Friday, July 30, 2010

The Russians Release Pop Gem "Crashing The Party"

When working in a musical collective, what better moniker than The Russians? Boston’s Scott Janovitz found an apt name, as his project incorporates an army of collaborators to record the pop gems he writes in between stints touring with and producing other acts. Fortunately, this group of friends - including Mike Gent (The Figgs, Death Vessel, Juliana Hatfield), Mike Piehl (Letters to Cleo, Martin Sexton), Rob Dulaney (Sarah Borges) and Russell Chudnofsky (Lori McKenna) - are among the most creative musicians Boston has to offer. The collegial group includes no less than 15 players and production personnel; the end result is an album of unforgettable, hook-packed songs that feature shimmering melodies and driving guitars seamlessly combined with 21st Century loops and sonic embroidery. The Russians managed, between their myriad other projects to record a full length album, Crashing The Party, was released digitally and on CD July 13th, followed by a vinyl LP.

The Russians - The Records Over

Available now at

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The White Stripes - De Stijl - 2000

Despite their reputation as garage rock revivalists, the White Stripes display an impressive range of styles on their second album, De Stijl, which is Dutch for "the style." Perhaps the album's diversity — which incorporates elements of bubblegum, cabaret, blues, and classic rock — shouldn't come as a surprise from a band that dedicates its album to bluesman Blind Willie McTell and Dutch artist Gerrit Rietveld. Nevertheless, it's refreshing to hear the band go from the Tommy James-style pop of "You're Pretty Good Looking" to the garagey stomp of "Hello Operator" in a one-two punch. It's even more impressive that the theatrical, piano-driven ballad "Apple Blossom" and a cover of Son House's "Death Letter" go so well together on the same album. Jack White's understated production work and versatile guitar playing and vocals also stand out on the languid, fuzzy "Sister, Do You Know My Name?" as well as insistent rockers like "Little Bird" and "Why Can't You Be Nicer to Me?" As distinctive as it is diverse, De Stijl blends the Stripes' arty leanings with enough rock muscle to back up the band's ambitions.-AMG



Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Moment - The Work Gets Done - 1985

"English pop music's greatest ever secret". For those lucky enough to have caught them live between 1983 and 1990, they offered passion and pain with a brass hook, punk and soul with the guts of a Gibson 335! Through one memorable album, 1985’s ‘The Work Gets Done’, produced by Edward Ball and Paul Bevoir, and a series of singles – ‘In This Town', ‘One, Two They Fly’, ‘Poor Mr Diamond’, ‘Ready To Fall’ and ‘Pain’ – The Moment left their mark. More than anything, though, they will be remembered for the finely crafted anthems of songwriter Adrian Holder and the passion of their live performances. -themomentuk



Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Mains - The Higher You Get, The Higher You Get - 2006

Brilliant debut by this new, BritPop-inspired, pop "super group" of sorts. The band consists of (among others) Foster Calhoun, Rich McCulley, Todd Herfindal (The Meadows/Single/Blue Sky Roadster) and Kevin Houlihan (The Meadows) is electric with cool new wave thrills, hard core "Ziggy Stardust"-era guitar theatrics, and Beatles-inspired song structures - all delivered in a way you've never heard any of these guys before! The sum of these pop parts is pure hook heaven - delivered with lots and lots of guitars! Though The Mains high voltage sonic attack is fueled by McCulley's primal rock riffing and Calhoun's gorgeous howl, tracks like “I Threw It All Away” and “By The Way” are drenched in a beautiful melancholy of strings, keyboards, and layered harmonies that sound eerily like some forgotten AM radio masterpiece. The record is a triumphant and heart breaking song cycle, a celebration of cranked amplifiers, blown fuses, late nights, young lovers, excess inspired madness and teen-age kicks. In short – the stuff of Rock and Roll legend.-Kool Kat



Monday, July 26, 2010

Pillow Of Wrongness - Falling Down - 2004

Pillow Of Wrongness was created in a lab in the year 2000, intended to be the ultimate and most perfect rock band in the known universe. Unfortunately, the Pillow Project was inadvertently mixed up with another experiment, leaving Kid Rock with all the musical talent, and Pillow with an uncanny ability to sense the location of the nearest trailer park.
However, they still play rock music anyway, and do the best they can. Pillow music has been heard on networks as MTV and E!, on such radio stations as KLOS and KROQ, and has been well-reviewed in such publications as Music Connection, LA Weekly, and many more.
They describe their music and sound as "exactly the type of music we'd be listening to all the time if we were vain enough to listen to our own stuff all the time." -CD Baby



Friday, July 23, 2010

The Adventures of Jet - Part 3: Coping With Insignificance - 2001

Mixing the lighthearted keyboard work of new-wave pop with '90s style power pop, the Adventures of Jet create a style blending two vintages of pop. Sitting closer to power-pop with its heavy use of crunchy guitars, though exhibiting a strong sense of new wave roots, the band manages to find a fairly vacant niche to fill in the spectrum of pop.



Thursday, July 22, 2010

Paul Collins to release "King of Power Pop" on Augest 24th

King of Power Pop! is the new studio album by Paul Collins one of the originators of the high-energy sound known as Power Pop.
Paul got his start in the late seventies as the drummer for the legendary NERVES, (with Peter Case and Jack Lee), later forming THE BREAKAWAYS with Peter Case, and finally starting The BEAT (aka PAUL COLLINS BEAT) in 1979.
King of Power Pop!, his third record of this decade is a complete return to his roots - to power pop, the sound he helped create and popularize, a sound that has seen a resurgence in recent years, a sound that is here to stay!
"For me this is the record that connects the dots, from The Nerves to The Breakaways to The Beat to today… this is the record that puts it all together!" - Paul Collins

Produced and engineered in Detroit by Jim Diamond (Dirtbombs, The Go, White Stripes, to name just a few), KING OF POWER POP! also features Eric Blakely on guitar and backing vocals, Diamond on bass, and Dave Shettler on drums (SSM, The Sights). Motor City guests include Wally Palmar of the legendary power pop hit-makers THE ROMANTICS, as well as pop icon Nikki Corvette of NIKKI & The CORVETTES. The catchy cover art is the work of legendary artist BILL STOUT.

Paul Collins - Do You Want To Love Me? from his forthcoming album "King of Power Pop"



The Love-Tones - Be What You Want - 2003

Be What You Want is a striking debut for Sydney, Australia's the Love-Tones, a trio led by singer/ songwriter Matt Tow, that manages to keep its balance on that difficult path between the past and the present. Tow is clearly a major fan of '60s U.K. pop from Revolver-era Beatles to the Move in their early days to the gossamer pop of the Zombies to David Bowie's pre-stardom mod phase (the anthemic, powerful opener "The Sound and the Fury" would have been a killer follow-up to Bowie's 1966 single "Can't Help Thinking About Me"), but unlike a lot of his contemporaries, Tow knows the difference between homage and thievery. Think Neil Finn or Allen Clapp, not Oasis. Songs like the dreamy neo-psychedelia of "Guiding Star" or the passionate title track are mature, literate pop with thoughtful, non-clichéd lyrics and sturdily memorable hooks. Be What You Want is a small, intimate record that proves that it's no longer enough to simply churn out third-rate Todd Rundgren and Badfinger imitations in the pop underground.-AMG



Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Sunshine Ponies: Mixtapes & Soundtracks

‘Yesterday, things were so much simpler”

If you've ever loved, lost, lusted or laughed, then you will relate to the themes in these songs. If you've ever had a crush, felt confused or found your muse, then this album will strike a chord with you. Not a true band, more a beautiful accident, these musical moments were inspired by the poems & ponderings of a surprise romantic pairing. Enjoy, relate & debate! Will there be a happy ending for these “Sunshine Ponies”?

Perhaps it was always bound to happen? After working with countless local & international bands, some of the creativity was bound to rub off on Popboomerang Records label owner Scott Thurling, who along with partner Sarah Halligan, have created the indie pop supergroup “The Sunshine Ponies.”

“Mixtapes & Soundtracks” features the very personal poems and lyrics of Scott & Sarah who were brave enough to reveal them to their various musical friends who paired the words with the melodies that they were destined to deserve. The songs on this album depict a rollercoaster of emotions and events! Will there be a happy ending for these Sunshine Ponies? “Mixtapes & Soundtracks” will reveal all!

<a href="">Sarah Sunshine by The Sunshine Ponies</a>

Mooney Suzuki - People Get Ready - 2000

The starting track on Mooney Suzuki's first album on Estrus perfectly encapsulates their sound: there is a definite MC5/Stooges sound, thumping bass and drums with organ and fuzzy guitars coming in to take you away. These guys are out of New York, so a New York Dolls influence is evident. Plenty of garagey, proto-punk rock. Much like the Hellacopters' early releases, this also brings to mind Sonic's Rendezvous Band, with vocals eerily similar to Scott Morgan. This is an album that, no matter how retro the band might sound, still can make one excited that music like this is still extant in the world. -AMG



Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Richard X. Heyman - Living Room - 1988

Richard X. Heyman's Living Room!! is one of the D.I.Y. power pop highlights of the '80s, a decade that didn't really see many of those. Prior to the Internet-spawned growth of the pop underground later in the decade, it was all but impossible for an album like Living Room!! to reach its target audience, most of whom discovered even this reissue in the deep-discount remainder bins where it remained a staple through the first half of the '90s. Happily, that audience did find this album (and its major-label follow-up, 1991's Hey Man!) in quantities enough for Heyman's late-'90s material to reach the cult following he deserves. As the title suggests, these 14 songs were recorded in a living room studio in Manhattan, with Heyman himself playing all of the instruments except for three bass parts, a guitar line, and a piano and vocal part, courtesy of his wife, Nancy Leigh, on the wistful "Union County Line." The homemade provenance of the album keeps it from sounding too slick and studio-bound (like, unfortunately, Hey Man!), though Heyman's craft and care are obvious in the sweetly overdubbed vocals and just-so arrangements. Most importantly, however, this is a fine collection of songs, with non-clichéd melodies and hooks married to a more intelligent and intriguing collection of lyrics than the usual "oh girl I do/don't love you" power pop babble. The alienated "Call Out the Military" and the rattling "Wouldn't That Be a Riot" (possibly the first power pop song to make good lyrical use of the word "davening") are the best of the bunch, but only the sour-grapes whine of the anti-critic screed "Local Paper" falters lyrically. Living Room!! can be difficult to find, but it's worth the effort; this is one of the all-time great power pop CDs. -AMG




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