Air Dubai signed to Hopeless Records - Reverb

Air Dubai signed to Hopeless Records

Air Dubai

Air Dubai, a Denver hip hop group, has been signed to Hopeless Records. Photo by Luca Venter.

And the steady stream of Denver acts attaching themselves to labels – both major and independent – continues.

Air Dubai has signed to Hopeless Records, the band told Reverb this week.

Hopeless is home to pop-punk acts All Time Low, Silverstein, Yellowcard and others – making Air Dubai’s horn-infused brand of hip-hop something of an anomaly on the label.

“It’s a little more post-punk than us, but it’s unique to be the hip-hop band on their label,” said Air Dubai keys player Michael Ray, who noted that Hopeless is distributed by EMI.

The band is beyond psyched with the signing – which includes three records and allows them to keep the large majority of revenues from touring and merchandise, Ray said.

“We did a west coast run in San Diego and Los Angeles, and we had a bunch of industry people out at the L.A. show, and people started freaking out about it,” Ray said. “It’s cliché to say this, but we went to L.A., played a show and got signed. It was our first show out there, too.”

Oddly, Hopeless wasn’t even at that showcase, which brings up the strangest aspect about the deal:

Air Dubai is a band that needs to be seen live. But Hopeless still hasn’t seen Air Dubai live.

“We had a couple people out from Atlantic and Mercury at the show – we were in talks with Mercury as well,” he said. “We had a couple managers and agents out at the show. But yeah, Hopeless wasn’t even there. It was a word of mouth thing, them hearing about us. They still haven’t even seen us play.”

If the label wants to fly to Denver this weekend, Air Dubai is headlining the Ogden Theatre on Saturday – with old-schooler Tone Loc opening the gig.

The band intended to release its “Be Calm” full-length in November, but then Hopeless came calling. Now the label will release the record – as it was first created by the band – in March or April, Ray said.

What next? Ray said there are plans for South by Southwest showcases in March and hopes for potential Coachella afterparties in April – not to mention an unconfirmed but much-desired Warped Tour run this summer.

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Ricardo Baca is the founder and executive editor of Reverb, the co-founder of The UMS and an award-winning critic and editor at The Denver Post.

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