Advertisement

Album Review: Public Property – Work to Do

Recorded in the famed Anchor Studios in Kingston, Jamaica, Public Property’s new album features some big-name contemporary reggae musicians like Toots Hibbert from Toots and the Maytals–who is playing with the band for their July 2 CD release show in Des Moines’ People’s bar–Ticklah from Dub Side of the Moon,and Elliot Martin, the lead singer from John Brown’s Body. The album also features a solo from Jake Shimabukuro, a man known as the world’s best ukulele player. […]

Read More…

Album Review: Noble Octopus | Noble Octopus

The Noble Octopus The Noble Octopus The Noble Octopus was started by Eric Rohn and friends at Grinnell College before moving to Iowa City. With the emphasis on clean guitar sounds and low-key vocals they recall the softer side of Yo La Tengo. The Steve Reich-esque looped guitar piece “Droplets and Isolations” immediately had me […]

Read More…

Album Review: Bowerbirds | Upper Air

Bowerbirds Upper Air Dead Ocean www.myspace.com/bowerbirds The sophomore release from North Carolina’s Bowerbirds opens simply and unassumingly with an acoustic guitar and the voice of lead singer Phil Moore. Upper Air isn’t making a grand statement, nor is it declaring a grand departure from the group’s debut Hymns for a Dark Horse, it is quietly calling […]

Read More…

The White Tornado: Album Review

The White Tornado Seek Shelter www.white2rnado.com The White Tornado is keyboardist Bill Peterson, who’s been playing shows around Iowa City for some time. Seek Shelter, his debut record, showcases his facility with the piano and organ, not to mention his puckish sense of humor. Stylistically he’s not stuck in any one genre for long, but two […]

Read More…

Album Review: Porno Galactica – MixTape Vol. 1

Before Metallica and Napster ever butted heads, people used to venture
out and by their music on something called compact discs. Then, came
the era of the download. Now, artists like Porno Galactica can spread
their music without having to busk out on the pavement. Porno
Galactica, consists of Don and Phil Rabalais. They have made their
first release, Mixtape Vol. 1 directly available to anyone with an
internet connection and a computer. The release doesn’t sound like
anything you’d expect from Fairfield, Iowa. […]

Read More…

Album Review: N.A.S.A. – Spirit of Apollo

In the late 1990s, a new phenomena proliferated through commercial hip hop. Deejays began releasing albums overloaded with guest vocals and uninspired tunes. If you were a fan of rap music it was hard to escape this constant barrage of “exclusive” albums. Most were 15 tracks too long and you could tell every emcee was more concerned about the paycheck than the rhymes. […]

Read More…

Album Review: Deer in the Night | Po' Girl

Po’ Girl Deer in the Night www.pogirl.net [audio:http://www.pogirl.net/deer/deer.mp3] Canada is, like, this whole other country. They apparently are secretly responsible for about half of the music we think of as American. Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen? All Canadian. Comes now Po’Girl–two women, Awna Texeira, and Allison Russell, one Torontonian, one Quebecois–sneaking across at Windsor, […]

Read More…

Album Review: Soul on Display | Bonne Finken

Bonne Finken Soul on Display www.bonnefinken.com It takes some gut for a white girl from Knoxville, Iowa, to use “Soul” in her debut CD’s title. But Finken can, as they say in the parlance, bring it. She has a voice and delivery with the buttery depth of Annie Lennox, the effortless blues edge of Bonnie […]

Read More…

CD Review: She Swings She Sways – Wasted Love Songs

She Swings She Sways Wasted Love Songs www.sheswingsshesways.com A common sophomoric “insight” into music is that we only have 12 notes, and that this imposes some upper limit on the possibility of musical expression. It’s not like it’s hard to demolish this idea with combinatorial mathematics, but both the argument and refutation are beside the […]

Read More…

Unknown Component – In Direct Communication CD Review

Unknown Component In Direct Communication Self Released [audio:unknown_component_its_a_fine_line.mp3] Unknown Component – Its a Fine Line (mp3) Keith Lynch is a local singer-songwriter that has never done things the usual way, starting with his chosen stage name Unknown Component, which suggests an electronica act, or a band at least, but it’s just Keith, his guitars, and […]

Read More…

Mint Wad Willy – A History of Guns and Liars CD Review

Mint Wad Willy A History of Guns and Liars Self Released [audio:mint_wad_willy_god_bless_america.mp3] Mint Wad Willy – God Bless America (mp3) Mint Wad Willy’s debut album “A History of Guns and Liars” definitely has a Southern Rock vibe to it. The dominant instrumental sound is artfully sloppy, distorted slide guitar. When I first listened to it, […]

Read More…