Monday, December 28, 2009

The PPO Top Ten Power Pop Albums of 2009

Like last Christmas, I am sitting here up to my ass in snow thinking about the great music that has been presented to us this year and I am finding it difficult to come up with just 10!!
So many talented artists and groups, It is hard to make a decision! I am basing my list on the fact that most of these discs were in heavy rotation at home, work and in my car.
Well, here you are...

10) Biscuit - Cinnamon Fade Out - By the album title alone, one would assume “Cinnamon Fade Out” would contain loads of 60’s psychedelic pop rock. Guess what? You won’t be disappointed. Think Buffalo Springfield meets The Who meets the Posies. Produced by Santi Garcia and mastered by Bob Weston (of Shellac), this is their fourth album. Having played with the MC5, The Dexateens and Boss Martians, Biscuit is renowned for their live powerful performances.

9) The Tomorrows - Jupiter Optimus Maximus - This is what a Power Pop Album should sound like! Marc Stewart and Scott Fletcher withTony Kerr and Adrian Buckleyalong for the ride, are building on the model of their former band, The Roswells, but taking it one step further. Crunchy guitars and faultless melodies plus really groovy suits make them all that much better. Look out for these guys in the future.

8) The Research Turtles - The Research Turtles - These guys are the best band you have never heard of! Taking cues from The Beatles and Weezer, Research Turtles bring an energetic mix of pop and rock that is fun, honest, and at times nostalgic. Their sound is reminiscent of 60s-era British invasion rock with thick guitars, driving beats, and simple pop structures. The “Turtles” consist of brothers Jud and Joe Norman, Logan Fontenot, and Blake Thibodeaux.

7) The Riffbackers - The Curtain Shop And Alterations - Fausto Martin and Nacho García have gathered the remnants of their former band, The Winnerys, and produced a first class album. Inspired by late 70’s Power Pop, The Curtain Shop and Alterations is loaded with reverberating riffs and hook-packed pop vocals. The Riffbackers craft great pop music that hits you from the first note to the very last.

6) Stephen Lawrenson - Somewhere Else - Calling all Jeff Lynne fans...or Beatles fans...better yet, calling everyone, you need to listen to this! Combining refined dense layers of harmonies and passionate love for late 70’s Power Pop, the sophomore release from the Pennsylvania singer/songwriter is a not textbook pop album, but rather the student showing the teachers how it should be done… And it is done well!

5) Bobby Emmett - Learning Love - A power pop singer-songwriter from Detroit, Bobby Emmett has offered up this Power Pop goodie, for lack of a better expression, filled to the brim with catchy melodies and unforgettable riffs, combined with the fact that vintage gear from that era was used to create a classic power pop feel, makes for an incredible debut... and it makes me ready to hear exactly what Bobby Emmett give us next.

4) The Resonars - That Evil Drone - Presenting 12 tracks from Tucson Arizona's finest "unknown" band! Released on CD in the spring (so this counts!), Matt Rendon, the talent behind curtain, intermingles psychedelic melodies, driving guitars and some well placed fuzz into an appealing blend of Beatles meet the Byrds, constructing a most enjoyable album. Another winner from The Resonars! As if we expected less.

3) The Madd - The Madd Are Pretty Quick! - Okay, take The Beatles, The Hollies, The Electric Prunes and any other band from that era and add some high-octane caffeine, blend it on "11" and you got The Madd. Featuring catchy choruses, hyperactive guitars, a pumping organ, the furious paced drumming of Slammin 'Marty Graveyard, and the fabulous voice of Dave von Raven, The Madd do not disappoint on their sophomore release. 15 addictive songs, each better than the last, it is difficult to put this album down, even more difficult to wipe the smile off your face when you are finished listening to it.

2) Tony Cox - Unpublished - From the start songwriter Tony Cox has given us one of the most consistent and listenable pop records of the last ten years, maybe one of the top ten albums of this decade. With the help of Nigel Clark and Darren Finlan, Tony has presented us with some of the most perfect pop songs I have heard in a long time. Intense layers of guitar tracks provided by Tony and brilliant vocals of Nigel Clark provide a Sunshine Pop meets modern inspiration sound that will not be disappoint.

1) Gidgets Ga Ga - The Big Bong Fiasco - It’s Gidgets Ga Ga from Chicago, Illinois! This three-piece power pop trio is the real deal. Combining classic modern rock and a smartness of the past pop music ala Cheap Trick, they have perfected the 3-minute song! Crunchy, face melting guitars, high energy vocals intertwined with unbeatable pop sensibility, Gidgets Ga Ga has bestowed upon us an unquestionable pearl of Power Pop goodness. Thank you Gidgets Ga Ga!

The PPO Top Ten Power Pop Albums of 2009/rs

The PPO Top Ten Power Pop Albums of 2009/mu

1. Pity Her / The Tomorrows
2. Stupid Rock Star's Dream / The Riffbackers
3. Let Me Play / Biscuit
4. Welcome To My World / Tony Cox
5. Damn! / Gidgets Ga Ga
6. Hey! / Stephen Lawrenson
7. Bird Using Bird / The Resonars
8. Love Is Real / Bobby Emmett
9. Try / The Madd
10.Breakdown / Biscuit
11.Damn / Research Turtles
12.Feel Real Love / Tony Cox
13.Baby You're A Star / Gidgets Ga Ga
14.Let's Go / Stephen Lawrenson
15.Queen Of Hearts / Bobby Emmett
16.One Part Moan / The Resonars
17.Don't Ask Me Love / The Madd
18.Jupiter Optimus Maximus / The Tomorrows
19.Sometimes / The Riffbackers
20.The Riff Song / Research Turtles