You don’t always have to drive to Denver to see the hottest bands. On Wednesday, you’ll only have to go as far as Platte Avenue.
(If you were lucky enough to get tickets.)
The Black Sheep, 2106 E. Platte Ave., will host three alternative rock bands Wednesday that are making waves on the charts. You can’t touch that radio dial (or streaming service) these days without hearing the latest from lovelytheband, Flora Cash and Jagwar Twin.
Sorry fans, this show has (predictably) sold out. Fortunately, though, The Gazette got to speak with members of all three bands before their show here.
• Genre: Alternative rock
• Current album: “Finding It Hard to Smile” (2018)
• Listen: “Maybe I’m afraid” (youtube.com)
• Watch: ”Broken,” official video (youtube.com)
• Website: lovelytheband.com
• Interviewed: Jordan Greenwald, 22, guitarist
Whether headlining a show for 18,000 at Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre in Denver or playing for a capacity crowd of 450 at the Black Sheep, lovelytheband is just happy to be performing.
“Every time we go on stage, we’re like, ‘We hope people are there!’” said Greenwald, speaking from the band’s home base in Los Angeles recently. “Even just to come back to Colorado and play a room like this (Black Sheep), to bring this kind of multiplied element to the show to a small room will make it so much better. We’re so, so excited.”
Greenwald, who joined the band at age 21, is staying modest, it seems, while living the dream.
Lovelytheband’s breakthrough indie-pop song “Broken” off debut album “Finding It Hard to Smile” hit No. 1 on the “Billboard’s” Alternative and Adult Pop charts in 2017, breaking the record for consecutive weeks on the Alternative charts with more than 66.
“Definitely ‘Broken’ paved the way for us,” he said.
Greenwald is the son of television producer Todd J. Greenwald, who created Disney teen sitcom “Wizards of Waverly Place”, and a talent agent. He met band frontman Mitchy Collins at a bar in L.A., and together they found drummer Sam Price on Instagram. They found an almost instant rapport typically reserved for childhood friends.
“We meet, we put out the music, and then we’re off to the races. We genuinely love each other. It could’ve gone the other way. To be honest, it’s pretty amazing,” he said.
The band has been touring nonstop for 1 ½ years, and the three musicians are “itching to get into the studio” to record some new music.
“We have some wheels turning. We’re starting to write,” Greenwald said.
When will a new album come out? “It will depend on the tour and our relationships ... I’m gonna find out when you find out.”
• Genre: Indie pop, Alternative pop, indie folk, dream pop
• Current album: “Press” EP (March 2019)
• Listen: “You’re Somebody Else” (youtube.com)
• Watch: “They Own This Town” (youtube.com)
• Website: floracash.com
• Interviewed: Shpresa Lleshaj and Cole Randall, both 25, the married couple behind Flora Cash
When Lleshaj and Randall, aka Flora Cash, were in Colorado Springs last August, they recorded “You’re Somebody Else” in the studio at RXP 103.9 FM. The local alternative rock station has been broadcasting that haunting acoustic version of their breakthrough song ever since.
Seven years ago, Lleshaj, a native of Stockholm, Sweden, commented online on songs Randall posted on Soundcloud. An online friendship bloomed. Two months later, she flew to Minneapolis to meet the Minnesota native who would become her husband within the year. They now call Stockholm home.
“We’re like best friends as much as we’re collaborators,” Randall said Thursday from a tour stop in Portland, Ore. “Our relationship is not always roses or butterflies or whatever, but generally we get along really well.”
If a music career hadn’t panned out, Lleshaj said, she probably would be working in one of her other passions — science. “I was doing environmental science and chemistry before. But I think I would still do everything I could with music,” she said.
Randall said if he weren’t a musician, he probably would be a therapist or a college professor, likely teaching philosophy. “I was just about to get my associate’s degree when Shpresa and I got together. I got derailed, but for the better.”
Flora Cash anticipates a new full-length album will be ready “toward the end of summer.”
• Genre: Alternative rock, dream pop
• Current album: “Subject to Flooding” (releases Friday)
• Listen: “Loser” (spotify.com)
• Watch: Video for “Long Time Coming”
• Website: jagwartwin.com
• Interviewed: Roy English, aka Jagwar Twin, 30
Pop anthem “Loser” is that catchy tune that’s probably stuck in your head right now. Roy English, who goes professionally by the name Jagwar Twin, released the single in September.
Fans will hear the song and others from his debut album, “Subject to Flooding,” at the Black Sheep. “But there will be some surprises,” English said from Sacramento, Calif., last week.
“What I would really hope to see is that everyone in the audience, everyone that we encounter, myself, the Jagwar Twin band, experiences a sense of freedom, and they can truly be themselves and express themselves however they want to. We’re all one once we step into that venue. We’re all here to connect with each other,” he said.
English counts John Lennon and Jimi Hendrix as his biggest influences. “No one could probably hear it in my music, but they have influenced me quite a bit.”
It’s been a big year for English/Jagwar Twin. He recently signed with Atlantic Records and embarked on his first nationwide tour — this whopper with lovelytheband and Flora Cash, which runs through September. His album “Subject to Flooding” releases Friday.
Contact the writer, 476-1602