No Tricks, Lots of Treats (Singles and EPs)

The Connection “(Its A) Monsters’ Holiday”
One of our favorite bands has a timely holiday single available, so give “The Monster Mash” a break and try this NEW classic.

The Zags are back! Portland artist David Ricardo delivers a monster single in “A World Away,” a really catchy gem! And it’s a FREE download!

Stay “Always Here”

Brilliant jangle psyche-pop from Minneapolis, Minnesota also delves in a few covers like The Bee Gees “Every Christian Lion Hearted Man Will Show You” and The Kinks “Where Have All The Good Times Gone.” Produced By Owen Morris and featuring guitarist Andy Bell on “You Know It’s Right.” Highly Recommended.

Walty “I’m in Love With Everything”

Philly band goes all over the place from New Wave, Disco, Hard Rock and everything in between. Variety is the spice of this EP.

Hidden in the vaults of Capricorn Records USA for over 50 years, we found lost ’60s band Stone Ridge only has a single available. Fortunately for us, we also have a tribute EP featuring Vinnie Zumo, Jose Estragos and Joe Ricardello (The Modulators) that really make that song shine. And no trick folks, it’s Power Popaholic’s treat; A FREE download for your goodie bag!

Freebies, Singles and More: Dan Rico, Everet Almond, Justine and The Unclean, Andy Reed, YYY

Chicago musician Dan Rico’s take on glammed-up blues pop is solid here on “Flesh & Bone,” sure to bring up memories of Marc Bolan. “Gold Volvo” also features some nice guitar work.

Everet Almond delivers a demo EP, “The Starlight” is a good acoustic number with attitude. “Summertime” has that McCartney bass line, and “Call My Name” features piano by his son Waylon (age 6). A fun little EP that’s a FREE download.

Brand new single from the upcoming Rum Bar Records release Justine and the UncleanGet Unclean’ has lead singer Justine Covault pleading with her idiot boyfriend, also check out the related “Love Got Me Into This Mess” both are FREE Downloads and both rock!

The super talented Andy Reed released this single under the moniker The Reed Brothers featuring Jason Reed. This advance single will be part of a full-length concept album in 2018.

Minneapolis synth player YYY does the whole Pet Sounds album. Features many guests and to some, this is interpretation may be sacrilege. On the other hand, it’s tough to mess up Brian Wilson and some of this is quite lovely (“You Still Believe In Me” and “Caroline No”). A FREE download.

Monday Freebies and Singles

Cirrone’s music video debuted this Saturday with “All Night, All Right” from the EP Kings for A Night. It’s a great party tune!

Tom Baker and The Snakes fresh from their last album Lookout Tower we get a 2-fer for FREE from that album. Raw rock the way it was meant to be played.

Vista Blue is back with some timely Halloween music. As with most Vista Blue FREE music, it’s great garage doo-wop rock with nice fuzz guitar, fans of The Ramones will love this stuff. ENJOY!

Static In Verona, the band name for Chicago musician Rob Merz – has gone further away from slickness to a more bedroom pop aesthetic on his new full-length album. Secrets Like Shadows makes good use of the echoing fuzz production and electro-pop flourishes. Recommended songs “Sleeping In (Dreams),” “Burning Flowers,” and “Last Night.” FREE download.

Down Time is a Denver band with a sweet bedroom pop vibe, full of harmonies and echoing reverb. Great little EP “for a long desert drive.”

Freebie Friday: Travis Bretzer, Hector & The Leaves, Ricky Demetro

Edmonton indie pop songsmith Travis Bretzer is a jack of all trades musician, singer-songwriter who plays all of the instruments. The album’s first single “Are You Ever Gonna Change?” is a jangling power pop gem and the romantic “Peace, Love and Harmony” shows off his sunshine pop tendencies. “Up in Morning” is like a lost Mike Nesmith tune! One of the best FREE albums you’ll hear this year.  Time for me to investigate his back catalog. Also available in CD form on CDBaby.

Hector and The Leaves return with a bedroom pop treat. Tom Hector delivers the opener “Watching The World” in a hushed whisper. It stays quiet with acoustic guitar and his songwriting has improved tremendously from previous releases, “Call You Up” is a catchy gem that fans of Elliot Smith will eat up. Several songs sound like demos, but they are compelling. Music for those late nights with a mug of mint tea.

Way back at Power Popaholic Fest 3, Ricky Demetro was the lead singer in The Rhino House Band. Sadly, the band broke up and Ricky has the moved to Japan. Fortunately, he still likes to make music — this is more of a personal album, with no commercial aspirations as he does some experimental pop here. Oh yeah, and it’s a FREE download.

Cirrone and Curry Cuts’ 007 Tribute


Cirrone “Kings For A Night” EP

Italy’s Cirrone remains one of Europe’s top power pop bands and it’s great to hear them again. The opening single “All Right All Night” is a dance track that reminded me of 10cc mixed with The Strokes; cool, slick and super catchy. The mid-tempo “Everything’s fine now” is closer to the signature Cirrone sound, and its follow-up “It’s Gonna Be The Right Time” has a smooth bassline and clean backing harmonies with a West Coast rock feel.

The slow building ballad “Unforgotten Dream” again makes a case that the Cirrone brothers are a lost link to the greatness that was Badfinger. It ends on a bouncy note with “Love Comes Again,” and even though the song meanders into bluesy space (a la Pink Floyd) the guitar work is exceptional. What else can I say — another perfect power pop album destined to make my top 10 of 2017.


Andy Oliveri and the Mountaineers

Various Artists “Songs, Bond Songs.”

The music of the James Bond movies, like Bond himself, has had a hold on popular culture for over 50 years. The themes of most films have been ingrained into our brain through marketing and repetition over the years — so it makes sense to gather a list of top creative talent to re-interpret them. And like all of Andrew Curry’s compilations over the years, he gets the best power pop artists he can find and they go to work.

Lannie Flowers puts some guitar muscle into the “James Bond Theme” with a few other themes weaved into a John Barry medley of sorts. Another highlight of this collection is that many female-led songs are covered by males here, like The Stereo Twins (“From Russia With Love”) and Jason Berk (“Goldfinger”). Most artists are content to stay faithful to the original, some doing a better job than others; Popdudes (“Live and Let Die”) and Zack Jones (“All Time High”) capture the spirit of the songs perfectly.

Occasionally an artist goes off-script and makes the song much better, like Gary Frenay’s amazing take on “Moonraker” or Lisa Mychol’s high octane “Man With The Golden Gun.” A lot of quieter acoustic versions of themes too, like Wyatt Funderburk’s “Look Of Love” or the Mike Viola techno-ballad version of “Nobody Does It Better.” Other favorites include the duos of Jeff Litman and Andi Rae Healy on “You Only Live Twice” and Durga McBroom & Fernando Perdomo on “License To Kill.” Overall a great music value (26 tracks) and another Highly Recommended collection.

Bandcamp | CD Baby