Leftover Salmon and Breckenridge Brewery announce release of Silver Salmon IPL and new live album “25” | SummitDaily.com

Leftover Salmon and Breckenridge Brewery announce release of Silver Salmon IPL and new live album “25”

Allison Cohn
Special to the Daily

What better way to celebrate a quarter of a century anniversary than with delicious beer and great music? The taste of Colorado is summed up in a nutshell with Silver Salmon India Pale Lager, a light and hoppy beer by Breckenridge Brewery and Leftover Salmon. These guys have joined forces to create the perfect beer pairing for the band's signature "slamgrass" brand of music.

Both Breckenridge Brewery and Leftover Salmon celebrate their 25th anniversary this year and wanted to do something special to commemorate it. Leftover Salmon will be releasing "25," an album that includes 25 never before released live tracks from shows that took place in 2013-14. Download codes for the album "25" will be packaged exclusively with 22-ounce bombers of Silver Salmon India Pale Lager. "25" is also currently available for download from iTunes.

Leftover Salmon and Breckenridge Brewery were on a quest for the ideal beverage to complement listening to live music.

"We thought an India Pale Lager would be a great style because it's light and refreshing such that you can enjoy more than one, yet there's plenty of complexity and flavor," said Todd Thibault, culture czar for Breckenridge Brewery, in a statement. "It's the perfect beer for hanging out at a show and celebrating life, music and Colorado."

Leftover Salmon drummer Alwyn Robinson describes how the creative process behind designing Silver Salmon IPL shared similar qualities to recording an album or writing a song.

"We all sat down at the round table to discuss what sort of beer we'd like: Not too light, not too dark, just right in the middle," he said.

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They worked out a balance, with everyone contributing to the drawing board, and put all of the individual ideas together to create one big concept.

Robinson is traditionally a bourbon drinker, but when it comes to beer, he tends to prefer either extremely hoppy varieties or really dark, thick beers.

"Silver Salmon IPL is neither of those things," he said. "It's not too light, but it still has a nice middle ground. And it's good to try something outside of my comfort zone."

Leftover Salmon bassist Greg Garrison was responsible for choosing the tracks for "25." He put a lot of work into really listening to all the songs, finding the ones with the best quality, most articulate versions and best sound. It was a fun experience for the band to go back and hear all of their different tracks from venues all over the country.

"It really brought us back to thinking about each performance in each venue in each city," Robinson said. "Greg did a really good job fine tuning '25' for the listener's ear."

In re-listening to so many live shows, one in particular stood out to Robison: A Boulder Theater concert that featured Bill Payne of Little Feat and horns.

"The quality was just amazing," he said. "Remembering that performance was awesome. I remember thinking, while we were playing that show, that if we recorded this and put it on an album it'd be great."

How did these two homegrown Colorado talents first hook up in the first place? In 2012, Leftover Salmon and Breckenridge Brewery threw a street party in honor of the band's album launch for "Aquatic Hitchhiker." The following year in 2013, Leftover Salmon wrote four songs that were pre-released with Breckenridge Brewery's 12-pack sampler pack on artist series coasters. The rest was history.

Leftover Salmon and Breckenridge Brewery have more in common than just a passion for tasty libations and groovy tunes. They both got their start in Colorado mountain towns. And both the band and the brewery have grown to earn national acclaim, each becoming masters of their own crafts over the last 25 years. Leftover Salmon first officially got together in Crested Butte on New Year's Eve in 1989 and proceeded to take the bluegrass world by storm with their intense and specialized spin on string-based music. Establishing a following of devoted fans across the country, Leftover Salmon has paved the way for the jam band scene. The band's most recent album "High Country" (2014) demonstrates their diverse range of artistic ability, ranging from speedy pickin' jams to soulful blues ballads.

Founded in 1990 by Richard Squire, former ski bum and homebrew extraordinaire, Breckenridge Brewery has spent the past two decades growing from a modest brewpub to a hugely successful distributor of craft beer, with a restaurant to boot. They started off producing a mere 3,000 barrels per year in the early days. Now Breckenridge Brewery handcrafts over 64,000 barrels of beer annually and is among the top 50 craft breweries in the nation. They currently own and operate five brewpubs and alehouses in the state of Colorado.

Given Breckenridge Brewery's mission to create very balanced and highly drinkable beers and with Leftover Salmon's ability to stir up a whirlwind of a hootenanny, Silver Salmon IPL is a collaboration guaranteed to please.

Visit leftoversalmon.com/silversalmon25 to sign up to win an original album cover artwork, a 36×36 canvas acrylic painting by local artist Scramble Campbell. For information on Silver Salmon IPL pricing and availability, visit Breckenridge Brewery's beer locator site at http://www.breckbrew.com/beer-locator.