The Top 25 Power Pop Albums of 2015

This was a very good year for power pop. In a few cases, albums I previously gave a rank of “8” are included in the top 25 and others I ranked “9” dropped off compared to the rest (instead of expanding my list). Sometimes ranking an album “8” or “9” at the time is based on its immediacy and doesn’t take into account if its a grower (aka an album that grows on you). Also this year I’ve elected not to make a video, but will include my 30 minute radio show*, which plays some of the music from selections below:


  1. Reno Bo “Lessons from a Shooting Star”
  2. Michael Carpenter “The Big Radio”
  3. Tommy Keene “Laugh In The Dark”
  4. Three Hour Tour “Action and Heroes”
  5. The Turnback “Are We There Yet?”
  6. Nick Piunti “Beyond The Static”
  7. Ryan Hamilton “Hell Of A Day”
  8. The Orange Peels “Begin the Begone”
  9.  Mooner “Masterpiece”
  10.  Sam Vicari “Giving Up”
  11.  Kurt Baker “Play It Cool”
  12.  The Connection “Labor Of Love”
  13.  Pop4 “Summer”
  14. Michael Sherwood & Christian Nesmith “Groovy Lemon Pie”
  15.  Ryan Allen & His Extra Arms “Heart String Soul”
  16. The Lunar Laugh “Apollo”
  17. Fireking “Double Trouble”
  18. Adam Levy “Naubinway”
  19. Ex-Norwegian “Pure Gold”
  20. Elvyn “Valley Of The Kilowatt Hour”
  21.  Coke Belda “Nummer Zwei”
  22.  Greg Pope “Fanboy”
  23.  Love Axe “South Dakota”
  24. Yorktown Lads “Songs About Girls and Other Disasters”
  25.  Late Cambrian “Golden Time”


  1. Andy Reed “Relay Vol.1” EP
  2. The New Trocaderos “Frenzy In The Hips”
  3. Hidden Pictures – California Plates
  4. Donny Brown “Hess Street”**
  5. The Zags – The Zags


International Pop Overthrow Vol. 18

Comment: One thing I noticed this year was several artists experiencing life altering events as inspirations for their music (Adam Levy, The Orange Peels, Ex-Norwegian) and some emulated the late 1970s for inspiration (Pop4, Andy Reed). But I still love a great melodic hook – and that’s what put them on this years list.

Tomorrow:  It was unusual to see so many rock veterans produce albums after long periods of inactivity, I will have a list and mini reviews of major label artists from 2015.
* Note: The radio show was made when my list wasn’t quiet finished, so please forgive any errors.

** Note: Technically this was a late 2014 album, but I reviewed it in 2015.