There's not a lot of cross-pollination between Santa Fe and Albuquerque bands, even though we each have scenes that are uniquely our own and in fairly close proximity to each other (40 minutes' drive ain’t much). You don't often see Santa Feans playing in Albuquerque, and even less Burqueños make it out to Santa Fe. (One possible explanation: Santa Fe venues book one band for two- and three-hour sets, and the long gigs pay well. In Albuquerque, we cram three or four bands into a few hours, which cuts into each band's profit. Not many Albuquerque bands have a three-hour set list in their back pocket. Not many Santa Fe bands will drive all the way down here for a $50 gig.) That has to change. But that's just the bands. What's preventing everyone else, the casual listeners, from engaging in the other city's scene?
If it's simply because you don't know where to start, I'll throw D Numbers out there. The Santa Fe three-piece acknowledges there's not a tidy way of describing its niche, but "psychedelic," "live electronics" and "rock" appear as its MySpace genre tags. Now, before you start getting all squeamish about what a big tent like that could sound like, let me preface that D Numbers was one of six New Mexico finalists considered by the South by Southwest selection committee. And while you probably haven't heard of them, D Numbers has spent the last six years galvanizing a strong Santa Fe base by making dance music that cantilevers synthesized with organic, and polyrhythmic buoyancy with emotional weight. To put it bluntly: Yeah, D Numbers is worth the drive.
This Saturday, July 5, D Numbers is asking the curious among Albuquerque to go ahead and dip a toe into the Santa Fe music pool. The band is throwing its beloved drummer, Feathericci (who also moonlights as a DJ, if I'm not mistaken), a birthday party on the Santa Fe Brewing Co. patio. The all-ages rave-up starts at 6 p.m. with live mixes by DJ Miss Ginger and Joshua 23 (Boulder, Colo.) and fire dancing by someone called "Ting." If traversing La Bajada is out of the question, D Numbers' debut album, Lightparade, came out in March 2007 and can be purchased on CDBaby.com. Or make three new friends in Santa Fe at myspace.com/dnumbersband.