Brains are sexy – HotIQs |

Brains are sexy – HotIQs

Pete Fowler
Special to the DailyHot IQs will bring its intelligent rock to Eagle's Nest Friday at 5:30 p.m. and then continue on to Sandbar at 10 p.m. for a show rooted in classic pop rock.

WEST VAIL – The Hot IQs think brains are sexy. The trio coined the term “wit-rock,” which describes its sound and the theme of intelligence which runs through their name, songwriting and collective persona. “We don’t think that we’re superior in terms of our brains, but I think it’s an often neglected area of music,” guitarist and singer Eli Mishkin said. The Hot IQs’ lyrics are generally more cerebral and clever compared to rock ‘n’ roll idioms. Hot Iqs sing:”We like hot girls with hot IQs … your breasts were the best I’ve ever seen/But there’s nothing in between.”

These lyrics are about how they find intelligence and heart attractive, rather than appreciating only superficial beauty.The Hot IQs draw influence from bands like Pavement, The Pixies and The Talking Heads. Described by the band as “blending classic pop, fuzzed-out rock, and hints of edgy lounge,” the music sounds original, with a genuine quality to it that grabs the listener. Mishkin drapes the tight rhythm section with plush, mellifluous vocals that complete the sound. The Hot IQs formed in 2003 nearly on a whim with very little musical experience, but they sound like they’ve been together for decades. Friends and CU Boulder radio DJs Eli Miskin and Elaine Acosta became tired of existing only on the passive side of music, and decided to begin creating it. Hanging around Acosta’s apartment, talking about how bored they were of only listening to music, inspired a trip to purchase a drum set for Acosta. Quickly winning acclaim with awards like “Best Pop Band in Denver” by Westword, and breaking the top five in the Denver Post’s annual “Underground Bands Poll” in 2004, the Hot IQs are rolling into Vail on a hot streak.After writing some songs and playing a few shows, Mishkin and Acosta found bassist Bryan Feuchtinger by putting up signs around music shops. The three seemed to click almost instantly. When you hear them play, it’s difficult to believe Mishkin had never sang before and Acosta had never played the drums. It’s easy to imagine how far it might go with more experience.

“In some aspects, it surprises and baffles us in a good way,” Mishkin said, trying to explain their quick success. “We have a wide-eyed innocence and enthusiasm which people pick up on.”The Hot IQs released their debut CD, “An Argument Between the Brain and the Feet,” in 2004, which was hailed as one of the best mile-high releases of the year. Some bands the group has toured with include The Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Walkmen, Hot Hot Heat, Nada Surf, Sleepy Jackson and Dressy Bessy. Earlier this spring, the Hot IQs played the famed South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas, and have been touring this summer as well as writing new music for a second album. Look for them at Red Rocks with The Killers and Spoon on Aug. 12.Friday night, the Hot IQs play locally at the Eagle’s Nest at 5:30 and then head to the Sandbar for a show at 10.

Pete Fowler is a freelance writer and can be reached at Vail Colorado

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