Tiny Ruins blossom

BY ANA BARRETT | JULY 31, 2014 5:00 AM

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When I spoke with Hollie Fullbrook, the lead singer of Tiny Ruins, she was sitting next to a beautiful lake in British Colombia, Canada. Fullbrook and bandmates bassist Cass Basil and drummer Alexander Freer have been on tour for the last three and a half months and will not be home until November.

Tiny Ruins’ first U.S. tour will bring it to Trumpet Blossom Café, 310 E. Prentiss St., at 9 p.m. today. Iowa City’s Douglas Kramer Nye will open the show.

Previously, Tiny Ruins has opened for such bands as Beach House and Fleet Foxes, but also, it headlines its own tour, promoting its second album, Brightly Painted, which Fullbrook said is about strength and overcoming adversity.

It’s “an album about making the best of what you have,” she said. The band has enjoyed its time as the opening act, but the members look forward to being the main event on this tour.

“We have a lot of cool supporting acts; it’s nice to make a connection to the town you’re in — this tour has had impressive support bands,” Fullbrook said. “Headlining is cool when people are there to see you. When you open for another band, you feel like you’re a nice surprise for the audience, and when they enjoy it, they have discovered something new.”

Iowa City singer/songwriter Nye may just be that nice surprise. He released No Good Samaritan in February 2013 on Almost Halloween Time Records, a label in Italy.

“The main thing I want out of my musical career is to keep creating and recording music with the goal of releasing it on vinyl,” Nye said. “Then, put that in people’s hands so they can listen to it on their turntables at home.”

He cites themes such as love, loss, death, family, pain, political consciousness, Mother Nature, and the Bible as main topics for most of his music.

“I write notes to myself all the time,” he said. “Sometimes, when I’m walking to work, watching a movie, reading a book, or having a conversation with someone, a couplet or quatrain will come to me. Over the past five years, I’ve complied hundreds of these; most of the time they’re a foundation of a song that I then have to build around. The time it takes me to write a song changes from song to song. Once in a great while, I wake up, and I have one sitting there waiting for me, and it happens really fast.”

Perhaps Nye will have a chance to share more of his music at Trumpet Blossom in the future. Katy Meyer, the owner and chef of establishment, said the vegan and vegetarian café hosts shows once every week or two, depending on the time of year and the happenings around town.

“We have different food and drink specials every night of the week, and we’re constantly inventing new seasonal cocktails and entrées so there is always something tasty to enjoy,” she said. “The stage was built by a friend, Luke Tweedy, when we were making renovations to the space back in March 2012 before we opened. I didn’t know quite what would transpire in our performance space, but it’s been a real pleasure seeing how the community has responded to having a unique venue like Trumpet Blossom.”

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