Various Artists

The Best Of IGL: Folk Rock

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IGL was the state of Iowa's first recording studio and label. Based out of Milford, the studio/label started up in 1965, recording local bands. It hit paydirt with its first release, and for the next few years, the studio and label was a flurry of activity, recording bands from their home state and nearby Minnesota and Nebraska. This 17-track compilation focuses on the many folk-rock bands that came to ply their wares in the IGL studios, hoping for a hit record. Although the Byrds and Bob Dylan are the principal focus points, there's an amazing amount of original material here, and of course, the rock & roll garage band quotient looms large in every one of these tracks. The three opening tracks by the Scavengers set the tone for this whole compilation; all Rickenbacker 12-string guitars, two-part harmonies and thundering drums. Potent selections from the Dark Knights, the Epicureans, the Torres, Dale and the Devonaires, the Berries, Dynamic Hursemen, the Kingpins, the Senders, Second Half, the Pawnbrokers, the Mad Lads, the Restrictions and Napoleon I & His Relatives complete this wonderful compilation. All prime '60s folk-rock material with the added bonus of a lengthy interview insert with the label's owners giving the big picture. Fans of mid-'60s garage band material will already be aware of IGL's legacy, but for those who view Iowa as a barren ground for any kind of teen band hijinks, this compilation will come as a major revelation. The sound of a thousand American high school bands wishing they were English.