(Photo: CPR / Daniel Mescher)

OpenAir hosted two New Year's Eve concerts with Slim Cessna's Auto Club at the Oriental Theater this week. The event featured a. tom collins, Munly & the Lupercalians, and MC Sid Pink who rung in 2014 with a bang!
Featuring renowned Denver musicians Jay Munly and frontman Slim Cessna, the Auto Club has been open for business since 1992 churning out alt-country mayhem and have established themselves as a formidable veteran act in their two decade-plus career.
Monday night, Opener a. tom collins proved to be a more than worthy warm-up for the mayhem soon to follow, courtesy of the Auto Club. Known throughout Denver and beyond for being a bit of a hellraiser, bandleader Aaron Collins possessed a manic energy that ensnared not only his bandmates, but all those in a 50 foot radius from the Oriental's stage. Collins and his band are adamant subscribers to that old adage "it don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing": each song forced hips to shake with belting horns and clarinet solos, heroic bass rhythm, and Collin's train-hopper croon. "We're gonna be swinging from the rafters tomorrow night," promised Collins, an enticing proposition for all those in attendance to re-up for Tuesday night tickets. 
Slim Cessna's Auto Club has a reputation for putting on a live show that doubles as a cardio workout as well. Jello Biafra once deemed them "the country band that plays the bar at the end of the world." By combining doom-and-gloom lyrics with a country-rock wail, Slim Cessna and co-frontman Jay Munly filled the room with apocalyptic dread backed by unmistakably groovy alt-country. Slim and his band occupied the stage with the confidence owed to 20-plus years in the performing circuit, with each move decidedly resolute without seeming choreographed. 
Check out pictures from the show above.