Jack Lion w/ Tires and Alex Body
The Mill — Friday, Dec. 16 at 9 p.m.
Iowa City’s Jack Lion is releasing their third EP, Ion, and celebrating, as they did for their last, at The Mill. The party kicks off at 9 p.m. (doors at 8 p.m.) on Friday, Dec. 16 with opening acts Tires (Des Moines) and Alex Body (Iowa City).
“The Mill just feels like home for us,” drummer Justin LeDuc said in an email. “In the last couple of years, I don’t think Jack Lion has played at another venue in Iowa City with the exception of festival gigs.”
The most recent of those festival gigs was a performance at Gabe’s last month as part of the second annual Witching Hour festival.
“The ION EP was already finished and printed by the time the time of the festival,” LeDuc said, “and we didn’t actually play anything from the EP at Witching Hour. [Festival curator] Andre [Perry] stipulated that in order to be part of Witching Hour, we had to play an entirely new set of music to fit the theme of the event.”
“Our summers were busy,” he continued, “and when the fall rolled around, the task of creating 40 minutes of brand new music was daunting. We knew that we were going to have to accept a level of imperfection in these new tracks. Based on the response we received at Witching Hour, I think we proved to ourselves that we can indeed produce quality songs at a greater rate than we previously believed. To me, this challenge was the best part about playing the festival. We hope to sustain this level of output moving forward, and that will keep things interesting for us and our audiences.”
For this EP, LeDuc promises fans music that is “faster, louder and higher energy” than their earlier releases. He noted that “ION is also much more drum heavy and groove-oriented.” You can listen to “SRRNDR,” a track from ION, above.
ION is the closer to a series of three EPs. The first, JAC, was released in 2014; K L followed in early 2015. In addition to cassettes of ION, the band will have a compilation CD with all three EPs included available for purchase at Friday’s show.
Jack Lion is LeDuc on drums, Brian Lewis Smith on trumpet, keyboard and production and Drew Morton on bass, keyboard and vocals. Tickets to the release show at The Mill are $8.