We’re already over halfway through 2011. I wanted to highlight a few fine records I’ve gotten into so far. I wrote up a list of my favorite Iowa City releases for Little Village Magazine already, so I won’t be rehashing that, I’ll just single out some stellar releases and¬†unnecessarily¬†pigeon-hole and qualify them cause, why not?

Peaking Lights
936
Not Not Fun

Madison, Wisconsin’s Peaking Lights became a reggae band so gradually, I hardly even noticed. But now that they make the coolest, lemonade-sippin’, flip-flop-wearing drone music in the Western Hemisphere, you just have to have this thing spinning when things get chill, the sun starts going down and you begin to ironically roast vegan marshmallows–yeah I laid it on thick there, sorry. (more…)

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(Screen capture from “All The Sun That Shines” video)
One of the coolest collaborations Iowa City ever produced was the shifting collective known as Cuticle. Originally the brain child of Brenden O’Keefe (Nimby) and Daren Ho (ex-Raccoo-oo-oon, Driphouse), Cuticle has also been a trio with the added clout of Jeff Witscher (Rene Hell, Marble Sky, etc). Recently, most of the work has been done Witscher and O’Keefe (Ho will occassionaly Skype-in from NYC). Regardless of the construction, the results are usually pretty sweet. (more…)