IHearIC is lovely. In a nutshell, it’s an evening variety hour at the Englert highlighting local talent of all sorts. I was in attendance last week was charmed by the intimate setting – the audience sitting at candlelit bistro tables only feet from the performers showcased. This particular show featured students of the University’s school of music as well as some of Iowa City’s favorite local performers. Included were Olivia Rose Muzzy, Paleo, Chaircrusher, Emily Rolka , Ex-Action Model, and the Secret Three. These performances spanned a wide spectrum of music ranging from fusions of jazz and punk, folk, classical masterpieces, and synth and digital music.
Olivia Rose Muzzy, whom I’ve seen perform original music on numerous occasions, laid a little Bach on us in preparation for her senior recital. Whether playing her own music or that of the masters, she certainly can make a bass sing. Good luck to her as she approaches graduation.
Paleo joined us before setting off on tour, accompanied by Skye Carrasco and Mike Reinheimer. These local musicians are headed to SXSW for a bit and will be swinging back up our way to perform at the Mill on April 3rd. It’s always a pleasure to sit and soak up Paleo’s comforting voice and thoughtful lyrics. Adding Mike and Skye’s talents to the mix is the cherry on top.
Emily Rolka is another student of the School of Music who performed. Her performance was lovely and seemed effortless. The music was a story in itself and I was quite impressed with the skill, tenderness and fury with which Emily brought it to life.
Chaircrusher, none other than Little Village’s own Kent Williams, woke me – and the rest of the audience – right up from our classical music trance with his melodies and cacophonies made by a synthesizer that was born in the late 60s. Having rescued it from a long eternity in the basement of a local school, Chaircrusher has proven that this device that looks like a circa-1968 NASA control panel still has a lot of kick in it.
Ex-Action Model continued the digital music extravaganza with an original composition that felt a lot like being in Shangri-La inside a MacBookPro. My ears kinda blissed out and got lost in the music. Check his stuff out.
Any relaxation that I achieved during his set was happily and enthusiastically blasted out of me by the Secret Three. This jazz-punk explosion is credited to local musical favs (of mine) Pete Balestrieri, Joe Ross and Brad Highnam. With drums, guitar and sax, these fellas tore down my definition of jazz and rebuilt it into something far more beautiful and insane. I demand they do it again soon.
IHearIC will have their next show sometime in early April, after the dusts of Mission Creek have settled. For $5, this is an unbeatable way to spend an evening.