbit stew onto the crispy bread. yum.

I got the crock pot veal cheeks (sooo tender) served w/ crispy fontina polenta. My friend got the duck breast served on top of carnoroli risotto w/ arugula, smoked duck prosciutto and red marmalade. I'm used to eating Peking duck, served cooked fully through, so I appreciated when our server James checked whether it was all right for the duck to be prepared medium rare (which it was, but James still gets points for asking). Excellent taste. That James, by the way. Hopefully I'm remembering his name right. He gave me a hard time for not ordering any wine or liquor w/ dinner and sent over an eensy teensy weensy tequila shot. ha!

My friend has eaten at Fruition before and says the vegetarian dish (it changes) is solid, and has tried the cider-brined pork shoulder confit w/ butternut squash gnocchi and recommends it. He says Alex also is very picky when it comes to selecting fish, so any of those dishes also are a good bet.

For dessert, we went w/ the banana pecan bread pudding w/ caramel sauce and rum raisin ice cream. My friend likes the bread pudding at Cucina Colore better (it's mighty fine) and would have preferred it be moister. I didn't mind that the top was more toasted and the bottom moist.

Fruition, after a rocky start w/ desserts, is now enjoying the services of the former pastry chef at Frasca in Boulder. She's tweaking the dessert menu she inherited. Alex says vanilla bean pudding is the most popular dessert. I wonder if The Denver Post review had anything to do with it.

The menu changes seasonally, so there will be more to try soon

IF you have eaten at Fruition, please leave a comment. I'm curious to hear what other people think

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Photo Atlas -- win FREE tickets! win the album!

March 24 @ the Hi-Dive
with Machine Gun Blues, Little Brazil, Ad Astra As Perata

Enter to win a copy of The Photo Atlas’ new record No, Not Me, Never and two tickets to the show!

It's very, very simple. All you have to do is e-mail us at by 11:59 p.m. Friday. We'll pick a winner at random.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Forecast

3/22 :: The Thermals and Hot IQs at the Hi-Dive

3/23 :: Born in the Flood and Conner! w/ Monofog at the Oriental Theater

3/25 :: second day of tryouts this weekend for the Capitol Hill People's Fair at Benders Tavern. FREE. Gubment Cheese is on at 2 p.m.

3/30 :: Page France with the Headlights at the Hi-Dive

4/17 :: The Little Ones at the Larimer Lounge !!!! Sure it's a school night but so WHAT

Talk Derby to Me

If you've followed roller derby in Denver, you know the saga of the Rocky Mountain Rollergirls and the subsequent birth of the Denver Roller Dolls. (Read about some of the drama here:::). Now it's all on film. Frank X. Hogan's film "Talk Derby to Me" shows April 4 at the Gothic.

In Frank's own words: "Talk Derby To Me" features wicked fast skating, backroom brawling, and a roll-the-dice attitude that leads 15 women to risk everything for the chance to create something invaluable, a place where they can truly be themselves.

Tix are $10 in advance or $14 at the door. Frank gamely agreed to talk with us about the film.

Check out the Q&A!

What angle did you decide to take with your documentary?
Frank: I like character driven stories and was immediately drawn to Rockett, Brenda Scarr, Kitty Kaos, Ankle Bitin' Annie and Dita Destroyer -- the superstar, the klutz, artist, wild one, the college student. Even though the original group split, and that resulted in much drama, I wanted to keep the personal stories in focus throughout.

Any favorite moments that you weren't able to get into the final film?
I wasn't able to get Dita's tatto session into the doc. She has two amazing tattoos, flying roller skates on each hip, and I shot when she was getting them colored in, very interesting, but ultimately left out of the story.

Have any of the skaters seen the movie yet?
None of skaters have seen the entire doc. Some of them have seen parts of it, early versions, and they always comment on how much the skating has improved and strategy of the game has evolved.

You also did a movie on women's soccer -- Is there anything particular about female athletes that you think makes their stories more interesting to you?
I have three very athletic daughters and have watched hours and hours of them playing soccer, basketball, softball etc. When I did "Uncommon Goals," the story of the U.S. Women's Soccer Team's quest to win the gold medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, I was conscious of there not being many female role models in sports and thought my involvement would be a good thing for my family. Women sports stories can be just as inspiring as men's. There just aren't that many of them. Yet. Brenda Scarr's story is pretty amazing. She can't even stand up on roller skates when she starts. You think, there's no way, no matter how long she practices that this woman is ever going to be a derby girl.

What kind of work over the past two years did it take to get the film made?
I shot practices, bouts, meetings, dinners, skating on the streets downtown. About 70 hours of footage for a 54-minute doc. But I also had Rockett shooting on roller skates, Heather Domko from Channel 12 did a great job shooting inside the locker rooms. Roll O Rama, where the derby girls originally practiced, had carpet with so many cokes and slurpees spilled on it over the years that your feet kinda stuck when you walked around outside of the rink. The derby girls got lots of attention from Denver's media when they were starting out so they were used to having cameras around.

How supportive is the Denver area in general for filmmakers?
Denver has a lot of talent, editors, shooters, sound, makeup, etc. And CU's got a very good filmmaking program. So, it's a very positive atmosphere, dynamic community.

Anything else you'd like to add?
The Denver Roller Dolls are a class act. They couldn't have been more cooperative.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

SXSW! ... and online radio

If you can't be in Austin for South by Southwest, the fine folks at NPR and have your back. is streaming and archiving tons of stuff, including a session with The Little Ones (Sunday's Best fans take note). The Little Ones also are playing tomorrow 3/16 with The Broken West (formerly The Brokedown) and others at the Everybody Needs a Nurse party at Emo's Annex, starting at 3 p.m. CDT. Free beer.

Our friends at Little Radio make it like you're almost in Austin as well with live music streams. Free beer and bloodys at 3 days of parties at Red Eyed Fly

NPR also is broadcasting endless amounts live, including Apples in Stereo TONIGHT (3/15)!

Illinois is one busy band at SXSW, so really there's no excuse for seeing them at least once. The new 7-song EP "What the Hell do I know" is out, in all its melodic indie-rock glory on Ace Fu Records. It's a perfect mix of cohesiveness to get an idea of the band's sound while sounding plenty different from song to song.
1. Alone Again :: Chris Archibald sings like he's phoning it in _ no, literally. The wistful lyrics hit your ear like he's talking with you via Ma Bell.
2. Nosebleed :: Banjo to open! You'll hear more throughout the EP
3. What Can I Do For You :: That perfect blend of sadness + hopefulness of letting someone go. Lots of keys on this one
4. One on One :: Get a preview of the chorus from the guitars before the vocals give it to you
5. Screendoor :: aah, backyard BBQs, summer drives away from the city, sweater-day, skiing at A-Basin in april come to mind. Upbeat, poppy, "ooh-OOH"s and Monkees type background vocals
6. Headphones :: Buzzy cymbals get quiet for more of those Ma Bell vocals. "I feel so lonely when I talk, I just put the headphones on. Yeah"
7. Bad Day :: The drums challenge you not to blast this while you're stuck at that stop light that won't turn green. It's kinda like blues lyrics delivered by a spitter who's a record store clerk backed by an indie rock band.
Illinois is from Bucks County, Pa. They're touring this spring. Maybe they'll get to Denver soon.

As you might have heard, online radio might get stomped by the Copyright Royalty Board's plan to raise royalty rates that Internet stations have to pay for playing music. Instead of charging a percentage of revenue, the board is looking to have stations like KEXP pay 8 cents per song for each song played last year, then 11 cents/song in 07, and 19 cents in 2010. Supporters argue that online radio is becoming a sub for buying albums, but come on. Without WOXY, KEXP, Little Radio and others, how many people would even find out about some of these bands? It can still be appealed.

Here's the statement from KCRW GM Ruth Seymour:

“The CRB decision is truly egregious in that it treats successful non-commercial online music webcasters as if they were commercial stations. We support NPR’s plans for a reconsideration of the CRB decision.

“KCRW believes that the record companies and artists whose music we champion deserve fair recompense. We trust that the music industry is open to good-faith negotiations.

“KCRW has promoted many independent artists and introduced new musicians on-air and online. The station has also benefited greatly from their work. We therefore support reasonable royalty payments that rightly reward both artists and labels and hope that we will be able to reach an accommodation for public stations online and for other non-commercial webcasters, as well.

“Many of KCRW’s most devoted subscribers and supporters are people who work in the entertainment industry. We understand their concern for intellectual property rights in the new digital media. Many federal agencies recognize the difference between for-profit and non-profit businesses – including the IRS, the FCC and the US Congress. And we believe the CRB must honor that distinction.”

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Paolo Nutini

Paolo Nutini stopped by Twist & Shout for a free preview of his show at the Ogden last night. The kid's only 20 but sounds like he's got a couple more decades of sucking down ciggies in him. Twist & Shout pushed aside a couple racks of records to make room for fans, who patiently waited for Paolo and the band (their van was late). Things started with "Alloway Grove." He played his radio-friendly single "New Shoes" of course. He also played a livelier, more upbeat version of the ballad "Rewind," which was great and danceable. They also played "Jenny Don't Be Hasty." Then Paolo stuck around to sign stuff while the rest of the band wandered around. A video camera crew recorded it all, so keep an eye out for yourself. Anyway, Paolo Nutini is blowing up FAST: sold out shows in the UK and it's getting there in the states, so watch him while he's still doing these free record-shop gigs on the side and you can still buy tickets to his shows.