Iowa : Never Saw It Coming
Melbourne, the cultural epicenter of the world (well, Australia fo’ sure), produces some truly excellent bands. But, there’s so many awesome acts doing their thing in the pubs and bars of the city that it’s hard to pick which ones will make it beyond the city sphere. The Temper Trap, Gotye and Oh Mercy spring to mind as a few that have made it in the last few years. But, it’s Iowa that will be the next, just you take note.
With their grungy guitar-based tunes, driving percussion and Nirvana-esque grunge, they’re the ones that will dominate the near future of Australian music. As their debut album Never Saw It Coming contests, the band is versatile – each song rocks a different vibe, rhythm and influences. In fact, it’s versatility that sets them out as individual against every other emerging guitar band.
Opener Good Control begins with a nice, strong percussion beat followed by the introduction of sexy guitar and bass lines. The vocals are Nirvana-like and distant, evoking the essence of '90s grunge like so many other groups try to do but fail.
Contrastingly, Sunday is mystical and nostalgic, with background reverberation that echoes a winding path through a misty wood. But its follower, Lights Out, takes an altogether different tack, reaching back to grunge for its hunching, dark backbone.
Ultimately, Iowa embodies the essence of music that’s born in Melbourne. It’s black, smoky, authentic, real, cold and warm all at once. It’s a winter night in a packed venue where all that matters is the music. It’s Brunswick, Northcote, Carlton, Fitzroy, Abbotsford and the city, everywhere in between and soon to be more.
BY KELLY THEOBALD
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In A Word: Melbourne-is-Seattle-all-over-again