Von Robinson is best described as musical force of nature with a mission, and this album is his first salvo. “Satellites and Totem Poles” is not just a great melodic slice of genius, but a scathing political commentary as well. “XXXtraordinary Rendition” sounds amazingly like classic Zumpano. The multi-choral harmonies of “Briana” as just as infectious and will stick in your head for days. “Time to think” is a great introspective mellow pop song that would sound at home on a Honeydogs album. Von Robinson surrounds himself with a highly talented cast of musicians, dubbed “His Own Universe” and offers his own socio-political spin in the lyrics of these great pop tunes. Just think, this his his first EP – I am just drooling in anticipation of a full length album. He is a really accessible artist and I hope you buy his album and encourage him to make more great music! A special thanks to fellow blogger, Powerpopulist for finding him first.
The Well Wishers are also known as power pop’s best secret. This album makes a bold departure from the Beatlesque style of the previous two albums. Here Jeff Shelton and his band are a creating a nice mix of The Shoes sound with the grit of Guided By Voices. The single “Seashells in the Sun” comes close to a big hit here. There is much to love about the new sound, from the 80’s styled backdrop with a great harmonies and excellent guitar work. “I’m in love” is another excellent song that will hook you and stay in your head for hours. “The Optimist” is the best GBV song that Robert Pollard never wrote. The REM styled “Soldiering” continues the war theme of this album. It even veers into Echo and The Bunnymen territory on the track “Broken Glass.” It’s hard not to enjoy such a consitently good album. Not Lame is offering this one with a whole bunch of goodies, so check the streaming link below to hear the whole thing. If you only want a small sample go to the MySpace page.
Here is a video from Enuff Z’nuff called “Freak” from Paraphernalia
On a related note, Enuff Znuff vocalist/guitarist Johnny Monaco has come out with a solo album. I have only heard the tracks on MySpace and his site so far, but it has all the makings of a must-have album filled with hook-filled catchy tunes. As expected, it’s close in sound to Enuff, with a bit more on the pop side of things. I hope to review the entire album soon. In the meantime, visit MySpace and download two tracks from JohnnyMonaco.com
If it’s ever been on K-Tel or Ronco, it’s in. If it features hand claps, cow bells, syrupy orchestration, walls of sound, wrecking crews, sha-la-las, toothy teen idols, candy-based metaphors for carnal acts or lyrics about hugging, squeezing and rocking all night long, it’s in. This is a great little site for those songs that are long forgotten. Enjoy! Thanks Martin!
In January, multi-talented instrumentalist David Vandervelde was on alot of indie playlists as the reincarnation of Marc Bolan and T.Rex. And they are not kidding folks. If you love early 70s glam rock then consider this a musical treat. “Jacket” is a great example of this, full of pounding downbeats and reverb guitar. “Nothin’ No” continues this style with a slow methodical guitar and drifts into classic Big Star territory (it’s a great track). The remaining tracks are okay – nothing to get too excited over. “Feet of a Liar” goes a bit overboard on the vocal reverb and would be much better as a simple acoustic ballad. The same problem occurs on “Can’t see your face anymore” but the chorus is much stronger and reminds me of the Hollies a little. It hurts that there is only eight tracks here and one of them is an instrumental. You can hear the entire album streaming on Vandervelde’s home page and purchase tracks on emusic. It’s worth it for your Glam fix.