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June 20, 2024

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Vine of Souls (Alternative Tentacles)

By: Jeb Branin

Billed by some as the next generation in "real" crusty punk rock IOWASKA seems to be much more than that to me or, frankly, anything BUT that to me. Indescribably (and inexplicably) catchy hooks provide cohesion for a heavy rock delivery that borrows liberally from such diverse stylings as punk, fusion, metal and psychedelia. The music alternates between driving and ethereal within the framework of individual songs. The intelligent and passionately delivered lyrics are a very real contributor to the overall impact of the music. Maybe it is because the band if fronted by a woman or maybe it is because this is so damn impressive but I can't help but think of the first time I heard THE DOG FACED HERMANS or even LUCID NATION every time I put this on. IOWASKA sound nothing like D.F.H. or L.N. but they have the same unforgettable magic, the same masterful song writing and the same improvisational feel as both those bands. The D.F.H. are regrettably gone but if IOWASKA and LUCID NATION could team up on the same bill it would be a momentous occasion in rock music indeed.
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