Ark Life

VIDEO: Ark Life brings the spirit of the road to debut album, “The Dream of You & Me”

Ark Life’s drummer Ben Desoto keeps time on the steering wheel as he drives his bandmates on U.S. 36 from Denver toward Boulder. In the back of the white Ford E-350, Anna Morsett, Lindsay Giles and Natalie Tate huddle around Jesse Elliott and his acoustic guitar, warming up their voices with “Proud of Me Out There, Mama.” As a view of Boulder’s Flatirons fill the windshield, Elliott sings, “If it means over mountains dragging deserts to the river.” But, seeing the slabs of rock jutting from behind the city skyline he points and shouts, “look at those mountains,” and finishes the lyric, “then I’m moving again.” Since forming in early 2013, the Denver band has traveled around in this van to 150 shows.

Five Colorado bands and their national doppelgangers: Inner Oceans, Hot Apostles and more

The Underground Music Showcase is like Colorado's South By Southwest, with a few notable exceptions. First, there's a hell of a lot less sponsors. (And they're relevant: While fans at SXSW might scratch their heads over why Katy Perry is blasting the crowd with a Cool Ranch Doritos cannon, Illegal Pete's actually has its own label, Greater Than Collective, and serves as an official festival venue.) Second, it's a lot less hassle getting into shows.