New Bo Music Festival Review


The first annual New Bo Music Festival took place this Saturday on Aug. 8, downtown in the New Bohemia district. The festival, hosted by radio station 94.1 KRNA, celebrated seven different alternative bands, each bringing their own unique style, with Young the Giant headlining.

Shapes and Colors

Hailing from Detroit, Michigan, this opening band gave the festival a lively, fun opening it deserved. An up and coming band, Shapes and Colors took the stage with an energy and excitement that primed a full day of alternative music. Their sound as a five piece alt band was solid and energetic, despite occasional difficulty in hearing vocals due to some technical issues. One of the most notable aspects of the performance was that all the members played with visible passion, in particular the drummer, whose smile never seemed to waver the whole performance.

The Full Body Tones

This Kentucky based band took the crowd on a wild punk ride, with an insane amount of sheer energy coming from the three-man rock band. The Full Body Tones seemed to really connect with the audience, whether it be by shooting off free merchandise from the stage, or by playing up close and personal with the crowd in an almost-in-reach spot. The band also made the performance enjoyable through their playful, laid-back attitude. While they also faced the occasional technical difficulty, this band really knew how to preform.

Ripple Green

Ripple Green brought a cool-kid, indie feel to the hot Iowa afternoon- a stark contrast to the fiery rock that had preceded it. Soulful vocals and smooth sounds were signatures of this three piece group. The sound was refreshing and pleasant, almost reminiscent at times to the popular band the Arctic Monkeys. Their songs were catchy and fun to sway to, and the performance was an excellent addition to the festival, showing some of the diversity of alternative music.


Dickie came with a lovely and interesting combination of sounds, with synth, acoustic guitar, and a gorgeous violin played by Kristina Priceman. Their sound varied from warm and hopeful, to dark and playful; their songs were catchy and infectious. As the fourth band to preform that night, Dickie kept the spirit alive through the muggy heat.


MINT brought the fire back into the crowd, with its hard nitty-gritty moments and strong, sexy sound. Hailing from Des Moines, the three member group excited the growing crowd with their hot alt rock sound. Their performance was fun and lively to watch. MINT filled the crowd with the energy it needed for the two upcoming bands that were to preform after them.

Allen Stone

Allen Stone brought an infectious funk and feel good rhythm that rocked the New Bo crowd. Not even a little rain could stop the sheer joy that Stone gave the crowd with his soulful sounds. The music group was unbelievably talented, spreading positive energy and “free love” to the mass of people who had gathered in front of the stage.  It was groovy. It was fresh. It was fun. And after of a day of standing in the heat, it was exactly what New Bo needed.

Young the Giant

The headliner.

When Young the Giant took the stage, nothing else seemed to matter. It didn’t matter that you were crammed in mass of sweaty bodies, or that the air was thick with smoke and heat, or that the rain had started to fall again. The crowd let out a wild scream as Sameer Gadhia’s voice filled the front lawn of the New Bo Market. They played with a great passion that the crowd went wild for, each song earning thunderous applause and cheering. Despite being cut short due to an incoming thunderstorm, Young the Giant did not fail to please.