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Turn it Down: Mr. Denton On Doomsday at Mac’s Bar

Local experimental rock outfit hosts celebration, announces new LP

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Friday, May 10 @ Mac’s Bar, 2700 E. Michigan Ave., Lansing. All ages, $12, $10 adv., 8 p.m.

Local alt-rock band Mr. Denton on Doomsday hosts a birthday celebration for Brian Alspaugh, its lead singer and guitarist, Friday at Mac’s Bar. Also performing at the all-ages evening of locally-made music are Jenn’s Apartment, Odds Fish and Something Involving A Monkey. Since its 2007 genesis, Alspaugh has led Mr. Denton on Doomsday through multiple tours and recording sessions, including its 2009 debut full-length, “The Mouse Circus.” The 12-song album, which delved into politics and personal conflicts, includes the band’s breakout single “Karo,” which scored airplay on more than 400 internet radio stations.

The band—which also comprises Josie Taylor (vocals), Ben Martin (drums) and Matt Bush (bass)—issued its latest release in 2014, the “Origami Trail” LP, which is available on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Beats and local record shops.

“We have supported that album with four national tours from ocean to ocean, including performances at The Whisky A Go-Go and at Common Ground,” Alspaugh said. “We have performed from New York to California and plenty in between.”

Over the years, Mr. Denton has opened shows for the likes of Otep, Nonpoint, The Misfits, Candlebox and Three Days Grace, among others. But now, the band is focused on wrapping up its upcoming third LP—its first in five years. The new track list includes “Fail in Reverse,” the introspective first single off the forthcoming 10-song album.

“We are currently recording our follow-up, ‘The Infinite Staircase,’ at Elm Street Recordings here in Lansing,” Alspaugh said. “Josie and I just got home from another day of tracking vocals. We have the music down and hope to have the album ready for a summer release. We’ll be supporting the new album with a 2019 east coast tour and more to follow.”

Mining influences spanning from King Crimson and Queens of the Stone Age to the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Incubus, Mr. Denton has always prided itself on exploring new sounds and ponderous, offbeat lyrical themes. From metal to funk and alternative rock to pop, nothing is off limits. The new disc will be no different, according to Alspaugh, who admits “Seriously Odd. Oddly Serious” is the band’s motto while in the studio and onstage.

“I believe as songwriters we are constantly pushing ourselves to never be content,” Alspaugh said. “That may lead to us falling on our faces, however we’d rather have taken the risk than played it safe.

“We are constantly trying to experiment, evolve and satisfy our own curiosity,” he added. “The idea behind ‘The Infinite Staircase’ is that everything in life travels in circles—in nature, in space and in our lives—we will be at this same point again. But if we can be aware of our position in the circle, we can climb the staircase instead of walking in circles, or digging a trench into the ground.”

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