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N3ptune and Rusty Steve: Genre-bending Pop in the Mile High City

N3ptune and Rusty Steve from Denver, CO are making some of the most interesting music in the Mile High City right now. Named the “Best Breakout Artist of 2023” by local magazine Westword, N3ptune and Rusty Steve’s music blends pop with dark, thumping electronic beats, gospel music, blues, soul, and a healthy sprinkling of kickass guitar solos. 

N3ptune himself started music while still in high school, quickly proving himself in the Denver scene as a singer/songwriter and producer. His star has risen quickly, as him and Rusty Steve, his co-producer and guitarist, have since received placement on syndicated radio station KTCL Channel 93.3 with the single “Black Horse.” They’ve also headlined Denver’s Pridefest, performed at some of Colorado’s biggest and most beloved stages like Red Rocks, and toured the east coast with experimental pop duo Sleigh Bells.

“SHADOW” is an excellent track featuring a gloriously gothic soundscape.

In June, they released their latest single, “SHADOW.” It is a truly excellent track. Vaguely sinister synths lay the foundation for a gloriously gothic soundscape that sounds like it would play in a rave held in an abandoned cathedral, while N3ptune’s vocals start at a menacing whisper and build to a powerful, soulful belt that ties all the song’s elements together. You can watch the (very well-directed) music video for this single below:

The music video for N3ptune and Rusty Steve’s “SHADOW.”

N3ptune and Rusty Steve’s website teases the release of their sophomore album later this year.

Right now, N3ptune and Rusty Steve’s website teases the release of their sophomore album later in 2023, a follow-up to their 2021 full-length debut, RENAISSANCE. They also re-released RENAISSANCE earlier this year as RENAISSANCE (THE REVIVAL), featuring remixed versions of several songs from the original album. The best of these has got to be “WHITE PONY (REVIVAL EDITION),” which adds Rusty Steve’s soulful and impressively technical guitar work over the already great original version’s stomping beat, the cleverly added gospel choir-styles hums in its bridge, and of course, N3ptune’s searing, pained vocals. The guitar elevates a solid track to something truly exciting and fresh as it provides an instrumental parallel to the fraught tension of N3ptune’s vocals and lyrics. 

N3ptune and Rusty Steve really have everything going for them right now. A unique and entertaining sound, a killer aesthetic, and what seems to be a tireless work ethic. Definitely keep an eye out for their new album later in 2023. We certainly will.

N3ptune and Rusty Steve perform “WHITE PONY” from their album RENAISSANCE.

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