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items tagged with RIBCO

Beautiful Suffering: Peter Wolf Crier, June 22 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2010-05-27 15:53:47

Peter Wolf Crier

Roughly 100 seconds into "Down Down Down," the third track on Peter Wolf Crier's debut Inter-Be, the drums kick in. That's the duo in microcosm, as Peter Pisano's fully formed guitar-and-vocal songs are amplified by the drums and other accents Brian Moen added relatively late in the process.

The band will perform a show at RIBCO on Tuesday, June 22, and the moral of the Peter Wolf Crier story is to follow things where they lead.

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Playing Rather Than Programming: Caribou, June 5 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2010-05-26 12:02:28

Caribou's Dan Snaith

Dan Snaith sounds tired of answering questions about math.

He comes from a family of mathematicians; he earned a Ph.D. in the field in 2005. And because he records and performs (under the name Caribou) electronic music, journalists (this one included) ask him a lot of questions about the relationship between his primary academic and musical pursuits. They both involve computers, don't they?

Snaith -- who will be playing with his band at a Daytrotter show at RIBCO on Saturday, June 5 -- said there are some similarities. But not many. "Being able to do what you want ... is kind of an intuitive process," he said in a phone interview last week. "In both mathematics and in music, you kind of have to use some gut-level intuition to piece things together. [But] I think they're very different in many ways."

What's evident listening to the music of Caribou is that Snaith's electronic instruments are largely tools, not ends. There are certainly electronic sounds, but the songs sound organic and feel handmade, and his singing voice is ethereal, warm, and emotive -- a perfect offset to any digital coolness. Put differently, there's nothing mathematical about Caribou's songs.

Read More About Playing Rather Than Programming: Caribou, June 5 At RIBCO...

Rigid Expectations: Against Me!, May 4 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2010-04-22 13:50:29

Against Me! Photo by Autumn de Wilde.

Against Me! has been selling out for the better part of a decade, so complaints about the polish of the band's forthcoming record are already tired to songwriter/vocalist/guitarist Tom Gabel.

Because Gabel is a punk icon and an anarchist, it was little surprise that there were negative reactions when the band jumped to a major label. But as it prepares to release White Crosses in June -- the group will play a show at RIBCO on May 4 -- Gabel talked about the challenge of being an ever-changing person in a world of rigid expectations.

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King for a Day ... or More: Caroline’s Spine, April 30 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2010-04-22 13:37:18

Caroline's Spine

When Caroline's Spine plays RIBCO on April 30, the guy behind the drum kit will likely be more familiar to the audience than the band itself. Greg Hipskind, the longtime drummer for the Quad Cities quartet Wicked Liz & the Bellyswirls, has been the touring drummer for Caroline's Spine since last fall.

The Phoenix, Arizona-based alt-rock group, led by singer/songwriter Jimmy Newquist, had a pair of albums on Hollywood Records in the late 1990s. "Sullivan," based on the true story of the five Sullivan brothers from Waterloo who died in World War II, was a modest hit. The band also had songs on the soundtracks to An American Werewolf in Paris and Varsity Blues in the company of Bush, Skinny Puppy, Green Day, Foo Fighters, Collective Soul, and Van Halen, among others.

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Farming the Middle Ground: Head for the Hills, March 19 at RIBCO
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2010-03-03 12:31:21

Head for the Hills

The self-titled album by Head for the Hills opens with "One Foot in the Grave," and its instrumentation and twangy harmonies are classic bluegrass. The next track is "Solar Bowling Shoes," and the title alone is a clue that the Colorado-based band has interests beyond tradition.

But the band really establishes its newgrass credentials on the instrumental "Nooks & Crannies," which -- aside from its eloquent melodies and nimble digressions -- brings in an electric mandolin at the four-minute mark. Its introduction offers a hint of rock-and-roll distortion, and it later adds some feedback, and finally it breaks away from any sense of tradition with a soaring solo. The instrument's use is transcendent, creating a bridge between bluegrass and rock.

The blending of those two genres is of course a hallmark of newgrass, and Head for the Hills -- performing March 19 at RIBCO -- is particularly adept at farming that expansive middle ground. There's nothing else on the album as quintessentially bluegrass as "One Foot in the Grave," and there's nothing as nontraditional as "Nooks & Crannies," but the remainder of the album is a testament to the band's alchemic skills.

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