villin weekly: December 25-31

August Gonzalez Playlist

villin weekly features music from artists playing shows around Iowa, in addition to some of the best new music from the state’s local and homegrown talent. (Cover photo: August Gonzalez)

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Mr. Softheart feat. Halen “Magnolia”

“Magnolia” is the opening track from Mr. Softheart’s new full-length release titled Magdalene In Crisis. This song features Halen, whose background vocals lend the song a certain quality of depth… I’m going to call it gothic, but by no means is it goth. It’s sort of atmospherically dark, with synth and biting guitars alongside it. Elsewhere, the album strays from this style a little and does include some older work along with new releases. One song I’m thinking of with that is a personal favorite of mine from the band called “Caravaggio.” A few months ago the band played a set of Cramps covers for Halloween, and that sort of inspiration is definitely felt elsewhere on the release. You can hear a bit of that in a track like “Laughing at the Future” or even in their cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “State Trooper,” which is another standout.

Lily DeTaeye Host Country Des Moines

Lily DeTaeye “Hive Mind”
The Host Country “We All Die Alone”

Lily DeTaeye and the Host Country will be performing Saturday, December 30 at xBk Live in Des Moines.

Connecting with Lily a few months back, she shared some thoughts behind the title track from her latest release, Hive Mind, detailing the patterns in her life that surrounded the creation of the song and how they relate to a broader search for meaning and certainty amid highly uncertain times. Read more about that here.

Kathryn Severing Fox xBk Des Moines

Kathryn Severing Fox “Summer Moon”

Kathryn Severing Fox will be hosting a release show for her debut album, Sweet Beginnings, Thursday, December 28 at xBk Live in Des Moines, with (her duo with Chad Elliott) Weary Ramblers also performing.

Last month, Avery Gregurich interviewed Fox for an IPR profile, revealing “a classically-trained strings player and songwriter who has toured internationally as a part of the crossover string production Barrage 8, and has performed live and in the studio with artists such as Pharrell Williams, The Beach Boys, and George Benson.” Read that article here.

Blues & Brews New Year’s Eve Party xBk Des Moines

Stutterin’ Jimmy & the Goosebumps “Brought to You in Mono”
The Other Brothers “The Clementine”

Stutterin’ Jimmy & the Goosebumps and the Other Brothers will be performing Sunday, December 31 at xBk Live in Des Moines.

Marmot Leftys Des Moines

Marmot “The Wolf and I”

Marmot will be performing with Dire Wake and Blocko (DJ set) Friday, December 29 at Lefty’s in Des Moines.

319 Showcase Cedar Rapids CSPS Hall

August Gonzalez feat. Jay Wetterling “SEE TMRW”
Beav E “Won’t Change”

CSPS Hall in Cedar Rapids will be hosting a large rap and hip-hop showcase Saturday, December 30 featuring Not Casey, SamTom, 3&D, TKO, Ouuno, Aye Lil Day, Beav E, VSA Chucky 333, Moodaxo, Mannydasavage, Meechie Devito, August Gonzalez, Jay Pharaoh, TheZeffsterr, and 319’s Finest.

Medicine Place & Viskus “RUN IT UP”

“RUN IT UP” is a new collaboration from Iowa City’s Medicine Place and Viskus.


For more of what’s going on around Iowa, here’s a selection recent articles, photos, reviews, and other coverage from around the state:

Last month Anthony Taylor penned a great article about EleanorGrace that’s worth your while. The feature begins by establishing the scene of an artist on the verge of commercial success before “the pandemic derailed those popstar dreams.” The real focus of the story comes in thereafter, however, revealing an unanticipated search for self amid a period of loss and grief.

Avery Gregurich penned a short profile on Marshalltown’s Wax Xtatic record store for Little Village.

On this past week’s Iowa Basement Tapes, Kristian Day played music from Black Death, Ice Hockey, Squidboy, Modern Life is War, and more. Listen and subscribe via Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

And for more local music, check out the Iowa Musician’s Project, where Kelly Plumber continues to document the scene’s history on Facebook and Instagram.