You Me & Iowa
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You Me & Iowa


Band Alternative Rock


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"One of the best albums I've heard this year..."

"The Adventures of You Me & Iowa takes all of the best elements of rock, indie, and pop music and blends them into something wholly accessible, yet undeniably smart and rewarding. I may be speaking too soon, but this just might be a near perfect pop/rock album, and one of the best albums I’ve heard this year."
- Delusions of Adequacy

"Sits comfortably between The Beach Boys and Of Montreal..."

"[You Me & Iowa] sits comfortably between The Beach Boys and Of Montreal, skirting the psychedelic electronica of the latter and erring on the side of a Harvard educated version of the former[...]Like an older, slightly more cynical Vampire Weekend, these boys fill this album to the brim with catchy hooks, tight harmonies and snappy guitar riffs."
- Amplifier Magazine

"This summer, it’s The Adventures of You Me & Iowa."

"Every summer must be accompanied by an album [...] This summer, it’s The Adventures of You Me & Iowa."
"An album that never slows, sinks, or ever sounds anything like any other band on the scene."
- The Source Weekly

"Bands like Death Cab for Cutie and Weezer..."

"In fact I’m surprised that the purveyors of bands like Death Cab for Cutie and Weezer haven’t shown up at the Silver Lake doorstep of this band with briefcases full of recoupable money in hand."

"Sometimes follow the lead of David Byrne and Paul Simon."

"Driven by tightly interlocked guitar and keyboard lines, the Los Angeles-based quintet's effective blend of danceable pop melodies is adorned with Andrew Carroll's vocals, which sometimes follow the lead of David Byrne and Paul Simon." - Flaunt Magazine

"LA’s best kept secret."

"Los Angeles indie rock quintet You Me & Iowa are releasing their sophomore full-length, The Adventures of You Me & Iowa, on May 6th, both digitally and in-stores. Adventures is laced with catchy melodies and bouncy riffs creating a wonderful blend of indie pop and dance rock. Since the band’s formation in 2003, they have been growing a steady fanbase in LA, scoring rotation on LA’s Indie 103.1 and repeatedly selling out LA venue Spaceland. The band’s follow-up is sure to unleash their fresh sound to the nation and world, unveiling LA’s best kept secret.

The Adventures of You Me & Iowa begins with sweet and twinkling keys provided by keyboard and trumpet player Ryan Ross on single “Dress The Stage” (download!) A bouncy riff takes over on top of a driving tambourine played by percussionist, bassist and vocalist Ryan Julio. Layered vocals on “Dress The Stage” create an interesting effect and showcase well-crafted harmonies. Drummer Tony Benedetti drives songs with his bouncy beats, dynamic drums and wonderful crescendos, especially in “The Song Entire” and “Valhalla.”

“Tommy Hall” features a low, funky bass line and an equally funky synth part conjuring a New Wave, dance groove sound reminiscent of Hall & Oates, or contemporaries Tigercity. The following tracks, “Goldfish” and “Margaret Mourning,” draw from the same influences, but the former intros with two part staccato keys, opposing melodies and a smooth trumpet part courtesy of Ron Rolling. I’m kind of a sucker for brass, so this song totally owns me. “Margaret Mourning” has the same funky 80s, New Wave feel, but is fresh and interesting with its poppy driving riffs from vocalist/guitarist Andrew Carroll, constant switch of tempo and beat structure and light, airy vocals in an ambitious song that comes together quite well.

Guitarist Tizoc Estrada, who also plays the glockenspiel, creates warped, psych riffs on the poppy “Perpendicularly Speaking” before the album finishes with “Make Your Home (Smell Delicious),” a happy-go-lucky track with Mountain Goats-esque vocals and fun, warped guitar riffs. The Adventures of You Me & Iowa is a well-crafted album drawing on many different influences, yet remains cohesive, as well as fresh, and interesting. These Cali guys know how to rock.

The Adventures of You Me & Iowa lands physically and digitally May 6, 2008 so be sure to pick up a copy for yourself. While we in the technological age of all things digital, I recommend getting a physical copy of the disc, as well, because the album artwork is fantastic and the booklet functions as a comic book drawn by Chuck Wadey."
- PopWreckoning

"Rock music that could be adaptable by hipsters, teens, and college kids alike"

Over the course of the summer writing for the LG Billboard Mobile Beat, I was reminded of how vast the music scene is in Los Angeles. Yet, I had not taken the chance to fully explore yet. Enter You, Me, & Iowa.

Discovered from my other job moderating for interactive text and music video request show Havoc on the 101, You, Me, & Iowa’s video for “The Good, The Bad, and The Beautiful” quickly became popular, being a regularly requested vide on the show and garnering new fans around the country. When I heard they were performing at Safari Sam’s, I had to jump at the chance.

Featuring a good mix of indie, pop, and dance rock, You, Me, & Iowa stand out from much of the LA indie scene. They make simple, fun, and meaningful rock music that could be adaptable by hipsters, teens, and college kids alike (and everyone else, for that matter).

Their short, but impressive six song set featured a mix of songs from their debut EP Bigger Than Boston and a taste of new material from their upcoming, yet to be titled full length. Their lyrics are reminiscent of early Weezer circa Pinkerton with catchy indie pop melodies the likes of Death Cab for Cutie with a hint of prog thrown in to the mix. The band’s strongest point is their ability for great hooks with harmonizing guitars and synthesizers. Most other bands will put the emphasis of the hook on one or the other. Keyboardist Ryan Ross, guitarist Tizoc Estrada, and lead singer/guitarist/original co-founder Andrew Carroll blend together to create a layered sound of tingly keys and intricate guitar melodies that will catch anyone’s ear. Drummer Tony Benedetti supports the hooks with strong drum lines that go from hard and crashing to “dancy” and groovy. While bassist Ryan Julio completes the mix with thick and full bass lines and great stage presence head banging and really letting loose on the stage, getting lost in his band’s music.

On early songs from the Bigger Than Boston era like “Runways and Freeways” and “Working Title” lead singer Carroll sounds like a perfect center between Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World and Isaac Brock of Modest Mouse. His vocals remain calm and controlled even in more aggressive moments, showing emotion without resorting to scream his lungs out. Newer songs from their upcoming full length like “Goldfish” have the band opening up more musically and playing with song structure. The song’s pre-chorus breakdown sounds like it was inspired by the Starland Vocal Band, complete with synchronized “choreography” that is more quirky than corny, actually.

If I had a qualm, it was that I didn’t get to experience “The Good, The Bad, & The Beautiful” live, the song that introduced me to the band that opens with dueling guitar riffs and a trumpet. But, for the most part, I was left impressed and curious to know more about the band that was given the title of Los Angeles’ Best Alternative Rock Band of 2005 at the Los Angeles Music Awards.

Don’t be fooled by their name, as You, Me, & Iowa’s is great Los Angeles grown music, perfect for that drive home with friends at dusk. -

"Rock Done Right"

The motto for Iowa, the 29th state in our union: Our liberties we prize and our rights we will maintain. This maxim is traditional Midwestern philosophy done right.
So much so that its words have spread west and landed smacked dab between you and me, but more notably, You Me & Iowa – a five-piece band that has brought out the slogan upon the Los Angeles music scene. Where, Eureka! Its liberties of possessing a wide music artillery of guitars, keyboards, drums and bass has led to a full-fledged musical assault.

Even though the band's performing days began in 2003, the early beginnings of the group, which is now comprised of Andrew Carroll (guitar, vocals), Tony Benedetti (drums), Tizoc Estrada (guitar), Ryan Julio (bass, vocals) and Ryan Ross (keyboards) go back even farther.

Carroll and Benedetti began performing together in several musical ventures in the Bay Area when they were 11-years-old. The two were melodically separated due to a certain little thing called college, but Benedetti returned to the fold in September 2003 in Los Angeles. This time, he wasn't greeted by Carroll alone, but by Estrada, Julio and then keyboardist Brian Boarini.

As if going through a massive array of cornhusks through a field, You Me & Iowa set forth in the gargantuan musical landscape of L.A. in a whirlwind. By fall of 2004, the band released its first independent EP. In keeping with the band's Americana sensibility, the aptly named Bigger Than Boston , sold its first 1,000 copies immediately as the band constantly played throughout California, Nevada and Arizona.

During their trek across the Wild West, the band played with peers including Mellowdrone, Midnight Movies and Monsters Are Waiting. All the hard work has led to winning results as the band was awarded the Best Alternative Rock Band at the 2005 L.A. Music Awards.

Their moniker may be catchy, but it's their music that is even more so. In their catalogue of songs, You Me & Iowa have shown a wide range of pop sounds while keeping a strong cohesiveness throughout.

Punk aggressions meld with soft pop melodies akin to that of Death Cab for Cutie on “The Greenback Ministers.” And as the loud and soft respites clash beautifully amongst Carroll's vocals, everything is anchored by Bendetti's drumming, a steady preciseness amongst the layer upon layer of music. The level of musical technicality is apparent and is in due part by the pedigree of the musicians most notably from Estrada who holds an MFA in guitar and Julio who is trained in operatic performance.

Pop quirkiness reigns over a track known only as “Working Title.” The dual guitars enhance Carroll's vocal, the delivery matching up with the peculiar percussion. Carroll's range is impressive as his ability to lay a perfect falsetto is matched with the emotive response to the song's chorus. The complexity again rears its head as a spaced out keyboard is lined with the prog-rockiness of the track.

The saloon churn of “The Good, The Bad, and The Beautiful” again displays the band's ability to craft intricate guitar hooks (and a bass solo to boot!), but here it gives off a cinematic quality that evokes the song's title. In due part by the addition of the trumpets, which sound akin to that of the illustrious soundtracks of the popular Spaghetti Westerns directed by Sergio Leone.

Though here the soap opera lies heavily in the song's chorus, as Carroll's voice like a pistol, fires rapidly, everything hitting on target.

You Me & Iowa has maintained its right to rock.

Bigger Than Boston is currently available. For more information, visit

- By John Barundia - Campus Circle Magazine


The Adventures of You Me & Iowa - 2008
The Greenback Ministers / Working Title (Single) - 2006
Bigger Than Boston REDUX (EP) - 2006
Bigger Than Boston (EP) - 2005

Tracks from Bigger Than Boston have been played on Indie 103.1 and Star 98.7 in Los Angeles, KEXP in Seattle, as well as college radio stations across the nation.

Music videos have been aired on digital cable nationwide, and have been featured on Youtube, Havoc Television, etc.

Music Video:



In late 2001, an adventure was brewing. Friends gathered and the declaration was made: "It's going to be you, me and Iowa". Two years later, the band was formed. After two EP's and four years of constant performance, band members Tony Benedetti, (drums), Andrew Carroll, (vocals, guitar), Tizoc Estrada, (guitar, glockenspiel), Ryan Julio, (bass, vocals, percussion), and Ryan Ross, (keys, trumpet), are pleased to unveil their first full-length album.

The Adventures of You Me & Iowa is a breath of fresh air—indie-pop-rock that twists the genre in a new and authentic musical direction. Complex arrangements combine with catchy melodies and an inspired rhythm section. Coupled with the comic book/graphic novel style booklet by established artist and video-game designer Chuck Wadey, the album brings the listener along for a sonic and visual adventure.

With the help of engineer David Newton (The Mighty Lemon Drops, Fonda, The Little Ones, The Happy Hollows), and mixer J. Robbins, (Jawbox, The Dismemberment Plan, The Promise Ring, Jets To Brazil), You Me & Iowa has taken the fuel of the past four years to light the fire of The Adventures Of You Me & Iowa.

Since their beginnings in 2003, You Me & Iowa played their dues around the West, performing with their up-and-coming peers: Midnight Movies, Mellowdrone, Monsters Are Waiting, The Velvet Teen and Rx Bandits. It is their vivacious live show that not only keeps their loyal fanbase fixated, but even won them "Best Alternative Rock Band" at the 2005 L.A. Music Awards.

Frontman, Andrew Carroll, remarks on the title of the newly released record, The Adventures Of You Me & Iowa. "For us, making a living as a band, every day is quite an adventure. It doesn't always necessarily have a happy ending. But it wouldn't be an adventure if that were the case."