Boombox 2.0 debuts at Belly Up Aspen on Thursday
June 8, 2017
If You Go …
Where: Belly Up Aspen
When: Today, 9 p.m.
How much: $35/GA; $45/reserved
Tickets: Belly Up box office; http://www.bellyupaspen.com
Late last year, the electro-rock duo BoomBox announced that its bandmembers would split up after their New Year's Eve concert at the Gothic Theatre in Denver. This week BoomBox (version 2.0) is making its first trip to Colorado — home of some of its most fervent and loyal fans — with a show at Belly Up Aspen today followed by Red Rocks Ampitheatre on Friday night and the Boulder Theatre on Saturday.
"The amicable separation is in no way a dissolution but rather the opening of a new chapter for BoomBox moving forward," the band wrote in a statement to fans in November. That new chapter started pretty quickly, with BoomBox guitarist, singer and songwriter Zion Godchaux bringing DJ and keyboard player DJ Harry on board to replace founding member Russ Randolph.
Godchaux never considered ending the BoomBox project when Randolph left, he said.
"Quite the contrary, I'm ready to make — and am making — a lot of music these days for BoomBox," Godchaux said in a recent phone interview from his home in Alabama. "We need to be releasing lots of music. That's the reason Russ and I went our separate ways."
Randolph left the band, in part, to focus on producing other project locally in and around Muscle Shoals. Godchaux, meanwhile, wanted BoomBox to record and release music more actively than it had been and break the band internationally.
"BoomBox needs our full attention," he explained.
Godchaux has been working on new music feverishly in recent months, aiming to feed fans a steady stream of new BoomBox tracks. Based on the first one, "Laid Back and Loaded," the band's signature sound of chilled-out psychadelia and funky house music remains in tact.
"That's pretty much my mode right now: to record and make as much music as I can in my studio at home," Godchaux said.
For the band's first time back in Colorado with DJ Harry, Godchaux said, BoomBox will play a mix of brand-new material and the familiar songs local crowds have heard in countless shows over the years.
"Harry brings a new energy to the show — he's an amazing DJ and an excellent musician," Godchaux said. "We've had a chance to retool some of the older songs and get them freshened up. It's sounding nice and sparking and cracking. Hopefully it'll be even funkier."
After years of performing clad in feather boas, Godchaux said he's dialing back some of BoomBox's stage aesthetic ("The stage gets hot up there") to focus on the music and creating the laid-back party vibe that connected with audiences immediately in Colorado and made BoomBox a regular at Belly Up over the past decade.
"Our music is about release and it's supposed to be healing and relaxing and freeing — very disarming by nature," he said. "Ultimately, it's a universal sound. Something anybody can cue into."
Opening the summer tour with an intimate show in the familiar and friendly confines of Belly Up before jumping to the massive open-air setting of Red Rocks was a creative choice, Godchaux said.
"To be able to relax the night before Red Rocks, and just do what we do and get loose and have a good night, it's sweet and it's necessary," he said.
And Godchaux is eager to share the new BoomBox with its loyal Colorado fans: "If states were friends, Colorado would be our best friend."
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