Catch some traditional folk and some folk rock at the Mill this Thursday with Charlie Parr and Ark Life

Ark Life
Ark Life recently performed in Iowa City as part of the 2014 Mission Creek Festival. — Lindsay Giles McWilliams

Charlie Parr w/ Ark Life

The Mill — Thursday, Sept. 18 at 9 p.m.

Fans of both the traditional and rockin’ sides of folk music are gonna have a good night at The Mill this Thursday, as Charlie Parr and Ark Life cross paths on two respective tours. Both acts have been known to play Iowa City fairly regularly, and a shared bill just about guarantees an excellent show all around.

Ark Life began as a short-term side project for These United States’ Jesse Elliot (a former University of Iowa student body president) during a brief stay in Denver before a more permanent move to New York. Upon gathering the other four members of the band, however, Elliot decided to stay in Denver and focus on Ark Life more seriously. The quintet released their first full-length record, The Dream of You and Me, in August after a year of heavy touring.

The group leans harder on classic rock influences than the alt-country sound These United States specialized in. Citing influences as disparate as Thao Nguyen and Creedence Clearwater Revival, Ark Life still boasts Elliot’s excellent lyrical stories, but doubles-down on a dusty, swaggered-out rock sound, contrasted by gorgeous three-part harmonies.

Thursday’s show marks the second Ark Life show in Iowa City this year, as the five-piece played an opening slot for the sold-out Of Montreal during the Mission Creek Festival. That was a pretty wild set to be sure, but with a full-length record under their belt, Thursday’s show could prove to be even better. The show begins at 9 p.m. with a ticket price of $15.

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