Steal This Track: c.db.sn and Calder's Revolvers - Reverb

Steal This Track: c.db.sn and Calder’s Revolvers

Chase Dobson is Denver-based experimental electronic act c.db.sn. Photo by Optimystic Arts.

Chase Dobson is Denver-based experimental electronic act c.db.sn. Photo by Optimystic Arts.


The new year is kicking off with a bang in the Colorado music community, with tons of high quality, original music already hitting the streets and the web. And lest anyone is still proceeding under the misconception that there’s such a thing as the “Denver sound,” this week’s Steal This Track brings you new music from two acts that couldn’t be more different. Read on to steal experimental electronic music from c.db.sn and dirty blues rock from Calder’s Revolvers. Never mind going to 11 — these bad boys go to 2012.

Chase Dobson, a.k.a. c.db.sn, started making music with guitars, synthesizer, samplers and a four-track recorder when he was just 14 years old. In 2006, he began to really focus on creating the original experimental electronic music that he would debut on his first full-length, “Into the Deep,” in 2008. Since then, Dobson has distinguished himself — as a DJ who helped anchor the wildly successful Lipgloss for several months, as a composer and producer who won accolades from the likes of notable electronic publication XLR8R, as a remixer (his take on Plastic Sound Supply), and as a backline audio engineer and Ableton wiz (his work supporting superstars Mike Posner and Dia Frampton of Meg & Dia will keep him touring the world for the next several months).

After all that, it’s a delight to hear c.db.sn stretching out for his second full-length album. “… At the End of It All,” released last month on Chicago electronic label Tympanik Audio, finds Dobson creating dense, textured sonics, rich in aural imagery. While “ambient” is likely to be the first adjective that jumps to mind, Dobson’s love of glitch hop, techno and bass music adds tension and drama that keeps the tracks far from the yawns that that adjective evokes. It’s a dynamic, captivating listen that has more in common with Tangerine Dream than with Skrillex. c.db.sn might surprise those who think contemporary electronic music is nothing but noise. Steal “A Silent Sea” for a teaser of what’s to come. Then go directly to the Tympanik Audio Bandcamp site to download the whole album for yourself.

Calder's Revolvers brings members of the Archive and We Are! We Are! together for some dirty blues rock. Photo courtesy of the band.

Calder's Revolvers brings members of the Archive and We Are! We Are! together for some dirty blues rock. Photo courtesy of the band.


And now, as the Monty Python boys used to say, for something completely different. It’s been nearly a year since we heard from grimy blues merchants in Calder’s Revolvers, but the quartet is back, releasing its second EP tomorrow night at the Larimer Lounge. It’s a pleasure to hear that the quartet of Andy Schneider and Brad Johnson (former members of the Archive), Sam Gault (formerly of We Are! We Are!) and Cole Strain hasn’t strayed too far from its greasy beginnings.

That’s not to say that “Black Bloc” doesn’t show some artistic growth from the band. In fact, there’s something in the foursome’s blend of gutter blues, garage rock and punk that sounds a little bit different this time out. The four tracks on the new EP (the band promises a full-length album is forthcoming) are somehow more refined, sophisticated and timeless than those on the first record, while still retaining the band’s signature filthiness. At the same time, the added sophistication takes away a little of the raw immediacy that made the band’s earlier recording so delightfully alarming. It’s something akin to comparing Mudhoney’s 21st century releases to its ’90s heyday. Still, the EP’s title track proves that this outfit knows how to get down and dirty. Steal “Black Bloc” and judge for yourself, then make sure you get over to the Larimer Lounge on Friday night to get a copy of the EP. The Gromet, the Uncertain Sea and the Music Band will warm things up, starting at 9 p.m. Tickets are a mere $8.

Please note that downloads offered via Steal This Track are intended to whet your appetite, and are NOT CD-quality recordings. If you want those, please support the artists by buying their music and/or seeing them live.

If you’re a band or musician ready to expose your fresh sounds to the readers of Reverb, email your tracks — along with any interesting facts about them, as well as a photo or album art — to Eryc Eyl for consideration.

Eryc Eyl is a veteran music journalist, critic and Colorado native who has been neck-deep in local music for many years. Check out Steal This Track for local music you can HEAR, and the Mile High Makeout for stories about Denver musicians doing extraordinary things. Against his mother’s advice, Eryc has also been known to tweet. You can also follow Steal This Track on Twitter. Sorry, Mom.

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  • boyhollow

    Chase actually helmed Lipgloss with me for over a year.  He was a great part of the party and I’d like him to get all the credit that is due him for that.  Just an addendum.