powerpop Archive

Hundred-word Reviews for July 2016, Part 3

Five more quick reviews of new or recent album releases. Today features a couple of the best of the week’s bunch. Mike Eldred Trio – Baptist Town Nick Curran‘s Reform School Girl was one of the best albums of 2010. JD McPherson‘s Let the Good Times Roll was among the finest releases of 2015. If

Hundred-word Reviews for July 2016, Part 1

Happy Independence Day to my fellow Americans. Today kicks off another of my occasional week-long extravaganzas in which I post five reviews each business day, each exactly 100 words. Some of the artists will be well-known; others obscure and/or bubbling under. All (save maybe one or two out of the total 25) are well worth

Hundred-word Reviews for June 2016, Part 3

Still more of these quickie reviews. Today’s theme is melodic rock (some call it powerpop; you decide). Michael Carpenter – The Big Radio The liner notes for this set will disappoint: it may well be Carpenter’s last album; to paraphrase, he seems to feel that his head will feel better when he stops banging it

Album Review: Game Theory — Lolita Nation

I know people who are way-into the rock subgenre known as power pop. I’m one of those people myself, and I make no apologies for it. And while most aficionados of the style acknowledge the debt owed to earlier pioneers such as Badfinger, The Raspberries and a select few others from that era, the mention

Album Mini-review: The Junior League — “Also Rans”

File Next to: Sloan, The dB’s, Minus 5 Indie label Kool Kat Musik has carved out a solid (if exceedingly tiny) niche as a purveyor of power pop, that oft-maligned subgenre of music which features sharp hooks, strong melodies, and – say its detractors – a slavish lack of originality. But even listeners who aren’t

Album Mini-review: The Turnback — Are We There Yet?

File Next to: Greenberry Woods, Foo Fighters, Green Day Big, roaring guitars that recalls Foo Fighters as much as Cheap Trick are the calling card of the supremely melodic sophomore release from this New York City-based trio. Highly charged close harmonies are supported by muscular, no-frills backing that is catchy without making any obvious concessions

Album Mini-review: DM3 — West of Anywhere

File Next to: Shoes, Cheap Trick, Raspberries If you were American and into power pop, the 1990s was a decade filled with riches. You could blissfully ignore all that dreadful hair metal and the wooly, flannel-shirted grunge scene, and instead enjoy the high-octane, hook-filled pleasures of music from Jellyfish, Redd Kross, Matthew Sweet, Michael Penn,

November 100-word Reviews, Part 5

My current crop of hundred-word reviews wraps up with some odds and ends, all worth a listen. I generally don’t review from MP3 files, but in a few cases I make exceptions. Three of those are here. Fischer’s Flicker – Fornever and Never Scott Fischer operates under this nom de pop to make his uptempo,

Anton Barbeau’s Traveling Magic Act, Part 3

Continued from Part Two… Anton Barbeau feels similarly about progressive rock. “At one point, I decided, ‘Oh, I don’t like that stuff at all.’ But not long ago on one of the XTC [online] forums, people were debating how much of a prog band XTC was.” He continued, “And I see it now, even though

Anton Barbeau’s Traveling Magic Act, Part 2

Continued from Part One… Once Anton Barbeau realized that the new album wouldn’t be a Three Minute Tease project, he “started looking around for other ways of doing it. I was back in Sacramento, and I had always had musician friends there. So I called some of them up. And,” he added, “that’s normal for