The Des Moines-based band The River Monks formed in 2010 with founding members Ryan Stier, Nicholas Frampton and Joel Gettys. Current members also include Drew Rauch, Mallory Heggen and Tommy Boynton. Their second album, Home Is The House could aptly be summed up by a phrase they have used to describe their sound: "wistful harmonious megafolk." The River Monks combine beautiful vocal harmonies, intriguing songwriting and creative use of traditional folk instrumentation on the new album.
Our IPR 80/35 Showcase series of live in-studio performances concluded on June 26, with two more fine sets. Des Moines-based singer-songwriter Max Jury played keyboard and sang songs from his Something In The Air EP, as well as a haunting Neil Young cover. Also from Des Moines, Dustin Smith and his new band The Maytags played a soulful set of new songs. The Maytags EP, Nova, was recorded in Nashville and will be out this fall. Enjoy these 80/35 Showcase performances here!
The IPR 80/35 Showcase series on Studio One continued on June 25 with two more bands performing live in our Cedar Falls studios. The Des Moines/Davenport-based band Brother Trucker made a return visit, previewing their upcoming July 4 main stage appearance at 80/35. Brother Trucker's solid Americana set included songs from their forthcoming fifth album. Later, Des Moines' Cirrus Minor made their live Studio One debut, with their exciting progressive/alternative sound, including songs from the band's latest album, The Division of Space.
Singer and Songwriter Jolie Holland has been making music since the 1990s. Her new album 'Wine Dark Sea' is this week's CD of the Week on IPR's Studio One. IPR's Clay Masters spoke with Holland soon after she finished recording the album.
Singer-songwriter Jolie Holland was born in Houston, Texas, and has also lived in San Francisco and Vancouver, where she was one of the founding members of The Be Good Tanyas. In her solo work, she has drawn inspiration from different genres of roots music to create her own unique sound. Holland's fifth studio album, Wine Dark Sea, blends elements of folk, blues, R&B, and vocal jazz to great effect.
Our IPR 80/35 Showcase series continued on June 19, with two more live sets in our Cedar Falls studios. Des Moines' Gloom Balloon (Patrick "Tape" Fleming and Chris Ford) played songs from their debut album You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Disaster/ Fix The Sunshine Pts 1-7 (An Ode To Bill Doss) and more, including some new material that they will be performing on the Main Stage at 80/35 on July 4.
When I talk to record companies and music promoters, and the subject turns to the 80/35 Music Festival, it quickly becomes apparent that the annual Des Moines festival has come to be regarded as an example of “getting it right.” Around the country, weekend music festivals do not always succeed, and as we excitedly anticipate the seventh year of 80/35, props to the Des Moines Music Coalition and project manager Amedeo Rossi and his staff!
Our series of IPR 80/35 Showcase live sets began on June 16 with two Des Moines bands performing live on Studio One. The River Monks were first out of the gate, playing songs from their new album Home Is The House, with a sound they have described as "wistful harmonious megafolk." Holy White Hounds came on later in the evening, demonstrating that sonically, and also in terms of attitude, they are a rock 'n' roll band. You can hear both great performances here!
The music of tUnE-yArDs is filled to the brim with interesting audio ideas and sounds, as befits a band that spells its name in such a quirky, stylistic fashion. tUnE-yArDs is the project of New England native Merrill Garbus in collaboration with bassist and frequent co-writer Nate Brenner. Garbus went to Haiti to study drumming, bringing some intricate polyrhythms to the band's third full-length album, Nikki Nack. The new record is as creative and vibrant as past tUnE-yArDs releases have been, yet more accessible this time out.
Thank you for your pledge of support to keep the blues bus rollin' down Blue Avenue. If you haven't made that investment in the program yet, we can take your call at 800-971-8815 or pledge right here on the IPR website.
WILLIAM CLARKE-BLOWIN' THE FAMILY JEWELS (EXCERPT)
EDEN BRENT-EVERYBODY ALREADY KNOWS
CHARLIE MUSSELWHITE-AS THE CROW FLIES
JIM SUHLER-LEAVE MY BLUES BEHIND
LISA MANN-THE BLUES IS MY MEDICINE
SHAUN MURPHY-CRY TO ME
BARRELHOUSE CHUCK-K & C BOOGIE (EXCERPT)
FRANK BEY & THE ANTHONY PAULE BAND-I'M LEAVIN' YOU
Upside Down Mountain is the latest album from Omaha native Conor Oberst. In addition to records released under his own name, he has been a member of several other bands, most notably Bright Eyes. Oberst has a very distinctive voice; both the sound of it and his literary voice. Commenting on the new album, he said: "For me, language is a huge part of why I make music.
Lily Henley’s “Words Like Yours” is the latest CD to arrive in my mailbox, seemingly out of nowhere, and knock my socks off. It actually arrived from New York, by way of a promoter in Seattle, but its roots span continents.
Studio One will be bringing you exclusive IPR recordings of live sets from the 2013 80/35 Festival during the week of June 9. As we gear up for this year's festival, we'll revisit some great sets from bands that performed last year! You can hear the live sets during the 7:00 hour of Studio One. Here's the schedule:
Monday, June 9 Water Liars (from Oxford, MS)
Tuesday, June 10 Escondido (from Nashville, TN)
Wednesday, June 11 Strange Names (from Minneapolis, MN)
Thursday, June 12 Prissy Clerks (from Minneapolis, MN)
The Iowa band The Host Country have expanded from the original duo of Ty Wistrand (guitar, vocals) and Diana Garles (keyboards, vocals), to a four-piece group with bassist Tom Rue and drummer Ethan Weishaar. On June 2, they brought their full band, folk rock sound and wonderful harmony vocals to IPR's Cedar Falls studios for a live broadcast on Studio One. The Host Country played songs from their brand new full-length release, Walk Away. Enjoy this podcast of their set!
Katy Goodman was the bassist in the Brooklyn-based punk trio Vivian Girls. That band called it quits earlier this year, making it possible for Goodman to devote all her attention to La Sera, the side project she had started in 2009. A variety of different players have joined her for each La Sera album. Hour of the Dawn is the third full-length release, showcasing Goodman's songwriting and very appealing indie garage-pop sound.