Brotherly harmonies and genre-blending beats: Talbott Brothers to visit The Mill

Previously performing as openers for bands like AJR, the Talbott Brothers will perform solo for their return to Iowa City.



Samantha Murray, Arts Reporter

Previously playing alongside bands like AJR, ZZ Ward, and Johnnyswim, the Talbott Brothers are no strangers to big crowds and complicated performances. Now they are bringing their talents to the Mill.

The Talbott Brothers will perform at the Mill Nov. 7 at 8 p.m.

“When we play with artists like those guys, you have to kind of cater to them a little bit,” Nick Talbott said. “We kind of just have to lean into that style… It brings a different type of energy to our songs.”

Although Nick Talbott said he loves to perform with other big bands and with his own, he is excited to do something smaller. The Talbott Brothers will be doing away with their normal full band performance, stripping down their songs to fit only the two brothers.

The brothers, originally from Nebraska, have returned to the Midwest as part as their fall tour. Nick Talbott said he is excited to make his way back to Iowa City.

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“We just put out a new album,” Talbott said.  “It’s called *The Ghost Talker*. We’re pretty excited about it, and this whole tour has kind of been us playing these new songs for the first time… I think it’ll be real fun to stretch our legs with the new music.”

The Midwest serves not only as a venue for part of a larger tour, but as an inspiration for their music.

“We love coming back to the Midwest,” said Nick Talbott. “I think a lot of the influences from the roots rock and Americana style of music and just growing up in a small town of 1,800 people without any stop lights have always kind of just played a role in our music, even if not intentional because I think it’s kind of just part of you [and] where you grow up.”

The band has become known for their unique, ever-changing style of music. Nick Talbott described how it can be hard and constraining to pick just one genre to describe themselves, but their recent description would be indie folk rock music.

“We love every style of music,” he said. “That’s what we try to fit it on our record. Every song is different. They don’t all sound the same. I think we just like too many types of music.”

Part of not fitting in a box for them is gathering inspiration whenever they can.

“Sometimes we sit down and compare it to going fishing,” he said. “You might go everyday, but you might not catch something everyday, but at least you’re out there. You learn something and take something away from that.”

Talbott said finding a balance between diving into the stories and emotions of others and keeping up with their own lives can be difficult, but is a worthwhile process for their songs.

Working with a sibling might not always be the easiest thing, but Nick Talbott said he enjoys and benefits from both sides of the process.

“The first side is since we’re brothers, we don’t have to communicate about a lot of stuff, you know, just kind of naturally we can read each other,” he said. “The second part is so we’re brothers, so we always find something to fight about no matter what… but the dynamic between us, we’re completely opposite. We make a pretty good team.”