Radio host, podcaster, and DIY history buff Kristian Day has become a patron saint and detailed archivist of the criss-crossing underground music circuits of Iowa. His podcast Iowa Basement Tapes has logged over 100 shows to date, all of which focus on bands that have essentially been forgotten by time, mostly after years of inaction.

Riley Gale, the lead vocalist of Dallas-based crossover thrash-metal juggernauts Power Trip, passed away on August 24 at the age of 34. If you’ve ever listened to even one minute of Power Trip’s music, or were lucky enough to see them play a live set, you know that they were an unstoppable force that brought a galvanizing energy and unbridled sense of forward motion to the world of extreme music.

“Big Love,” “Don't Stop,” “Go Your Own Way,” and other pop classics of their era will be brought to thrilling orchestral life in a special LeClaire Park event on September 12, with the Quad City Symphony Orchestra and Quad City Bank & Trust presenting a divine outdoor music experience in the latest iteration of Riverfront Pops – Landslide: A Symphonic Tribute to the Music of Fleetwood Mac.

Davenport-based hyper-prog-metal instrumental shredders Doppelganger have been rolling out tracks from their forthcoming self-titled album since the first single “Plumbus” landed in March of last year. (Yes, we see the Rick & Morty reference here, guys.) The long build-up to the proper album drop on September 25 makes sense in the context of their beyond-detailed omni-metal songwriting, because each four-minute-or-so chunk of this material proves so dense and constantly shifting that it contains its own standalone narrative worth poring over.

What does it mean for journeyman musician and revered songwriter Phil Elverum to make an album under the name The Microphones in 2020? The project Mount Eerie has been his mainstay since the early 2000s. The Microphones began years before and documented some of his earliest work around which his reputation was formed and his role in the lineage of institutions such as K Records and the traditions of what we now know as bedroom pop, lo-fi music, and emo was solidified.

Awash in meat smoke and bongwater, Davenport-based self-professed “bbq death metal” duo Pit Lord recently released their new album Seasonings in the Abyss.

Rock Island’s own Randall Hall dropped a transfixing full-length album titled Oracle in mid-June that documents a cycle of his extended saxophone experiments and electro-acoustic compositions – all with the intent to, as he explains, “delve into the mythic, the esoteric, and the apophatic.” Loaded with fierce atonal sax shred, passages of freewheeling improvisation in more consonant modes, and interstitial segments of processed spoken word and electronics that build on his central theme of ancient Greek mysticism, Oracle lands as a fully realized and diverse statement of purpose from Randall Hall with seemingly few other precedents in the Quad Cities scene.

Iconic Italian film composer Ennio Morricone passed away on July 7 at the age of 91. Active as a musician and composer from the late-1940s (!) all the way up to his death, Morricone ranks among the most acclaimed artists in the medium of film music. However, it’s safe to say, as the iconoclastic New York composer John Zorn asserted in his New York Times obituary/tribute, that the influence of Morricone's work moved far beyond the paradigm of film scoring and that he should rightly be considered one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, full stop.

Davenport's LoPiez is celebrating the completion of its first full year in business. The self-described "Rock & Roll New York style" by-the-slice pizza joint has decided to celebrate its anniversary in style, with a socially-distanced three-band outdoor bash in the parking lot across the street from its Third Street location. It's a joint venture with Rock Island's Wake Brewing, and will serve as the Rock Island "riff-infused" brewery's Iowa debut, with its signature metal-inspired beers being made available across the river for the first time.

Lauded by Fanfare for his “dazzling technique and white-hot interpretations” and by News Review for his “stunning mastery of the instrument,” the classical pianist, composer, and recording artist Julian Gargiulo performs a virtual concert in celebration of the Figge Art Museum's 15th anniversary, the streaming August 8 event sure to demonstrate why the Huffington Post advised Gargiulo's listeners to “revise any preconceived notions you have about classical-music concerts.”

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