Look out Byers – there’s a RIOT going down

Look out Byers – there’s a RIOT going down

September 17, 2013 Off By Billy Thieme
The Riot Fest comes to Byers, CO this weekend. (Map: RiotFest.org)

The Riot Fest comes to Byers, CO this weekend. (Map: RiotFest.org)

If you haven’t heard of the impending onslaught of music about to hit Byers, Colorado this weekend, you’ve definitely been living under a rock. Or, maybe more likely, you’ve just been listening to the wrong music for the past few decades – in which case this, the last of the blockbuster summer festivals for 2013, isn’t going to matter to you anyway (although, oddly enough, this summer festival actually wraps up on the autumnal equinox – where’s Alanis Morrisette for this one?). It’s the Riot Fest, now in its 9th incarnation, rolling into May Farms in Byers, straight from the headline-busting Chicago version last weekend.

Bundled up in multiple buses, trailers and trucks barrelling in from the midwest, this two-day collection of bands spanning ‘70s Proto and ‘80s Post-Punk with the Stooges, FLAG (half of the split touring bands made up of the ever-changing cast of Black Flag), Superchunk, Guided By Voices, Rocket From the Crypt, Naked Raygun, Yo La Tengo, and the supreme draw, the newly reunited-after-twenty-years Replacements promises to be more than memorable – it might just be legendary.

Not only do those of us who grew up listening endlessly to Paul Westerberg’s drunken howl, or Iggy Pop’s guttural whine finally get to see them, the thousands of you who weren’t even born when these bands grew weary of the road get a chance to actually witness some of the legends that make what you know as “Punk” or “Rock” what it is today. The fact is that we, spanning – what, three, four overlapping generations (each one seemingly more nihilistic, confused, disillusioned, disenfranchised and lazy than the last) will be sharing a chance to watch a mix of an entire history of music unfold over a weekend.

So now it’s time for the old, pedantic parent in me to come out and make sure all you young’uns aren’t missing out. You all need to know what to listen for out there that graced the airwaves while so many of you were still swimming in protoplasm. So – checkout the playlist old Grandpa DenverThread has compiled for you, so you have a little taste of the heavy hitters (the ones who were teaching all the members of Blink-182’s dads how to scoop up their friends from the maelstrom of a slam dancing pit before skulls were cracked – laughing all the while). Listen to all of these, and make sure you catch them in the first day’s lineup. We’ll try and get a day two playlist up soon as well.

Now get the hell off my lawn, and take that smirk somewhere else, DJ Trevor.

Riot Fest 2013 – Preview Playlist:

Stooges – T.V. Eye

Stooges – Search and Destroy

Black Flag – Six Pack

Black Flag – Wasted

Black Flag – Nervous Breakdown

The Replacements – Hold My Life

The Replacements – Favorite Thing

The Replacements – Androgynous

The Replacements – Gary’s Got A Boner

The Replacements – Answering Machine

Public Enemy – Fight the Power

Public Enemy – 911 is a Joke

Public Enemy – Public Enemy #1

Public Enemy – Can’t Truss It

Guided By Voices – Kicker of Elves

Guided By Voices – The Goldheart Mountaintop Queen Directory

Superchunk – Certain Stars

Superchunk – Tie A Rope to the Back of the Bus

Rocket from the Crypt – Hairball Alley

Rancid – Rats in the Hallway

DeVotchka – Venus In Furs

DeVotchka – I Cried Like A Silly Boy


  • Billy Thieme

    Aging punk rocker with a deep of all things musical and artistic, enough to remain constantly young and perpetually mystified. Billy has journalistic dreams, but of a decidedly pastoral, Scottish nature.