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It's a chilly Monday night and the band Dirty Honey is in town playing at the world-famous Bluebird Theater.  To be honest, I've never heard of the band but figured a live rock and roll show would be just the ticket to cap off a long day at work.  Plus, I never turn down an invite to live music and was excited to see what Dirty Honey had to offer fans here in Denver.  Rolling in with a lot of hype, attitude, and ton of bluesy rock and roll grit,  I was more then willing to partake it what I thought should be an interesting night in The Mile High City.

Before we get under way, a few things you should know about Dirty Honey.  They currently hold a unique spot in rock as the only unsigned rock band to hit #1 in Billboard's 40-year history without label support.  In addition, they also hit #1 on the mainstream rock charts and happened to land a spot on the list of the 66 best rock songs of the decade (and that is a huge accomplishment for such a young band).  Dirty Honey seems to be walking on hallowed ground along side legends like Marilyn Manson, Deftones, Foo Fighters, and Alice In Chains.  However, you wouldn't know that by the way they carry themselves on and off the stage.  Dirty Honey is hungry, and know they have a lot to prove if they are going to sustain their initial success in the upper echelons of rock royalty.  

First up at the Bluebird were The Amazons, and they took to the stage in front of a fairly packed house to get the night's festivities underway.  This killer UK quartet is trying to establish a fan base here in the U.S. and really got the crowd rocking with their big sound and killer riffs.  Front-man Matt Thomson’s howling vocals warmed the Bluebird right up opening with "Fuzzy Tree" followed up by "Mother", a track that just slapped you in the face with the intense drum playing of Joe Emmett.  Add in Chris Alderton’s harsh, discordant mixture sounding guitar riffs and Elliot Briggs chunky basslines and you had all the ingredients for some in your face rock and roll.  The Amazons ended their set with "Black Magic",  and all you could see across a now packed house were heads bobbing to one incredible beat.  This band rocked and definitely set the mood for what was to come next.   I have to give The Amazons credit, their style and take on good old fashioned rock and roll is legit.

After a brief intermission, lights finally dimmed as AC/DC began rocking the Bluebird.  The floor was now completely packed and immediately started to roar (even before Dirty Honey made it out on stage).  Then just when you think it couldn't get any louder, the band made their way to the stage and cranked up their opener, "Scars".  Taking center stage was vocalist Marc Labelle, and dressed as the Mad Hatter,  made his way out the rabbit hole to serve the crowd some mushroom tea that put everybody in a full-blow rock and roll trance on Monday evening.  His unique ear piercing raspy vocals coupled with a hypnotic swagger were in full display and quickly devolved into utter madness at the Bluebird.

Throughout the set, guitarist John Notto laid down some classic riffs on his Gibson,  Justin Smolian's thunderous bass was in full-effect, and the hard hitting drummer Cory Coverstone just manhandled his drum set (which I believe could be a major crime in some states).  Fans of all backgrounds were loving Dirty Honey, as fist pumping and head bobbin were constant all night long!  And just as I thought it couldn’t get any better, the theater erupts once again as hit "When I’m Gone" is unleashed upon the Denver faithful.  Wow.  This song was like a sports car with a supercharged V8 that has you screaming on take off with white knuckles clinched to the steering wheel throughout the ride.

Dirty Honey seems to have a solid fan base in Denver and think it will be a lot bigger after Monday's show.  I know because I became a big fan that evening.  Their performance was everything you would want in a rock and roll show and then-some.  If they ever make it to your neck of the woods during their Rolling 7's tour, drop some cash and check them out.  You will not be disappointed.  And in the big scheme of things, you'll be catching a band that is seemingly destined for greatness in the not so distant future.  The world is searching for something different, and it’s a perfect opportunity for a band like Dirty Honey to finally make their move.  

Article written by Luis Vargas and photography courtesy of Susie Wolcott


Susan Wolcott

Assistant Editor - Denver

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