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items tagged with Pat Stolley

Navigating a Journey: The Multiple Cat, “Intricate Maps”; February 12 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2016-02-05 11:26:43

Quad Cities musician and engineer Pat Stolley is not a good interview. He’s plain-spoken and blunt, and when asked last week about the origins of Intricate Maps – the new album from his band The Multiple Cat – his answer couldn’t be more ordinary and pragmatic: “I had a band that was doing stuff.”

In the past, the singer/songwriter/guitarist said, he had difficulty keeping a band together, with people moving away or being less than reliable. But following 2013’s The Return of the Multiple Cat, he had a solid ensemble that wanted to keep working. So it was as simple as the confluence of writing songs and having interest from the local label Cartouche Records in putting them out.

Chalk up Stolley’s manner to preferring creation over discussion. Starting with the opening seconds of lead tracks “Maps” and “David,” the record is dense with pop rock that is precise, detailed, and economical but also organically vital and often joyously catchy.

And while the eight tracks that fit that description would be plenty rewarding, the three “Theme”-titled pieces bridge songs and help shape Intricate Maps into a dynamic, breathing album. Listening to the record’s carefully modulated flow, it’s difficult to take Stolley at his word that his limited time dictates that he use just about everything he writes; it’s a triumph of songwriting, instrumentation, and arrangement dovetailing with smart sequencing and evocative connective tissue.


Read More About Navigating A Journey: The Multiple Cat, “Intricate Maps”; February 12 At Rozz-Tox...


A Restless Spirit: Brooks Strause Plays the Devil’s Advocate in Song; October 23 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2015-10-15 11:38:44

Photo by Laura Heath

“It was not really a comfortable situation,” said Brooks Strause. “It was okay. It worked well, and it was worth it artistically.”

Such dull words suggest a mundane departure for a musician – an experimental song, the dipping of a toe into a new stylistic stream. But Strause – the prolific 34-year-old singer/songwriter from Muscatine now based in Iowa City – is not nearly so timid.

He was, in fact, talking about having a bucket of actual lamb’s blood dumped on him for a photo shoot for his second album. Differences in animal aside, Strause volunteered to be Carrie White – and it was his idea.

In that photo, Strause is foregrounded and exhaling smoke, with a couple clutching each other in the background. The concept, he said, “represented love in a way I haven’t seen it represented that much,” which made it a good match for the Strause-ian love songs that made up his album Dead Animals (whose first release was housed, it should be said, in actual animal fur).

In case you’re curious, Strause said “there wasn’t really time” for second thoughts at the shoot: “This photograph has to get done. Let’s do it.” And “it was kind of surprising – the texture. I definitely got some in my mouth very quickly. It wasn’t really as gross as I thought it was going to be.”

So he’s human after all – although that’s not necessarily apparent from the flood of work he’s been producing. His seventh album, the richly rewarding The Chymical Wedding of Brooks Strause, was released this month, and he’ll be performing October 23 at Rozz-Tox. Dead Animals was reissued earlier this year by the Maximum Ames label, and 2014 saw two new full-lengths, Acid Casual and Renaissance Beast.

Oh, but there’s more. He has a rock/folk opera, an album of electronic music, and a solo-acoustic record in various stages of completion, and he’s written all the songs for his next rock-and-roll outing with his band The Gory Details – with whom he’ll share the stage at Rozz-Tox.


Read More About A Restless Spirit: Brooks Strause Plays The Devil’S Advocate In Song; October 23 At Rozz-Tox...


A Little Out of Whack in the Right Way: The Multiple Cat, June 14 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2013-06-11 13:35:18

The Multiple Cat

The Return of the Multiple Cat represents the first set of new material from Pat Stolley’s band The Multiple Cat in a dozen years, but the man has hardly been slothful.

As a founder and a member of bands, Stolley was intimately involved in the Quad Cities-based Future Appletree label – active for half a decade starting in 2002. And from Daytrotter.com’s beginning in 2006 to summer 2008, he was the Web site’s primary recording engineer; he estimated he’s logged roughly 800 Daytrotter sessions and still typically records between 12 and 24 a month.

That experience, he said last week, took a toll. “For a while there, I was so depressed about music in general because of having worked for Daytrotter and seeing the amazing amount of bands and stuff out there – how much noise there is out there. It makes you just want to pick up your toys and go home.

“But then there’s this other thing: I don’t really have a choice. I’m going to keep writing songs and recording them, whether anyone is going to listen to it or not.”


Read More About A Little Out Of Whack In The Right Way: The Multiple Cat, June 14 At RIBCO...





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