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Album Reviews

Posted by Andre Perry | Dec 5, 2017

Here is another year of albums to consider. It’s silly to rank music at all and also fun in that it ignites passionate conversations about the art that has moved...

Posted by Nate Logsdon | Dec 5, 2017

We’re now over 50 albums deep into the career of Iowa City’s home-studio legend Samuel Locke Ward. He is, as they say, prolific. But the scale of his output wouldn’t...

Posted by Genevieve Trainor | Dec 5, 2017

Cedar Rapids musician Ryan Phelan has been a mainstay on the close-knit music scene there for years, from beloved jam band Dr. Z’s Experiment to fresh effort Young the Lion....

Posted by Kent Williams | Nov 14, 2017

To release two EPs under two different names within a few months of each other suggests Clancy Clark -- aka Selec, aka Clarence Johnson -- has been busy. According to...

Posted by Michael Roeder | Nov 14, 2017

The songs on Des Moines band/project Gloom Balloon’s sophomore album were inspired by life-changing events of falling in love and the birth of Patrick Tape Fleming’s son Nilsson (who makes...

Posted by Michael Roeder | Oct 17, 2017

'we will will you' isn’t about Julie and Andrew Thoreen's separation as couple and band but rather the subtly uncharted part where they consider coming back from it. The band...

Posted by Kent Williams | Oct 17, 2017

Illinois John Fever are a country blues band with a backyard party vibe; they lock into steady grooves made more exciting by the occasional moments where they drop time.

Posted by Nate Logsdon | Sep 19, 2017

The Host Country started as a Cedar Falls-based duo with Diana Weishaar and Ty Wistrand supplying tasteful piano and guitar settings to generous pop songs that they could really lay...

Posted by Michael Roeder | Sep 19, 2017

Des Moines-native singer-songwriter Ryne Doughty approached the production of his latest album, Date Night, with the desire to step away from the more stripped-down folk sound of his 2013 album,...

Posted by Michael Roeder | Sep 5, 2017

It’s impossible to talk about the history of Iowa modern rock without talking about Cedar Falls band House of Large Sizes. During their 17-year run (1986-2003) they released eight albums,...

Posted by Kent Williams | Sep 5, 2017

Trust a joker like Matthew James to open Impromptu Musicals For the Skeptic, his album with the Rust Belt Union, with a song titled “Goodbye.” Like Groucho Marx’s song “Hello,...

Posted by Kent Williams | Aug 15, 2017

Some of the best musicians in Iowa City and environs are not chasing a career in music. Keith Reins, for example, is a player and collector of folk songs who...

Posted by Nate Logsdon | Aug 15, 2017

Ramona Muse Lambert — a visual artist, designer and teacher in addition to her notable performance art, music and emceeing career — is singer and songwriter for Ramona and the...

Posted by Michael Roeder | Aug 1, 2017

Iowa City band Crystal City’s newest record Bartenderly molds midwestern milieu into 17 tracks of honest-to-goodness barroom rockers and ballads — the kind not heard from perhaps since the Replacements...