Review Mega Postamaniapaloozaopolis Vol 3 (Featuring Goldblums! MAIDS! Karen Meat (Sort of)! Green Death!)



Goldblums (4pm – Saturday – Nationwide Stage) – Gnat Bones

I dunno. I don’t have much more to say since the last time I wrote about them. I just like Goldblums and so should you. Besides, I needed to get to four 80/35 bands, and I didn’t want to review a jamband and I’m already kind of cheating. Deal with it.

Plus, they like wrestling and I felt like using a header pic of Dusty Rhodes. Why you gotta be a dick about it? Sue me, then. Start your own blog if you don’t like how I do things. No, YOU’RE being a jerk. Look, I’m not beholden to any sort of structure rules. I can review things however I please. Really though, start your own blog. It’s a lot of work, but it’s fun. Fine, don’t then. See if I care. I’m just saying you’re smart and people will be interested in what you have to say. Let’s just stop fighting. Bros? Bros.

Anyway, this is a pretty good tape.


MAIDS (7pm – Saturday – Nationwide Stage) – These Days

You know who hates disco? People who are beholden to one genre. People unwilling to just dance and have fun. Bad people. People who don’t use their turn signals. People who manually retweet. People who pee on the floor of public restrooms and demand their food be cooked a certain way. People who use the phrases “butthurt” and “cuck”. People who vote for Trump.

These Days is pure disco, man. Just a fun danceable five songs that make a person bob their head and tap their foot. Put them in a crowd, they might dance. Put them in a crowd with a drink in their hand and they will dance. That’s rad to me. To make pretty music and make people dance is a really cool way to live.

Even if you aren’t into dancing, there is a lot to like here. Mickey Davis’s synth and electronic work is superb. Danny Heggen has a really sweet voice that matches the music harmoniously. “Takes a Little Magic” might be a perfect pop song. It’s nearly five minutes of vocal effects, synth work, layering and just pure joy.

There is a place in the world for this. It needs to exist and it needs to be experienced and if you don’t like disco then maybe you’re the problem.

Karen Meat and the Computer (After Show) – On the Couch

Okay, I’m not actually going to review that. At least, not yet.

I just want an excuse to list all of the 80/35 after shows, so y’all know what’s up. There are a ton of great options for people who don’t want their fun to end after Nas or The Decemberists.

First off, the Kum and Go stage has their usual collection of local EDM, so if you’re just looking to dance it out a bit, head down to 10th st.

Now for the venues. The closest to the festival grounds is likely the new jazz bar, Noce. On Friday they offer a cool down party featuring the big voiced Adrien Logsdon of Trouble Lights.

Very near the festival is Gas Lamp. There’s a pre-party on Thursday sponsored by Lagunitas, although I dunno what bands are playing because I am a suck-ass journalist (editor’s note: Soul Phlegm!). On Friday they also have a huge voiced singer, Bonne Finken along with the debut of Parks Davis and Palavers, the new project from the mind behind Bright Giant and Josh Davis Band. On Saturday there’s Halfloves (formerly The Olympics from Iowa City), MAIDS and SIRES.

Vaudeville Mews has local supergroup Mantis Pincers and Gloom Balloon on Friday and Colleen Green and Karen Meat on Saturday. They’re both free and also where I’ll be.

Wooly’s is hosting The Uniphonics for those who are into the jam side of 80/35 on Friday and Canby on Saturday.

Over at the Des Moines Social Club, they have a rad pre-show with Dressy Bessy, The Blendours and Greg Wheeler and The Polygamist Mall Cops. After shows are pretty stacked, too with a DJ Set from Ross Clark of St. Lucia on Friday and Amasa Hines and Extravision on Saturday.

I’m sure there’s more, but holy shit is that a heck of a lineup. Have fun choosing.


Green Death (8:15 – Saturday – Nationwide Stage) – Manufacturing Evil

I was talking with my friend a while back about metal music. The theory I came up with is metal is so aggressive and often so brutal that it is hard to just ignore. Like, if you don’t like rap or country or pop, they’re often low key enough that you can ignore them. However, if someone puts Slayer on in the background of a party or a bar or whatever, you notice. If you’re not a fan, you’re actively paying attention to something you don’t enjoy because it forces you to pay attention.

I think that’s why 80/35 avoided metal acts for so long. A lot of what makes 80/35 great is simply giving people something to do. You wander downtown. Maybe you set up a lawn chair by a free stage or in the grass at the main stage, and you can have a nice day. If there is something that isn’t for you, it usually isn’t too rough that you can’t just tune it out. Some people don’t like to travel from stage to stage. They like to camp and just have a nice day.

By throwing in metal acts, you run the risk of annoying people. I don’t want people to be annoyed. Back in 2009, I actually promoted a metal show inside the Des Moines Social Club during the festival itself while the DMSC was part of the festival grounds. Hell, one of the free stages was in the parking lot, even. I wanted people to have the option of seeing heavier music, but I wanted them to know what they were getting into. I didn’t want them to camp and then suddenly get smacked in the mouth by blood and guts.

As a proponent of 80/35 and an all around worrywart, I don’t want someone to be turned off by a musical style they don’t enjoy. Now, as a person who thinks people need to hear something and open their mind, I’m super glad Green Death and Druids have spots on this year’s festival. I just hope it doesn’t sour someone too persnickety to just walk to a different stage.

I really hope that people take the time to listen to Druids and Green Death, because they are great. Druids are a little more rough, and a little more melodic. Green Death, though, are what people think of when they think metal. They’re of the Avenged Sevenfold, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest school. Really impressive vocal range, lots of guitars and songs about evil and devils.

And it’s good. Man, is it good.

The guitar work is supreme and the vocals wail. It’s metal to its absolute apex. It’s a glorious wave of death and destruction.

And I hope people give it a chance. A real honest chance. If they don’t like it, walk three blocks and see someone else.


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