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Denton’s unique music sound is a reflection of its offbeat, mix-matched culture

Denton’s unique music sound is a reflection of its offbeat, mix-matched culture

Denton’s unique music sound is a reflection of its offbeat, mix-matched culture
July 12
12:00 2018

Denton has a unique mix of musicians and artists that is created by the city’s distinct culture of openness and creativity. Because Denton is a young town — the median age being around 28 years old — dreams are being followed, bands are being formed and new music is in the air. Local bars have stages for bands, great bands are playing unique music and most importantly, people are going out to see them and be a part of it all.

Bands like Two Knights and Hey, Cowboy both have punk-inspired sounds, and both present their own spins on the evolving genre. Best of all, they are both from Denton!

You can hear the Denton in both bands. This sound stems from Denton’s young crowd of talented artists, some of which come from the draw of UNT being a prestigious music school. Others simply love music and want to create it in a place where the local culture will allow it to flourish.

The atmosphere of a large liberal arts college is especially visible in its students and the young population of the city. There are so many people passionate in what they do, open-minded to new ideas and accepting of other people’s ways of life, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Denton isn’t perfect. There will always be outliers. But I believe this is a city and culture that is accepting of all, regardless of background or differences.

I can imagine listening to Hey, Cowboy and Two Knights while I walk around Denton, the campus, the square or even through the neighborhoods, and the music would feel right at home in all of these places.

Their music is weird too, just like Denton. You can tell by how the people dress, with retro shops like Alfie’s Archive becoming popular on the square, and what they study — UNT graduated 882 multidisciplinary students in 2015 — which further explains Denton’s open-minded culture.

Hey, Cowboy has a relaxed, soft-folk sound, that is sometimes accentuated with a synthesizer that adds a hint of ’80s inspiration and meshes with the vocals well, creating a surreal blend of the two sounds. This could also be said for how the people of Denton dress — a style which incorporates odd pieces that shouldn’t work in theory, but are made to work by the person wearing the outfit.

Clothes that don’t fit, patterns you wouldn’t usually see together, odd accessories — but it all works and is carried well by the person wearing it. I would describe the culture of Denton using that same metaphor, a weird assemblage that intermingles strikingly and creates an original “piece” that fits comfortably on our shoulders, although to some it may seem slightly askew.

The metaphorical outfit only works because of the metaphorical person wearing it. To keep Denton open-minded and supportive of all walks of life, we must eagerly support local art. The more we support a thriving young art scene, the more our culture will continue to grow, mold and intertwine, becoming more of a representation of ourselves and our distinct stamp on the world.

Denton’s music scene is a small, colorful sprout pushing its head through the soil — one that must still be nourished and cared for. But with enough support, that sprout can become something beautiful the whole community can be proud of.

Featured illustration by Elizabeth Rhoden

About Author

Nicholas Stiltner

Nicholas Stiltner

NT Daily Opinion Writer

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