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Sleepy Kitty brings lively show to Mill Friday

BY JULIANA FABIANO | JULY 07, 2011 7:20 AM

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The last time Evan Sult played in Iowa City, he wound up in the hospital with stitches. Having played here three times before, he returns with his lively new band, Sleepy Kitty, and new band member Paige Brubeck — stitches free.

Despite his past encounter with a heckling fan that ended in his unfortunate visit to the hospital, he said he always enjoyed playing in Iowa City.

“My experience at the Mill has been entirely positive,” Sult said. “It’s always a lot of fun playing in Iowa City and getting to talk to people who came out to the show.”

Sleepy Kitty will perform at the Mill, 120 E. Burlington St., at 9 p.m. Friday. Admission is $6.
While Brubeck and Sult haven’t always played in the same band, they have long shared a passion for performing in the Midwest.

“Everybody around here loves to have conversations about music and is really friendly,” Brubeck said. “Iowa City seems to have a hip, listening crowd and a lot of cool music going on here.”

Southern Illinois native Brubeck said she likes the different music venues around Iowa City and enjoys talking to residents around the area who enjoy making music as well. Sult also said Sleepy Kitty’s favorite part of playing in a live show is the crowd interaction — especially in Iowa City, where the music community is interested in talking about music.

Brubeck contributes with singing and playing guitar, and Sult plays drums and adds vocals in as well.
Previously in the band Stiletto Attack, Brubeck said her collaboration with Sult originated from an afternoon playing music together.

And that day, the name Sleepy Kitty was born.

“We were working on a project and decided we needed a name for it,” Brubeck said. “For some reason, we were watching videos online of adorable kittens all day, and we just decided to name our sound collage after that. A year later, after we kept making music, we realized wow, we’re in a band called Sleepy Kitty.”

The musicians said they recognize the name Sleepy Kitty doesn’t scream rock and roll, but they love the sound of “loud drums and loud guitars.”

Casey Miller, a friend and fan of Sleepy Kitty, said the two have an obvious chemistry on stage that comes out in their music.

“They experiment a lot with their music, and you can tell there’s just layers and layers to it,” Miller said. “You can’t imagine only two people producing this sound, but you can tell everyone really loves it.”

Joe Schwab, the owner of Sleepy Kitty’s record label, Euclid Records, said the crowd always seems to be really taken back by the band’s music.

“There’s a terrific aura about them that people recognize,” he said. “People really enjoy them and feel a sense that they actually know them.”

Sult said the sound could be classified as a mix of pop and a “whole bunch of noise.”

“The interplay between of all our sounds is what makes our music exciting,” he said. “We like it to be challenging but also come across to be fun. We get really into our live shows.”

Having fun on stage is something Sleepy Kitty hopes the audience will appreciate.

“I really like it when people dance. That’s what the drummers say because that’s my job while we’re performing,” Sult said. “When people get into it, it becomes more and more exciting for all of us.”


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