March 1, 2014
Posted by Dave Murphy on Des Moines Is NOT Boring

2014 is shaping up to be maybe the best year for Iowa albums that I can remember. I know it is only March, and I know that over the past couple of years writing this column, I have been prone to a certain level of hyperbole. However, I can’t think of a stretch of albums coming out that I have been looking forward to more. Just off the top of my head, Love Songs for Lonely Monsters, Lesbian Poetry, Seed of Something,Jordan Mayland, Twins, Roxi Copland, Christopher the Conquered all either already released or have plans for albums this year. However, like most years, sometimes my favorite albums are the ones that sneak in a little under the radar.

Now, Foxholes didn't exactly come out of nowhere, but they are finally starting to get the attention they deserve. Foxholes is a band that has been making a lot of noise in Des Moines. Their quick and grimy rock has been bringing them attention and accolades for a little while now. However, their first full length, Can’t Help Myself, showcases them at their best.

Foxholes is a hard band to describe, but an easy one to enjoy. There’s a definite Iggy Pop and Dinosaur, Jr. vibe that I picked up immediately. But it goes beyond just garage rock. While they don’t hit the superb precision that Dinosaur, Jr. is known for (and really, who does?), the song “Tunnel Vision” comes very close to that. It is quick, harmonious and honestly a little scary. I’m not sure why, but listening to it felt like the world could end at any minute.

“Tunnel Vision” is my favorite track, for sure, but I don’t think controlled chaos it is the only sound Foxholes does well. The next track, “So It Goes…” has a nice, jaunty even sunshiny vibe. It is a nice dessert to the Armageddon that is “Tunnel Vision”. Right after that is a great pop-rock song (which I think has a hint of mandolin or ukulele) “Arizona”.

For an album I didn't expect to hear coming into 2014, “Can’t Help Myself” delivers in spades. With so many great acts releasing albums, I can’t wait to see what the rest of 2014 has in store.

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