Queen City Sounds Podcast S2E29: Faceman

Faceman, photo by Tom Murphy

Steve Faceman has been a prolific and active artist in the Denver rock underground since the late 2000s with his project utilizing as a moniker his adopted surname. The group, mostly a trio, has developed an eclectic musical style that often waxes between indie rock and pop and Americana with underpinnings of experimental music and jazz. The songwriting has always been finely honed with lyrics that reveal the perspective of artists with a self-awareness and sensitivity to the human condition and the ways we go through life finding meaning and experiences that open and expand our horizons and depth of feeling. What has often set Faceman apart from other bands has been a seeming instinct for creative presentation in a community oriented fashion. Some of the early shows involved elaborate costumes and set pieces seemingly crafted from basic elements and a basic level of skill but obvious imagination. Like a child’s craft project and the homespun charm that entails. At other times the band collaborated with theater production companies to create a stage setting like the paper Megalodon for a show in 2013, the massive tornado sculpture brought to the Oriental Theater for the Faceman’s 100 Year Storm festival in 2016 (which featured 100 bands across two days) and the Journey to the Sun festival in 2015 at Ophelia’s Electric Soap Box (this one had a mere 80 bands over the same timeframe). With each, Steve helped to facilitate massive community involvement to make for a memorable and unique event and experience for everyone involved. On many if not all Faceman records there are guest musicians and recorded at noteworthy recording studios with cover art by members of the local arts scene as well. All of this is to say that Faceman certainly cares about its own fine music but the band recognizes its context and feeds into that ecosystem in a very direct and grassroots way. In 2022 Faceman releases its 2016 album Wild and Hunting for the first time on vinyl as well as its 2022 album Western Jupiter, a relatively spare record by Faceman standards but also an intimate portrait of human experience and kind of an Americana science fiction anthology of songs about the travails of the past few years.

Listen to our interview with Faceman on Bandcamp and connect with the band at the website link below. Faceman has an album release event at The Skylark Lounge Bobcat Club on Thursday, December 22, 2022 with Tivoli Club Brass Band and Anthony Ruptak.