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Bermuda Report introduces 'rock-stop sweetness'

BY SAMANTHA GENTRY | DECEMBER 16, 2010 7:10 AM

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mp3 samples: Bermuda Report

"After Laughter"

"Time To Roll Out"

"Tension"

Most bands can easily classify their music in a specific genre, such as indie, country, or rock. But for Bermuda Report, it's a little harder than that.

With members coming from quite different musical backgrounds and having a diversity of influences such as jazz, reggae, funk, and salsa, it's easy to combine all of those styles when they play. It's what vocalist Abbie Sawyer would call "rock-stop sweetness."

Bermuda Report will play its wide range of styles at 9 p.m. Saturday at the Yacht Club, 13 S. Linn St. Admission is $5. Blue Martian Tribe will also play.

Because the band that formed in May, Bermuda Report is still feeling out its sound. But lately, its music has had more of a funk-soul and jazz element to it.

"One thing that excites me is the band can go in so many different directions," said drummer Paul Kresowik. "We're searching for our sound, but there's a lot of excitement throughout the process."

Collectively, the group members listened to a lot of indie music when the band started; they found that indie rock mixed with slower tunes is a style the band could incorporate in its music.

After hearing Sawyer play with her previous band, the Diplomats, Kresowik knew he wanted to work with her. He called Sawyer about a year ago asking her to join the band, but at the time she was finishing up a master's degree.

Around six months later, Kresowik called her again and said, "[Abbie], we have to do this." And she agreed. What was originally going to be a short-term project became long-term.

Sawyer, a former employee of The Daily Iowan is not just the only vocalist for the five-member band, she is also the only woman.

"It's great, because I don't have stereotypical female roles," she said. "I'm seen as a musician and not necessarily a girl."

Being able to perform at the Blue Moose for the first time was Sawyer's most memorable show because, she said, it was a "formative moment" for the band.

"We went from being a rehearsing band to Bermuda Report," she said. "And for me, it was a great way to return to Iowa City with this new band and new project."

At that performance, the band played "Tension," normally a fast song, but for that show, the band slowed it down to make it more emotional. And it had a lasting effect on the audience.

"A couple people came up to [Sawyer] after the show and said the song really moved them," Kresowik said. "I think that was really an important step for me, because I like to be able to make people move."

Saturday's performance will be Bermuda Report's second show at the Yacht Club; the first was in the end of October. The band will play every song from its new EP along with new original material.

The EP will be released for free that same day on bermudareport.bandcamp.com. The group members also plan on recording a soul album in the next calendar year, because they have been "exploding with new material," Sawyer said.

"There's a lot of new material coming, and if you liked a little bit of what you've heard so far, we are even more excited about what's to come," she said. "Stay tuned, because we have a lot to give."


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