powerpop Archive

Still on Top of the World: Cheap Trick’s Tom Petersson (Part 2)

Continued from Part One… Petersson recalls the early days when the band was playing clubs. “People would come up to us and go, ‘God, I love your band, but you ought to dress your guitar player up like [Jimi] Hendrix.’ Or, ‘We kind of love your band, but when is your drummer going to get

Still on Top of the World: Cheap Trick’s Tom Petersson (Part 1)

Time certainly does fly. It was 40 years ago last February that Cheap Trick released its self-titled debut album. While the Rockford, Illinois foursome’s sound – standing on the edge (so to speak) between hard rock and power pop – took some time to catch on with the record-buying public, the band eventually became a

Album Mini-review: Chris Price — Stop Talking

File next to: Jellyfish, Wings After spending his time on production duties for obscure-yet-revered artists like Emitt Rhodes and Linda Perhacs, Chris Price has finally refocused his attention on his own music. Stop Talking is a fully realized album that – like the often mercurial artists he shepherds through the studio experience – is rightly

Album Mini-review: Derrick Anderson — A World of My Own

File next to: Redd Kross, Chris von Sneidern From a largely heretofore unknown quarter comes a winner of an album in a genre that doesn’t get enough appreciation. Up to now, Derrick Anderson has been best known as “the (black) guy in the Bangles.” As if that weren’t enough; playing bass in one of the

Teaming Up: Tommy Keene and Ivan Julian

Tommy Keene and Ivan Julian recently completed a dual solo tour; just ahead of that run, I spoke with Keene. It was the third time I had interviewed him since 2006. — bk Though he got his musical start in the Washington DC area, guitarist Tommy Keene has a real connection to the music scene

Capsule Reviews for May 2017, Part One

Thank You, Friends (Concord Bicycle Music) I remember a time when seemingly nobody knew about Big Star; happily for me, that was about the time I found “new old stock” vinyl copies of #1 Record and Radio City in a local record store. I was immediately hooked. As is its character, Big Star’s Third album

Quick Takes, Part Three

Today I take a quick look at ten archival releases of note. Tim Buckley — Wings: The Complete Singles 1966-1974 The music of Tim Buckley (yeah, late father of the late Jeff Buckley) has earned a reputation as difficult. And while I’m not here to flatly counter that impression, I must say that this collection

Quick Takes, Part Two

More quick-take reviews … Pop Co-op – Four State Solution Making an album via file sharing – instead of the old-fashioned method of gathering in a studio – is now a well-established practice. The title of this set refers to the approach used to make it. Steve Stoeckel’s name will be familiar to pop connoisseurs;

Album Review: The Jigsaw Seen — For the Discriminating Completist

File next to: Baby Lemonade, The Who, Fountains of Wayne Laboring just below the radar for more than a quarter century, Los Angeles-based The Jigsaw Seen have been releasing consistently satisfying records since its 1990 debut, Shortcut Through Clown Alley. The group’s body of work shows its musical inventiveness and effective synthesis of a wide

Sneakers: A Walk Through Powerpop History, Part 2

Continued from Part One … Speaking of wanting (or not wanting) to know, around the time that the original Sneakers EP was released, the band couldn’t get many gigs. In fact, according to Unofficial Sneakers Historian and bassist Robert Keely, Sneakers’ 2016 reunion performance at the Hopscotch Festival in Raleigh was exactly the band’s ninth