Imagine, if you will, a band with a lead singer who sounds a little like a young Elvis Costello with better tone, and a backing group writing and playing infectious pop tunes in a variety of styles. Add to that a producer and arranger who knows how to get the most out his musicians and not afraid to experiment with horns, and sounds that complement the songs. If you can imagine that, you don’t have to look farther than the music metropolis of Milwaukee Wisconsin to find it. Ian & The Dream is the band and according to their press, these three high school chums formed the band in 2008. Ian Ash is the lead singer, guitarist, and doubles on keyboards. Chivo is the bass player and Brian Farvour pounds the drums.
I&TD released a 7 song EP in 2012 and have followed that up with a full length album called “California Cauliflower” which was released in September of 2014. The album is a full on assault of the senses and an infectious pop collection guaranteed to have your toes tapping and songs that you just can’t get out of your head. The album starts off with “Girl From California”, an homage to California pop music reminiscent of everything from The Beach Boys to The Red Hot Chili Peppers. “Steppin’ On My Shoes” follows with a happy reggae beat that makes you think of chilling on a deserted beach. The title track checks in as track 5 and again embodies the California pop feel and picks up the mantle and moves the genre forward into the 21st century.
The songwriting on the album is clever and enticing, the production is first rate and the performances are flawless. Ian & The Dream is definitely a band that is going places and if you’re a fan, get on board now. If you’re not, you will be soon enough.
Uncle Duke; a.k.a. Rob Penland is the producer and host of "The Mad Music Asylum" a 4 hour weekly syndicated radio show and now a 24 hour streaming internet station.