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Music Staff Picks: The Best Releases of April

billy woods – Aethiopes On Aethiopes, billy woods reestablishes his strengths as a storyteller, with help from producer Preservation’s experimentally jazzy beats. By now, woods has cemented himself as one of hip hop’s greatest writers, and his brooding yet clever introspection sounds especially powerful over Preservation’s musical backdropping. Samples of pianos will twinkle across some tracks, and pound discordantly on others, while electric guitars ring and horns blow. By the time the harmonica enters the equation, the beats here are unparalleled. It is an enveloping atmosphere completed by excellent percussion, which moves between hand drums, full kits, and shuffling jangles … Continued

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Soccer Mommy Hints at New Sound at Mission Creek Festival

Overall, Soccer Mommy earned the headline spot at Mission Creek Festival with their bright-sounding indie underpinning the deeper, darker meaning looming in the lyrics. Sometimes, Forever releases June 24th and can be pre-ordered through her website. 

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On Cloud Nine with Beach Bunny

Beach Bunny had had their first performance of their tour at the Englert Theatre. The theater quickly filled with excited young bodies thrilled to see Beach Bunny live.

The atmosphere at the Englert Theatre on April 4 couldn’t have been more appropriate for a concert. Patrons lined from the doors all the way to the Ped Mall. All of this, in anticipation for Grizzly Bear’s return to Iowa City for the first time since 2007. Grizzly Bear is currently touring with Owen Pallett in support of their hailed album Shields (2012). Started as the project of guitarist/keyboards/vocalist Ed Droste in 2002, they have since become Daniel Rossen, Chris Bear, and Chris Taylor who together create one of the most respected bands around today. With four studio albums and … Continued

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Grizzly Bear is one of those bands that continue to stand out by creating an engaging auditory experience. Their breakout album Veckatimist was lauded by music fans and critics alike, and it is probably safe to say Shields will follow suit. Shields is unique in that it doesn’t have a standout track, the quality is inherent in every song; each has its own handsome virtues. The single “Yet Again” is arguably the most accessible song on the album, but it still maintains the haunting aura the album strives for. From the moment the album begins with “Sleeping Ute,” it is … Continued

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By Eric Intlekofer Walk the Moon’s set at the Blue Room at the Blue Moose Tap House proved that they are a band you will be hearing from in the future. Following their appearances at this year’s Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza, they’ve embarked on a nationwide tour in support of their debut album I Want! IWant! and have been gaining recognition as an upcoming indie-pop act. Despite there being fewer people than I expected at the show, the Cincinnati quartet hit the stage with the typical enthusiasm one can expect from their energetic performances. The floor of the Blue Room was … Continued

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By Eric Intlekofer There is a quality in Portugal. The Man that all music lovers can admire, or at least respect, and that is their ability to put out a consistent record every year. With “In the Mountain In the Cloud,” the Alaska and Portland based band moved to a major label, many a music fan’s nightmare. This time around, however, that chance is not to be feared. Their style has not been compromised, in fact it’s been honed. Their sixth LP seems to be a culmination of the forward progress the band has been working on for the past … Continued

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