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“The music is refined and potent. These songs will stick in your head. They will make you move. They aren't cock rock, they aren't stadium rock, they are super-garage rock, vibrant and fiery. ” (Nate Ragolia, 2012).Vices I Admire is an alternative rock band from Denver, CO. Formed in 2002 in Fort Collins, CO originally under the name Plan B. The current lineup is Dave Curtis (vocals, guitar; 2002-present), Dan Battenhouse (bass, vocals; 2009-present) and Alex Simpson (drums, vocals; 2012-present); for performances, a second-guitarist spot is filled by various musicians, the most recent being Scott Uhl (of Glass Delirium).
Original members included: Curtis, Robert Marston (bass, 2002-2007), Mickey Dollar (guitar, 2002-2012) and Mark Towne (drums, 2002-2012). Marston was replaced by Dan Battenhouse (formerly of the Fray) in 2009. Dollar and Towne left the band in 2012 and were replaced by Alex Simpson (drums) and Tavis Alley (guitar) later that same year. Alley left Vices I Admire in 2013 and the band continued on as a 3-piece.
Vices' music is an amalgam of various influences and – though, decidedly rock – nods to hip hop, folk and funk. They have been compared to Panic! At The Disco, Foo Fighters, Foxy Shazam, Candlebox, Incubus, My Chemical Romance, The Matches, Queens of the Stone Age, AFI and even Prince. Their songs are generally guitar-driven, but also feature unusually melodic bass lines and colorful drum work. However, the defining sound of Vices throughout its various lineups are the personal – often cryptic – lyrics and vocal gymnastics of front man, Curtis.
Vices released their first album, Plan B. in 2005 – they changed their name to Vices I Admire in conjunction with the release and titled the album in honor of their original name. The album draws heavily from the nu-metal scene and bands like Deftones and System of a Down. “Monster”, the first single from Plan B., is traditionally used to close Vices' sets – as such, it is one of their most well-known songs, second only to “Sweetest Girl” (from their sophomore effort, The Politics of Apathy). The second single from Plan B., “By the Way”, won $5,000 in a contest run by OurStage.com (2007), is featured on the punk-rock compilation, Dagger Sight Records Volume II, and is the backing track to NFMan Productions' short film, Wedding Day.
Their sophomore effort, The Politics of Apathy was released in 2010. The album was well-received by local press and fans alike. Though it did present a departure from their original sound; where Plan B. was raw, fast and angry, ...Politics... was oftentimes reserved and thoughtful and more refined. Songs like “Kiss Kiss” and “Keep Killin' Me” maintained the band's tendency toward the heavier end of the rock spectrum; while the dramatic, piano-and-vocals piece, “Denouement: An Intermezzo” and the heart-achingly honest indie-rocker, “It Is” showcased a more adult and mindful writing style.
"The new album, The Politics of Apathy, from Vices I Admire, is a nine-song combination of two of my very favorite things: an array of different styles when the band can do it right, and raw, in-your-face lyrics."
- Steffanie Giesler, Colorado Music Buzz (Jan 01, 2010)
"...a great mix of precise musicianship, very emotional and polished vocals, well written lyrics, and sonic colors from many places in the musical rainbow."
- James (JJ Rocks) Johnston, St Croix Music (Jan 01, 2010)
The first single from ...Politics..., “Sweetest Girl” is the band's most lauded track. In April, 2010, it won a competition from WeAreListening.org which granted the band 3 months of distribution through Tinderbox Music. The track went on to be placed in MTV's “The Real World: Las Vegas” and on the Oxygen Network's “Bad Girls Club”. It also earned top spins on many college radio charts that year and has been featured on several compilation albums.
Vices' third album, Venom & Pride marked yet another change in Vices' musical style. Preceding the departure of two of the groups' founding members, Mark Towne and Mickey Dollar, it is a darker and more stylistically intricate work.
"Vices I Admire is but a humble group of four Denverites, who are slowly pushing their way through Shit Creek with a paddle made of pure Rock. Their new EP, Venom and Pride, is a 15-minute dash over white-water rapids and razor sharp rocks. It’s fast, it’s crazy, it’s fun." - Harley Patton, Indie Music Reviewer (Mar 02, 2012)
Vices fourth album, Fables, was released on May 4th, 2013. It was the first album recorded and produced entirely by the band.