Hi-Dive One and Ten Year Anniversary brings Monofog, Red Cloud reunions - Reverb

Hi-Dive owner Josh Terry talks Monofog, Red Cloud, Machine Gun Blues reunions at One and Ten Year Anniversary

The holidays are typically a time for reminiscing and being with loved ones, so it makes sense that beloved Denver rock club the Hi-Dive will throw a big throwback of a bash in mid-November.

The weekend-long One and Ten Year Anniversary party on Nov. 15-17 will celebrate a couple landmarks at the South Broadway club – and they will be marked with a night of important reunion concerts.

“Yeah, we’re calling the party the One and Ten Year Anniversary because it is the 10 year of Hi-Dive being open, and we (Matty Clark and I) took over the venue a year ago,” said Hi-Dive owner and local musician Josh Terry.

The reunions will take local music fans back five or ten years. Remember when Hayley Helmericks and Doug Spencer spent their nights on stage as Monofog? Yes, this is before the couple started the more intricate Snake Rattle Rattle Snake. Before Andrew Warner joined Snake Rattle Rattle Snake he was a member of the distinctively Denver outfit Red Cloud.

Monofog, Red Cloud and others (including Terry’s old band Machine Gun Blues, a group best known for its furious punk ethos as much as its bad-boy hysterics) will play the anniversary gig Nov. 15. The next two nights will be filled with bands made up of staff and friends, including Terry’s own Zebroids, Ark Life (which features the talents of Hi-Dive talent buyer Ben Desoto) and L.A.’s Empty Palace, which includes former Machine Gun Blueser Jason Walker.

We caught up with Terry to chat about the upcoming weekend of love, his year spent running a rock club and the last time we saw him at The UMS.

Q: Last time I saw you, Josh, you were headlining the Hi-Dive with Zebroids at this year’s UMS. How was this year’s festival for you and the club?

A: Yeah, that Zebroids show at UMS was a lot of fun. My cousin Aaron Collins’s band, A Tom Collins, played across the street from Hi-Dive at the 3 Kings at midnight, and we played at Hi-Dive at 1 a.m., and they did a march across the street with fireworks to come over to see our set, get on stage with us and party. The show ended up being rad. Playing in Zboyz is always fun, and it’s cool being in a band that puts fun first. UMS is my favorite weekend of the year. I am pretty sure that I’ve played in a band that played UMS every year except the 7th year, when I moved to Portland. It’s always been the best weekend for music in Denver since the beginning. This year’s festival was amazing. I got to see one of my favorite bands of all time, Mudhoney, along with other awesome bands like Bleached, Born in the Flood, the Fresh & Onlys and Residual Kid. It was an extremely busy weekend for the club and a great thing for the Baker neighborhood. Really I don’t think we (Hi-Dive, Baker and Denver) could ask for a better weekend.

Q: When exactly did the Hi-Dive first open? And when did you guys take over?

A: I’ve gathered from (original owners) Matt Labarge and Allison Housley that Hi-Dive opened on Nov. 16th, 2003, and Matty and I took over November 1st last year. So we figured it was a great reason to have a big party.

Q: Since it’s been a year, what has surprised you the most, good or bad, about owning the rock club and manning its day-to-day?

A: Running a venue has been a great experience for me. Although I have worked at many small venues around town for the last 10 years (ie the Larimer Lounge, the original Walnut Room and Benders), I’ve always felt that Hi-Dive is my home in Denver. And now owning it is like a dream come true. I couldn’t possibly have a better group of people invested in it. Matty is the best business partner possible, and he picks up all the loose ends I leave around and is just in general an awesome guy. Ben, like I’ve said, has the best eye for talent anywhere. And Xandy and Devon make it the best-sounding club in town. And also Holland is around.

Q: And now the One and Ten Anniversary Party: Holy reunions, dude. Whose idea was this?

A: The party was kind of a brainchild of all of ours. We wanted to have all the bands that have been a part of the Hi-Dive since the beginning until today get together to have a celebration on the Denver music scene over the last decade. So we tried to include our employees’ bands (new and old) along with some of our favorite local bands of the last ten years. I am insanely excited to see sets from Monofog and Red Cloud again, as they are two of my favorite bands ever (local or not) along with Red Orange Yellow, Git Some and the reincarnation of Horace Van Vaughn. On a personal note, I have really missed playing music with Jason Walker (drummer of Machine Gun Blues) and am also really stoked to see his, Karl and Patrick’s (formerly of Denver bands the New Rome and Angels Never Answer) new band Empty Palace fly out from L.A. just for the event to play on Saturday the 16th. Zebroids had the pleasure of playing with them in L.A. on our last tour, and they were fucking awesome.

Q: Which of the acts was the toughest to get back together?

A: Machine Gun Blues was probably the hardest band to get to play, as Aaron is really busy with A Tom Collins, Jermaine hasn’t played music since the last time we played, Walker lives in California and Holland is, well … Holland. It is really fun to hang out with all those guys and talk about music again. I think we’re going to have some tricks up our sleeves for this show.

Q: Since the music is going to sound like 2004, are you dressing like it’s 2004?

A: Yes we will be dressing (and acting) exactly like we did back in 2004.

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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.