Archive for power pop

THE WHIFFS-Take A Whiff

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 22, 2017 by TheManicBlogger

I recently had the opportunity to listen to ‘Take A Whiff‘,  the new release from Kansas City, MO.’s, The Whiffs. The power-pop/rock band showcases their knack for writing wonderful ‘pop’ songs, filled with memorable melodies and nice harmonies, nestled in 2-3 minutes of pop heaven. There are cool guitar riffs and solos, catchy hooks, and nice changes. At times, the album feels like a throwback to an era of fast cars and jukeboxes, yet the sound  is timeless. This is simple, well written music, with a raw edge. And we like it.  A fun time; a 60’s dance party that you’ll want to invite all of your friends to. Definitely worth  getting up to take a whiff. Favorite tracks: “Backseat“, “Out Of Mind“, “I Need You Here“.

Check it out for yourself here, and get yourself a copy.

Bruce Tunkel

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 22, 2017 by TheManicBlogger

 

I started off with the intention of writing a review of Bruce Tunkel‘s latest release. Another New Jersey musician, I thought. I was sent several cds, and after listening to them, over and over again, I have discovered that Bruce Tunkel is not just another New Jersey musician.

The most recent release, 2017’s ‘Bittersweet‘, is a poignant look into the artist, filled with songs that deal with emotional upheaval, love, hope, and depression. There are wonderful melodies, accompanied by beautiful piano and powerfully soulful vocal tracks. The simplicity of using only piano and vocals, adds to the mood of the album, and touches the listener. The songs are well written, and to be honest, I really didn’t miss any additional instrumentation. The exception, “So Many Ways“, uses acoustic guitar and mandolin to exact the same emotions I felt in the other tracks. A brilliant release, one which you should get your hands on. You can check it out here.

We’ll Make It Up As We Go‘, a double cd released in 2015, is insanely good. A very different sound than that on ‘Bittersweet’, this album is filled with melodic Jersey rock songs, with influences as diverse as power-pop, country and blues infused throughout. I heard very cool guitar, organ, strings, and powerful vocals. The arrangements are dynamite, and I was unable to find a track I didn’t like. At times there is a familiarity to the album, and I can hear bits of Bon Jovi drifting in, only to become part of something bigger in the track. Wonderfully done. I only wish I had been aware of this album in 2015. Favorite tracks: ‘Losing Kind‘, ‘Drive Me Sane‘, ‘Dream Big‘,  and ‘Birthday Girl‘.Check it out here.

There was 1 project I was able to listen to, the 2017 release of The Susan Rumors debut album. A pop-rock-blues album that would be a dynamite addition to any collection. You can check out The Susan Rumors here: https://thesusanrumors.bandcamp.com/.

After my weekend spinning Bruce Tunkel cds, I have realized just what a talented artist he is. Multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, producer, songwriter, and arranger, able to pull several genres and fuse them into one cohesive album. Wonderful stuff.

Jenny & The Felines-‘Don’t Judge Me’

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 19, 2017 by TheManicBlogger

 

As a follow up to their 2013 album ‘Don’t Look Back‘, New Jersey’s Jenny & The Felines released the 9 track ‘Don’t Judge Me’ in March, 2017. 4 years in the making, and well worth the wait. Backed by a new clowder of cats, the disc is filled with catchy pop melodies, and is significantly more guitar focused. The songs are wonderfully written, encompassing influences from early 1960’s rock, country-blues, power pop, and rockabilly. There are memorable hooks, sweet harmonies, great changes, and way cool riffs.  The lyrics are brilliantly written, with no subject off limits, and I heard some incredible, yet subtle effects. Dynamite cat-pop! Get yourself invited to this feline fiesta, and pick up a copy. Favorite tracks: ‘Mrs. Pratt‘; ‘Jail Bird Johnny‘.

Check it out here:

 

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 21, 2016 by TheManicBlogger

 

 

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THE UNSWEPT-The Unswept Today

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2016 by TheManicBlogger

the unswept1Although it was released over 1 year ago, this album by The Unswept, deserves some recognition. So, the story goes, the 3 O’Brien cousins from Sheffield, England, were playing in local bands together. Following a hurriedly hushed up pre- international incident, they headed to Chicago and well, the rest is history. The album, The Unswept Today, released in April, 2015, contains 11 tracks of power-pop dynamite, filled with great melodies, choruses, and unforgettable hooks. The distinctive 12 string guitar is an exciting addition to the sound. There are wonderful changes, cool riffs and solos, and hand clapping. I am certain that I the unsweptalso heard some whistling on “Mellow Doubt“. The band has an insane feel for writing catchy pop songs with addictive melodies, and a gift for lyrics that are sung over some wonderfully simple arrangements. It has been told that the entire album was recorded on an analogue reel to reel, which only enhances the feel of the music. Favorite tracks: “Another Bubble“, which is reminiscent of early The Zombies; “Peace Of Mind“, with its Rockabilly vibe; “Get Away“; and “Surf Song (I Wish I Was A Beach Boy)“, a way cool tribute to The Beach Boys. A wonderful summer patio album. Play it loud. Play it often. Invite the whole neighborhood. A wonderful party. Check it out on their bandcamp page, and order your copy today.

 

 

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THE TURNBACK-Are We There Yet?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

New York City area band, The Turnback, released their new album Are We There Yet? with very little fanfare. There should have been a parade!!

turnback2The album opens with ‘Faketown‘,  a wonderfully aggressive track with a cool shuffle feel, and them shifts into a wonderous blend of 1960s pop and 1980s power pop. The sound is addictive! The vocals are dynamite. Just listen to ‘Revolution Girl‘  which has an exceptional  harmonized vocal track, and pay attention to the riff on ‘July‘ and ‘If I Were God‘. The hooks on ‘A Place For Me‘ and ‘First Song Of Summer‘ are outstanding.  It was incredibly difficult to pull a favorite track off of this album, however we have 2: ‘Five Days A Week‘ brings a wonderful melody, a sweet riff, great harmonies, and some cool changes together, and finishes with an incredible Beatlesque ending. And while we are on the subject of The Beatles, Turnback have placed a cover of The Beatles ‘Tomorrow Never Knows‘ on the album. Turns out to be one of the best covers of a Beatle song I have ever heard! The harmonies are to die for, and they even work in the riff from ‘Taxman’ for good measure. Exceptionally well done!

 

 

turnback1Are We There Yet is way cool Power Pop. I seem to be involved in a love affair with this album, It makes me happy, and asks for nothing in return. It has me singing around the house. The songs are exceptional, with great melodies, wonderful harmonies, dynamite bridges & choruses, and unforgettable hooks. The Turnback have delivered an incredibly great album, that I am referring to as Power Pop of the new millennium! The production is wonderful. There is a sweet balance here, with nothing over the top. A contender for The I Can’t Believe My Earz Top Indie Album of 2015!! It is pure power pop perfection!! Check it out here for yourself, and get a dozen or so copies. Give them to your family and friends. Or keep them all for yourself. I would. And if they ever hold a parade for this release, I will be there, front and centre, with a truckload of ticker tape.

 

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THE QUIET THINGS-The Fall

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2015 by TheManicBlogger

thequietthings2Toronto pop-rocksters, The Quiet Things released ‘The Fall‘ in March 2015. An amazing album, filled with incredible power pop songs from one of my new favorite bands. The tracks contain wonderful melodies, great changes, and dynamite arrangements. The vocals and harmonies rock, and I was impressed with the acoustic/electric mix throughout. Highlights include ‘Charmer“, with great changes, way cool guitar effects, and sweet harmonies; the energy of ‘Kiss On The Mouth‘; ‘One‘, with its brilliant acoustic-electric blend; and my favorite track, ‘The Fall ll‘, offers wonderful tempo changes, dynamite vocals, and a guitar solo, that will make you get your lighters out! And don’t forget to check out the riff on the extended version of ‘Secrets‘.

the quiet things1I am liking this album. The vocals are wonderful, and the songs are exceptional. Incredibly original music, with the ability to create mood. The songs are wonderfully original, unique, and way cool. From beginning to end, it will have you tapping your feet, and trying to sing along. It gets inside you, and you just can’t get it out! Not a bad thing though, since The Fall is insanely good!  Definitely a must have album, and certainly in contention for the I Can’t Believe My Earz Indie Album of The Year for 2015. Check out and like The Quiet Things on facebook,  and listen to and order 3 or 4 copies of The Fall.  http://thequietthingsmusic.bandcamp.com/album/the-fall Give a few to your friends. They will appreciate it!!!

 

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