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Album Review: Dryad — The Silurian Age

The metal scene in Iowa City has always been a pocket universe where the boundary between fans and musicians is permeable. It’s like the bar in Cheers — where everybody knows your name — but with more long hair, tattoos and black leather. The competition between bands is to be the loudest, heaviest and tightest, not the most successful. […]

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Album Review: Good Morning Midnight — Both Neither and Both

Both Neither And Both by Good Morning Midnight Good Morning Midnight is a band unafraid to wear its influences proudly. On Both Neither And Both, the song “Ballerina” has the low-slung slyness of mid-tempo Nirvana, and “Dynamite Head” has a chugging, breakbeat rhythm that recalls Creation bands like Swervedriver and the Boo Radleys. A rock […]

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Album Review: Ben Driscoll — Earthly Remains

Doing due diligence on Ben Driscoll — whose name I know mostly from live performances on KUNI FM — I turned up an article from 2015 in the Cedar Rapids Gazette that calls him a “former musician” and describes his Cedar Rapids woodworking business. Lucky for us, news of his demise as a musician is greatly exaggerated. […]

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Album Review: Anthony Worden — Slouching Towards Tomorrow

AJ Worden’s Slouching Towards Tomorrow is inescapably tied to musical touchstones of the ’60s and ’70s, particularly Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground. It is wrong to say that his music is derivative of those influences, even as the listener can’t escape noticing them. Like Borges’ poet Menard, his project is a fresh creation in a new context; instead of 1965 New York, Worden lives in 2018 Iowa.

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Album Review: William Elliott Whitmore — Kilonova

Will Whitmore has been performing and making albums since the turn of the millennium, always faithful to his own idea of what makes a song that sticks. He writes songs that are simple and devastating. His voice, as it did even when he was in his 20s, sounds not just older than his years, but as though it comes from a different century. […]

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Dead Rider’s Todd Rittman talks David Bowie, layered lyrics and Flat Black Studios ahead of Grey Area

Dead Rider is a Chicago rock band made up of Todd Rittman (formerly of Chicago noise rockers U.S. Maple); Andrea Faught on trumpet and keys; and drummer Matt Espy. While their sound is heavy on guitar and drums, keyboard plays a big part, and they seem to wind their own path between rock, jazz and Tortoise-style experimental rock. […]

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Album Review: Byrn Paul — Dual Wielder

If you are a fan of guitar virtuosity, don’t bother reading the rest of this review; just go buy this album. Byrn Paul has put in the hours of practice to become a master of the instrument. There’s nothing left out of Dual Wielder because it was too hard to play. If you’re a fan of math rock and the viola da gamba — and who isn’t? — this is the only album you can buy this year that scratches that itch. […]

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Nevāda Nevada brings Kathryn Musilek home to Iowa City

Former Iowa Citian/current Brooklynite Kathryn Musilek still finds time for her music, though, and her band Nevāda Nevada just released *Wild and Glowing*, a six-song mini-album. They’ll be appearing at the Trumpet Blossom Cafe Sunday, June 3 (cover is $5). […]

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