Bad Bad Hats to lead night of Midwestern music at M-Shop


Courtesy of SUB

Bad Bad Hats performed at 80/35 Music Festival in Des Moines, Iowa in July of 2017.


Thursday night in the Maintenance Shop will be a night of fairly local music. Twin Cities’ Bad Bad Hats will be performing with the support of Iowa City’s Halfloves.

Bad Bad Hats is an indie-rock trio from Minneapolis. Those who are fans of bands like COIN and Hippo Campus are likely to enjoy this band’s repertoire.  

“Some of their music is just so good,” said Angela Chamberlain, Maintenance Shop co-director. “You hear it once when you’re putting together a playlist and you’re like, ‘when am I going to hear this again?’ It gets stuck in your head, but not in a bad way. In a good way.”

The band started forming in 2010 when Kerry Alexander, vocals and guitar, and Chris Hoge, drums, met in college and began writing songs. When their friend Noah Boswell, bass, joined the lineup, the trio as it is today was born. 

Since then, the band has caught the attention of Afternoon Records and released their EP “It Hurts” and their LP “Psychic Reader.” The band’s position offers the opportunity for show attendees to experience their music in a distinct way. 

“I don’t want to be mean, but I don’t hear them on the radio,” Chamberlain said. “That makes it more attractive to me because their songs aren’t being ruined by too many plays.”

Alexander is the primary writer in the band. Therefore, she drives the band and her perspective is what you hear the most. 

“I also find it interesting that it’s an indie-rock band with a female vocalist,” said Matt Schroeder, Maintenance Shop co-director. “It’s the first one I’ve heard in a while.”

With Ames being so close to Minneapolis and a significant amount of Iowa State students being from Minnesota, Bad Bad Hats’ origin provides something special to their show at the M-Shop. 

“This is one of the closest bands we’ve had in a while that’s headlined,” Chamberlain said. “Usually it’s bands that are coming from Los Angeles or New York or Nashville, even. I think that’s really cool.”

Bad Bad Hats is not the only band the M-Shop is looking forward to, however. Indie-rock outfit Halfloves is no stranger to the M-Shop. 

“It’s exciting to have Halfloves back, too,” Chamberlain said. “It’s been almost two years. With scheduling conflicts and touring it just doesn’t always work out, but it’s super nice to get them on the bill as well. They’re super talented.”

The band headlined the venue in the fall of 2016 and has opened multiple shows there. They enjoy playing at the M-Shop and are always looking to come back. 

“Halfloves reached out to us about an opening act this semester and they’re a pretty good fit for Bad Bad Hats,” Schroeder said. 

Halfloves has played with the likes of Manchester Orchestra, Misterwives, and We The Kings. They blend a variety of styles to create something emotional and engaging. They produced their self-titled debut album with Brandon Darner who has worked with bands like Imagine Dragons and The Envy Corps.

The band has been hailed as “the best currently active rock band in Iowa” by the Iowa Informer. As Iowa City natives, the Maintenance Shop show will be close to home. 

“It will definitely be a good show,” Chamberlain said. “I’m so excited.”

The show is Thursday, March 8 at 8 p.m. The Maintenance Shop will open its doors at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $10 with an ISU student ID and $14 for the public with a $2 increase the day of the show. Tickets can be purchased at the Maintenance Shop box office or online via Midwestix.