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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.

Forever 40: Remembering Chris Street

An escape. They’re dramas. Plays. An act on the gridiron. A dance on the hardwood. Sports are so popular in today due to the world needing an outlet. A place to diverge our attention from the everyday life. Baseball, the national pastime. Football, the modern-day gladiators. Athletics are so popular due to their ability to create storylines. Magic vs Bird. Steelers and Cowboys. Yankees and Red Sox. Rivalries drive sports. But, even more so than rivalries, fans fall in love when the sports meet the outside world. Iowa has had the best of luck with these kinds of stories. Just … Continued

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Major League Baseball and its fans have heard it all before. There were sluggers like Mark McGwire, Jose Canseco and most recently Ryan Braun,  who captivated audiences nine innings at a time. Then there were the aces. The guys who threw fire out of their arms. I’m talking guys like Roger Clemens (although it’s still up in the air….) and Andy Pettitte who blew away batters one by one. This is what baseball was supposed to be. Monstrous home runs, blinding strikeouts and game winning hits are what we as baseball fans hope to see during the long 162 game … Continued

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As always, the Major League Baseball offseason has brought about several marquee free agent races. In December, former New York Yankee and perennial All-Star second baseman Robinson Cano signed with the Seattle Mariners for a 10-year deal worth a whopping $240 million, making it the fourth-largest contract in MLB history. Although the Yankees missed out on resigning the superstar, the Bronx Bombers picked up the biggest new name in free agency with the signing of Masahiro Tanaka, a Japanese right-handed pitcher who is poised to become an ace in the American League. The much-discussed Tanaka sweepstakes came to an end … Continued

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