During the past 20 years, Launchpad (618 Central SW) has come to symbolize more than merely a jumping-off point to this or that star-strewn realm. It’s the joint where earthbound Burqueños go to see shows. Number one on our list this year, Launchpad offers up everything from hellacious hip-hop to powerful punk rock. In between days, you may even hear experimental sound-collage streaming from its mouthy airlocks; Launchpad rocks.
Red light cameras can’t stop scofflaws from carelessly zooming through dangerous intersections in these parts, but their musical namesake, the band Red Light Cameras, sure as hell knows how to wrangle Alibi readers’ votes. This year’s Best Band in Burque winner stars powerhouse vocalist Amanda Machon, guitarist Chris Walsh, bassist Barney Lopez and drummer Joe Bolt. Together, these fine folks create a brand of indie-pop that’s as blisteringly blues-based as it is fresh and innovative.
With so many working musicians in town, one could conceivably line their instruments up across the ecliptic, using the lot to set the boundaries of our solar system. Alibi readers were clear about who should lead such a stellar procession. They voted for Ryan McGarvey, a bluesman with chops that have propelled the guitarist through stunning local engagements and out into the world. Multitalented metal messiah Steve Hammond, the frontman of Leeches of Lore, got tied up with mellifluous singer-songwriter Keith Sanchez for the Number two honors.