Hello! It’s another busy week here in Iowa City. Rather than writing long, somewhat obtuse intros, I’m going to start these columns with events that are going to be alright, but didn’t make the cut for the column. This week, I have two things. First, underground producer and MC Blueprint is going to be at Gabe’s on Friday spitting heat (6:00 PM // $8, All Ages). On the same day, there will be a free show over at the Blue Moose with The Envy Corps & The Olympics (8:00 PM // 19+). Alright, with that business out of the way, let’s tell you about what events get extended explanations this week.
Poison Control Center // Englert Theatre // 8:00 PM // $5, All Ages
This weekend, the Englert Theatre celebrates its 99th anniversary. The opening show for this celebration of a cultural landmark will feature The Poison Control Center. Veterans of the various clubs in Iowa City as well as the Mission Creek Festival, PCC’s blend of rock and pop has gained them considerable attention from the critical world and a large fan base, locally and regionally. This is an intimate show, meaning that they will be playing on the stage. According to the Englert, the band will be performing a special set, meaning that this will be a special show for the first timer as well as the seasoned fan of PCC. As I said at the beginning, this is only the first show of three for this weekend. Country-folk songstress Iris Dement will be playing with Bo Ramsey on Friday ($25, All Ages) and local singer-songwriter Pieta Brown will be playing on Saturday (Sold Out). This weekend will be an awesome display of talent and reminder of the importance of the Englert in Iowa City’s art scene.
Anna Vogelzang w/ Grand Tetons & Bree Nettie // The Mill // 9:30 PM // $6, 19+
Hailing from Madison, WI, multi-instrumentalist Anna Vogelzang is someone who is very familiar to those that keep up with the local music scene here in Iowa City as she has played here a few times in recent memory. For those who are unfamiliar, Vogelzang has a style that is based in the traditions of the folk genre (sincere lyrics, simple instrumentation) while taking a decidedly modern approach to her lyrics and approach. While I was generally skeptical, I caught her this past Wednesday at Little Village Live and was thoroughly impressed by both her music, her voice and her height as she is rather tall. She played a cover of Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance,” which was excellent, and also spoke of an Ace of Base cover. If you want to hear the “Bad Romance” cover, you can download the LV Live podcast. If you want to get your hands on advance copies of her new album Canary in a Coal Mine or see her perform, you’ll have to go to The Mill. With local band Grand Tetons and solo songwriter Bree Nettie in support, this is a show that will be a nice start for a weekend from a rather mellow week.
Priscilla Ahn // Gabe’s // 6:30 PM // $10, All Ages
While she is a newer voice in the singer-songwriter scene, Priscilla Ahn is a voice that has to be paid attention to. While her style is traditional, her lyrics are whimsical and dreamy. She has the ability to take the listener to a completely different world with her singing as she tells stories from her rather interesting life story as a Korean-American who has been chasing the dream of being a singer. Her voice reminds me of a less husky Hope Sandoval. It’s clear and strong while still having clear hints of beauty and vulnerability. In other words, it is a voice that is perfect for folk music. Travelling to support her new, well-received album When You Grow Up, Ahn will be playing an early show at Gabe’s. This is a show for the folk fans, the dreamers, the lonely teens, and the fans of people that can sing utterly beautiful songs.
Yacht Club Rises From The Ashes World Tour // Iowa City Yacht Club // 9:00 PM // $7, 19+
No, you’re not reading the first part of that wrong. The Iowa City Yacht Club, the club that got filled with water from the fire at Bruegger’s a couple of weeks ago will be reopening. Being the intrepid journalist that I am, I found out that there was not much fire damage but there was a considerable amount of water damage. As well, the sound equipment was not heavily damaged by the firefighting efforts. As a result, the club has been working hard to get the doors open again. This Friday will be the first time that the Yacht Club will have a concert since that fire. For its first show, the Ann Arbor band The Macpodz will be having a CD release show with Boulder’s Jet Edison. Both bands work in the space between jazz, funk, and straight-ahead rock and will deliver the jams. If you want to dance, this is the place to go. If you want to show support for your local arts, this is also the place to go.
Jaime & Gilbert Hernandez // Shambaugh Auditorium, UI Main Library // 7:30 PM // Free, All Ages
This weekend, the Comics, Creativity and Culture: Graphic Language symposium is taking place on the University of Iowa campus. The main speech of the Saturday session will be from Los Bros Hernandez. Creators of the popular (and legendary) Love and Rockets, these two men mix science fiction, punk rock, and a loving grasp of humanity with a clear, expressive black and white visual style. Thanks to their storytelling and artistic abilities, Los Bros Hernandez have become legends in the comics world, developing a devoted fan base that only grows as it delves deeper and deeper into a catalogue of work that could only be rivaled by The Fall. As I said, this is the event on Saturday; there are events all throughout the weekend. A full schedule of events and talks can be found at the Comics, Creativity and Culture website.
I Saw The Devil // Englert // 12:00 AM // Free for UI Students, $3 General Admission; 18+
I’m going to end this week with a challenge. For those that have watched the Saw movies and thought that they were child’s play or generally, to quote A Clockwork Orange, have a taste for a bit of the old ultra-violence, go see I Saw The Devil. Directed by Kim Jee-woon and starring Oldboy’s Choi Min-sik and The Good, The Bad and The Weird’s Lee Byung-hun, I Saw The Devil adds to a long tradition of intense, unrelentingly violent Korean horror movies. In this movie, there is a serial killer (Choi) on the loose. On a snowy night, he kills a motorist on the side of the road. The motorist is the wife of a special agent (Lee) who commits his life to catching the killer. The movie gets interesting because he catches the murderer very early, but rather than kill him, the agent lets him go. This begins a game of cat-and-mouse between the killer and the agent. Although the movie is extremely violent, the violence helps to tell a story about morality and how easily it can be lost. Like I’ve said numerous times, I Saw The Devil is not for the weak of heart. If you are wondering if you can take it, watch the trailer for the film and decide for yourself.
Yet another active weekend. With the exception of I Saw The Devil, it could have, actually, been a very peaceful one. I hope that you have an awesome weekend. Also, last thing, I am DJ’ing at First Friday at the Englert. I have no idea of what I’m spinning, but I can guarantee that I will not lose the smooth. The event starts at 5 PM. Come by and say hello.
Do you have an event that you want to see here? Email Weekender@LittleVillageMag.com with dates and details!