Hello, and welcome to another Weekender. This is a week with some great musical events, but also some events that touch on the real (or unreal?) world of politics.
City Council Candidate Forum // City of Iowa City City Hall // 7:00 PM // Free, All Ages
This past Tuesday saw the primary for the vacant seats of City Council. Four at-large candidates made it through: Jarrett Mitchell, Michelle Payne, Raj Patel & Matt Hayek. This is where the election gets really interesting. These last four candidates will compete for two at-large seats on the City Council on November 8th. While the at-large race is getting the most attention, there is another race in District A between Rick Dobyns and Stephen Soboroff. If you want to learn where the candidates stand, and how their positions may affect you and the Iowa City community, I encourage you to attend this candidate forum. Local politics is one of the places where the public’s voice can still be heard and respected. We here at Little Village write a lot about local politics and care about this city, so we want to encourage you to get involved and helping to make a positive change.
Plus, this will finish up in time to head down to the Yacht Club to check out
Dead Larry Going Away Party w/ Kinetix & Magic Beans // Iowa City Yacht Club // 8:00 PM // $7, 19+
Bands start in this town and can take one of two paths: keep their base here or move their base elsewhere. While there are certainly a number of bands that keep their roots solidly in the city’s confines, there are others that have found greater pastures outside. Dead Larry is one such example of the latter. After starting and holding down Iowa City for more than seven years with their psychedelic blend of funk and rock, the band is moving to the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Before they leave, they are going to play an final show on the stage of the Yacht Club, a place that they know very well. They will be accompanied by Kinetix and Magic Beans. This show starts sharply at 8:00 PM and will be a good opportunity for the fans to say goodbye for now (they’ll be back for New Year’s Eve).
One Million Yen Girl // Bijou Cinema // 7:00 PM // Free, All Ages
A part of the 7th Annual Japan Foundation Film Series: Young Starlets of Japanese Cinemas, One Million Yen Girl is a movie about a young woman named Suzuko. After being dealt a fairly bad hand, she decides that as soon as she gets one million yen ($10,000), she will leave her hometown. Rather than moving to one town and resettling, Suzuko becomes a drifter, getting a temp job, saving one million yen and then moving to the next town. She has no friends, but touches the lives of many around her. The question becomes this: do any of those people touch Suzuko? One Million Yen Girl is a sensitive, thoughtful movie about the young Japanese freeter generation that will resonate with those that can remember Slacker or the Beat Generation.
Smoking Popes w/ Emperor’s Club & Lipstick Homicide // The Mill // 8:00 PM // $8 Adv., $10 Day of Show; 19+
I need you to engage in a mental experiment with me. Put a Morrissey record (anything post-Smiths) on in your mind. Hear that smoothness and general awesomeness. Now, take that record off and put on a Rancid record. Listen to that. Let that sound sink in. Now, imagine Morrissey as the frontman for Rancid and you have a general idea of what Smoking Popes sound like: music for crooners sung in that manner but at punk speed. That’s a really awkward description, but it’s not as strange as it sounds. The band has good hooks and a solid grasp on what it means to be punk. Sharing the stage with Smoking Popes will be local up-and-comers Emperor’s Club, who just released an EP on Mission Freak Records, and Lipstick Homicide, who have an EP available over at their Bandcamp site. If you like power-pop/punk-pop, this is a show that you should definitely make your way to on Friday.
Robert Randolph & The Family Band w/ Ha Ha Tonka // Englert Theatre // 8:00 PM // $25, All Ages
If you read the print edition of this enterprise, you might have caught Craig Eley’s “The Haps” essay for this month where he tells a story about getting tickets in a parking lot to attend a Robert Randolph & The Family Band show. Though I don’t have a heartwarming tale about how I got into the show, I’ve seen this man play before, and his live show is full of energy and passion. With his mix of gospel, soul, funk, rock, and psychedelic music, Randolph can make an audience move with his extended jamming. While the tickets on this show are expensive, it’s a smart buy as Randolph and his band, which actually does contain his cousins, will give you a full return on your investment. Ha Ha Tonka, who has been travelling with Randolph, will be opening for this show.
Ex-Action Model CD Release Party w/ Postfontaine, Stephanie Rearick & Utopia Park // The Mill // 8:00 PM // $6, 21+
Brendan Hanks is a dude that plays in a band. I know you’re reading that sentence and thinking, so what? I know like eighteen dudes that play in bands right now. Brendan Hanks is the sole member of Ex-Action Model, a band that bridges the gap between the accessible, club music that can be danced to and the overly complicated, technology-heavy sound of IDM that you can’t dance to unless you want no one talking to you for somewhere between 2-5 years. This Saturday signals the end of two years of work for Ex-Action Model, as it will drop the full length album entitled Dropland. Celebrating this momentous occasion with Ex-Action Model will be Stephanie Rearick, Madison-based piano composer; Utopia Park, dance wizards from the magical land of Fairfield; and Postfontaine, a new ambient music project from the aforementioned Craig Eley. This will be a nice of slightly left-of-center music, but all of it will be worth your time.
North Liberty celebrates Iowans' least favorite time of year with a festival's-worth of physical, social and family-friendly events, including its first ice rink. Pre-registration begins Monday, Nov. 20.