One great thing about David Bash’s IPO collection is that he has soldiered on (online comps be damned!), continuing to bring fresh power pop to the masses through CD format only. In the past few years he’s slowly opened up the scope of his collection, so you get some indie pop, pysche-pop, and other sub-genres represented. I’m happy to say Power Popaholic has reviewed many of these artists already, so I have my favorites but I’ll always get several new discoveries that I can pass along.
Each of the three discs has truly wondrous music that is curated by David, a dedicated music expert (something I can’t say about all those programmed, target-marketed radio stations). You’ll also find some weird stuff, like Sue Hedges “Liars ’n Lovers” which is like Lady GaGa lite, or the prog droning of Split Sofa‘s “10,000 Light Years From The Sun.”As we have three discs to go through, I’ll highlight my favorites:
Disc 1: The Bobbleheads are one of my favorite bands this year, so it’s great that they start things off with “Turn The Radio On” and also Greg Ieronimo’s cool “Roller Coaster Ride.” Kylie Hughes love letter to California pop “Calipopicana” is another keeper as is Secret Friend’s bouncy “Starting Today.” New discovery Chris Smith made a good impression with “No One Has To Know” and Northern Sugar’s “Ride” has a late 90’s Brit-pop feel.
Disc 2: A good example of something different is Alex Jules “The Key” where pop craft and composition are more important than guitar riffs. Another highlight is the mod-influenced, modern sounding “What More Can I Do” from Monogroove and the orchestral sweep of The Sharp Things “Flesh and Bone” which has a hint of classic Procol Harum. It’s also great to hear French power popper Tommy Lorente’s “Mirabelle” and the beautiful harmonies by The Tripping Souls’ “Place That I Love.”
Disc 3: As with past sets, this disc is a bit more inconsistent. Both Peter Fedofsky and B-Side give us Beach Boys influenced tunes, and Phonograph gives us the memorable “She Knows It.” The reliable Lisa Mychols 3 is “Ready For Action” and the rocking Beyond Veronica does a great job on “Crazy Girl.” I noticed a few older tunes here (Dave Birks “Speed Queen Mystery Date” is from 2012 and The Tor Guides “Dynamo” is from 2013) but they’re deserving anyway. A real buried gem here is The Newds “Go Getter,” with a hummable chorus that will stick in your head. Overall, like past IPO comps this one has a great mix of songs and most of them are highly recommended listening.