Studio One

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Beach House are purveyors of dream pop- defined as moody and atmospheric music, with the focus on sonic textures, breathy vocals and introspective/existential lyrics.  The Baltimore band decided to simplify the arrangements of their songs for their fifth full-length record, Depression Cherry, getting back to the feel of their first two studio albums.  Beach House began in 2004 when Vassar College grad (and French-born) songwriter, vocalist and keyboard player Victoria Legrand met songwriter/guitarist Alex Scally in his native Baltimore.

IPR/Mark Simmet

Singer-songwriter Kate Kennedy performed for a receptive audience at the First United Methodist Church in Ames (her home base) on Sept. 12.  She was opening for The Mountain Goats at the Maximum Ames Music Festival event.  Kennedy has been writing songs for about eight years, and released her debut album in 2006.  She also released an album as Pennyhawk in 2009.  You can listen right here to Kate Kennedy live on Studio One Tracks!

IPR/Mark Simmet

Studio One Tracks featured a live performance from The Mountain Goats on Sept. 12.  It was the final show of a brief solo tour from Mountain Goats songwriter/vocalist/guitarist/pianist John Darnielle.  The Maximum Ames Music Festival headlining performance was very well received by an enthusiastic full house at the First United Methodist Church in Ames.  Many in the audience had come long distances to catch this intimate live set from The Mountain Goats.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer hangs out with acoustic country songwriter Mike Himebaugh.

Listen in below for his "Chicago twang" sound that's bound to draw a smile.

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Singer-songwriter Dan Bejar formed his band Destroyer in the mid-1990s in Vancouver, British Columbia.  He may or may not be amused by the fact that there are several other musical groups with the name "Destroyer." However, those are heavy metal and KISS tribute bands, so musically there can be no confusion with Bejar's indie rock sensibilities.  He is also known for his work with Vancouver's New Pornographers, which he joined after fronting Destroyer for a few years.  Bejar has continued writing, singing and playing with both bands.

IPR/Tony Dehner

On Sept. 3, the Waterloo-based power pop band TWINS played two energetic sets at the Kum & Go Theatre venue of the Des Moines Social Club.  Their sets included a generous selection of songs from their forthcoming third album, plus TWINS favorites and a great cover of a Nick Lowe song.  A good time was had by all, as they say, and you can hear what I mean when you listen to this podcast! 

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As I've been preparing for our Studio One Tracks live broadcast of The Mountain Goats this Saturday night (Sept. 12, beginning at 7:00 pm with opening act Kate Kennedy), I've come across many surprisingly varied ways that other writers have described John Darnielle's voice.  One of my favorites is from a Paste magazine scribe who wrote that The Mountain Goats' songs are "steadfastly proclaimed in (Darnielle's) geek who-lived-to-tell wail."  The writer liked  the singer's  voice, and so do I.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer talks with unique Moline, Illinois rock ensemble Minus Six.

Listen to and download the podcast below to find out how the group has successfully omitted guitar.

themynabirds.com

Lovers Know is the third full-length album from The Mynabirds, the band founded by singer-songwriter and keyboard player Laura Burhenn in 2009.  She had previously been one half of the Washington, D.C. duo Georgie James.  Burhenn signed to Saddle Creek Records and relocated to Omaha, Saddle Creek's home base.

In this special encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," Coralville native bluesman Kevin B.F. Burt chats with host Ben Kieffer.

Listen to Burt's powerful blues performances below.

Des Moines Social Club/Mickey Davis

After a summer break, the Studio One team is heading back to the Des Moines Social Club on Thursday, September 3rd! IPR's Mark Simmet will be spinning your daily soundtrack live from the Kum & Go Theater at the Social Club, and he'll be joined by the Waterloo band TWINS, who will be bringing their brand of high-energy rock and roll and performing songs from their upcoming third album! 

Gabriella Porter/thebirdandthebee.com

Inara George is the daughter of the late Lowell George of the band Little Feat.  She had already performed and recorded on her own before forming the Los Angeles-based duo The Bird And The Bee with musician/producer Greg Kurstin in 2006.  The two share an appreciation for jazz standards, sophisticated dance music, and well-constructed pop songs.  In fact, their previous full-length release was an album of Hall & Oates covers.  The new Recreational Love follows five years later, with ten new ear-pleasing indie pop songs.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer catches up with Quad Cities-based group EmJay.

Lend an ear below to some of EmJay's female-fronted neo soul/groove music.

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Blood is the second full-length album from Lianne La Havas.  La Havas was born in London to a Greek father and Jamaican mother and began singing at age seven.  Her father taught her piano and guitar basics, and she started writing songs at a young age.  La Havas signed to Warner Bros. Records in 2010, but took her time developing her skills before releasing any music.  Her debut album came out in 2012.  With the new follow-up record Blood, Lianne La Havas continues to write, sing and play smart, sophisticated songs in a jazzy neo-soul style.

IPR/Tony Dehner

Iowa native (from Allison) Miss Christine returned to the state for a string of live performances, including a set in IPR's Cedar Falls studios on Aug. 18.  The songwriter, vocalist and bassist is a graduate of Boston's Berklee College Of Music, and is now based in Nashville.  Miss Christine and her band played all the songs from the new EP Dichotomy plus much more, including a couple of well-done cover songs.  Have a listen!

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer will talk the  group Hipknosis.

Listen in below to hear the Iowa based group's straight forward approach to rock 'n' roll.

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Coming Home is the debut full-length album from Leon Bridges, the young soul singer, guitarist and songwriter from Fort Worth, Texas.  Bridges' music and visual image are very much in the tradition of early Marvin Gaye and Sam Cooke circa 1963.  It wasn't that long age that he was working as a dishwasher and playing open-mic nights around Fort Worth.  Bridges signed with Columbia Records last year, and began touring nationally this year.  Coming Home shows Leon Bridges to be utterly sincere in his approach to retro-soul.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer chats with singer-songwriter JD Eicher and his band, The Goodnights.

Listen in below for Eicher's crafty, introspective brand of pop-rock. 

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Kevin Parker founded  Tame Impala as his own home recording project in 2007.  The band continues to be his own very personal project, with Parker writing all the songs and performing all the music and vocals himself, plus producing and mixing.  He is joined be other musicians when Tame Impala tours.  Currents is the third full-length album from the Australian band, with more synths and a more dance-oriented approach this time around.  Parker's careful attention to detail has resulted in this buzz-worthy new record from Tame Impala.      

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer talks with Des Moines folk musician Ryne Doughty. 

Listen below for tunes that ooze with genuine, melancholy insight. 

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On July 16th, Wilco fans (and there are a lot of them around here) were pleasantly surprised by the sudden availability of a new Wilco album titled Star Wars.  ​Then again, it's been nearly four years since the last new studio album from the band, and the feeling was that a new record was overdue.  Star Wars became available as a free download via Wilco's website.  A CD version will be released in late August, and a vinyl version of the album is expected in late November.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer catches up with Chicago based singer-songwriter Dick Prall. 

Listen in below to the interesting tales Prall weaves with song. 

ezrafurman.com

Chicago musician and songwriter Ezra Furman began his career with the band Ezra Furman and the Harpoons.  They formed at Tufts University (near Boston) in 2006, and had a run that included three albums.  In 2012, Furman raised money through Kickstarter to record and self-release his first solo album.  He signed to a label and received great critical acclaim for his second album, particularly in the UK.  With album number three, Perpetual Motion People, Furman is really hitting his stride.

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer talks with Iowa's own country artist Chad Elliot. 

Listen to the hour long podcast for tracks off his album So Sang the Crow. 

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Bad Love is the third full-length album from the British indie-pop duo Summer Camp.  In addition to those three, the band also released a film soundtrack album last year for the teen movie documentary Beyond Clueless.  Multi-instrumentalist Jeremy Warmsley and vocalist Elizabeth Sankey are a married couple, and formed Summer Camp in October, 2009.  Although lyrically a bit dark, their music is influenced by 1960s girl groups and 1980s synth pop.  It qualifies as fine summertime listening!  

IPR/Tony Dehner

With the 80/35  Music Festival behind us for another year, some Iowa music fans may now be wondering, "Okay, what's next?" We're here to help! In this latest edition of the B-Side podcast, the Studio One team is joined by IPR's Lindsey Moon to talk about upcoming music festivals that are on our radar. And, as always, we want to hear from you! What festivals are you excited about? What festivals did we miss that we should know about? What advice do you have for festival attendees? Thanks!

IPR/Tony Dehner

The Des Moines independent hip hop group prettygirlhatemachine re-energized the IPR Stage Saturday afternoon!  Unfortunately, IPR's videographer had gone to offload video from previous performances and couldn't get back in time for their set.  However, we do have the audio- enjoy!

In this encore episode of IPR Studio One's "Java Blend," host Ben Kieffer talks with Manchester, Iowa native Susan Werner, whose widely varied musical style is steeped in all things Iowa. 

Listen in below for tracks off her album Hayseed. 

Matt Anderson

Hello Studio One Readers,

This coming weekend I will be attending the 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago for the first time. I will be documenting my first-timers' experience into a narrative podcast with my good friend and fellow music junkie, Jonathan Smith. I'm expecting the weekend to be insane, funny, stressful and joyous all at the same time.

IPR

We were joined early on Friday night at our free stage by Anna Gebhardt and Ryan Stier from the Des Moines band Annalibera, ahead of their amazing Saturday performance. The intimate setting was a terrific showcase for Anna's powerful vocals. We think you'll agree!

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