The Perms and Jonathan Friedman

The Perms “The Aberdeen EP”
The Perms are back with their traditional punk pop sound on this short 4 song EP. “It’s Mania” starts us off with fuzz guitar riffs and catchy backing chants of “whoa-oh.” The title track is a bit more like Green Day fused with a slick studio production and expansive backing harmonies. My favorite here is the ear-worm “The Parent Thing” which reminds me of Adam Marsland or Bowling For Soup a little, and then it closes with the churning guitar rhythm of “Walk Away.” Overall a really good EP from a veteran band.

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Jonathan Friedman “Pop Rock Overflow”
Seattle singer/songwriter Friedman must have really loved the ’80s pop scene. On the opener “Alseep At The Wheel” he gives us a strong Hall and Oates vibe with echoing drums and dense production in the chorus. The synths are bathed all over “Jake Ryan” with all kinds of ’80s movie references in the lyrics. Friedman croons very much like Corey Hart on “Crazy Beautiful,” its one of the better songs here.”Live or Memorex” is another cultural reference from that day-glo decade.

Having lived through it, my recollections of that era’s pop were not my favorites, and every musical cliche is on display here. My tastes were more Elvis Costello, The Smithereens and The Romantics at the time. There is no denying Friedmans got talent, but it either comes together (“Everyone Knows You’re A Star”) or it really doesn’t work (“Too Early For Love”). Fans of this of this style will appreciate it more than I did.

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