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On the Beat: Great things, small packages

Architecture in Helsinki’s brilliant 2003 debut album, Fingers Crossed, kicks off with a short, Casio and drum machine instrumental called “One Heavy February.” Unlike so many ultimately forgettable album intros (noise pulses, voice mails, carnival barking, string quartets, what have you), the song is a deliciously melodic twee dance number, and at just under a […]

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On the Beat: January 2011

In 1953, a guy named Pat Best wrote a song for his band The Four Tunes, called “I Understand (Just How You Feel)” a Pop/R&B crossover that broke into the top 10 on both charts. The original recording is fine, if a bit basic, but soon the song was covered by a slew of pop groups–Elvis even did a demo of it at one point. My favorite version is by The G-Clefs, who, in one of the world’s greatest (and earliest?) mashups, combined the song with that traditional New Year’s jam, “Auld Lang Syne.” […]

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On the Beat: Hometown sound

In Everything But The Girl’s “25th December” (one of those great non-Christmas Christmas songs that end up on “indie xmas” mix tapes), Ben Watt sings about the quintessential winter feeling: regret. “I’m thirty and I don’t know nothing no more,” he whines in the way that only British people can whine, thinking about old friends, […]

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On the Beat: Rock

The organization Rock the Vote was founded back in 1992 with the goal of mobilizing young people to exercise their elective franchise, with a PSA campaign involving musicians like Madonna and Michael Stipe telling young folks to get out there. Some 18 years later, the very phrase “rock the vote” has implications for Iowa City’s music-going public, especially younger people, as the City Council’s current War on Alcohol has left music venues feeling like collateral damage. […]

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Show Preview: Jay Farrar at The Mill, Nov. 3

Nov. 3 | 8:00 p.m. A founding member of perhaps the most important alt. country band of all time, Uncle Tupelo, Jay Farrar shared vocal and songwriting duties with future Wilco leader Jeff Tweedy. After the Tupelo split-up, Farrar went on to form the seminal alt. country rockers Son Volt. He continues to be an […]

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Ticket Giveaway: Kate Nash at The Englert, Nov. 8

Greetings music fans. Here’s the deal. We have two pairs of tickets to see Kate Nash at The Englert next week, and it can be yours if you manage to overcome the grueling challenge we’ve devised. To win the prize, email editor@littlevillagemag.com with “Kate Nash” in the subject line. Winners will be randomly selected out […]

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On the Beat: October’s bag of tricks

Best known for Halloween, its costume-and-trickery grand finale, October leaves almost everything to the imagination. The theme of surprise and disguise has also been a trend this year in local music promotion. With the rapidly changing venue scene, including new owners/bookers/venues, a bunch of shows popped up that had people saying, “Really? That show is happening there?.

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On the Beat: To New Beginnings

August is harvest season, and I don’t mean corn: It’s the annual time of year when we welcome the bountiful student population back to our small city. Whether or not you’ve been away, it’s worth noting that summer vacation has brought a few changes in the music landscape.

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Opinion: The Picador

The little club that everyone loves to gossip about was back on blast for the last few weeks, thanks to at least four events: 1, the place being put up for sale; 2, some slightly disparaging comments made by another LV writer, which in turn sparked an internet mini-flame war; 3, the fact that the […]

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On the Beat: Pick out the jams

It’s October, and there are a ton of shows to talk about, so insert funny Halloween joke here, followed by an apology about how I just didn’t write this column last month (how, I ask, did you know what shows to go to??), and then get on with the getting’ on. Jack-O-Lantern, fools! This month […]

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