Author Topic: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!  (Read 1751 times)

The Mollusk

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Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« on: February 21, 2021, 09:16:43 PM »
What does that title even mean, I don’t know. Power pop is like a joyous explosion of guitars? Let’s go with that.

There’s loads of great power pop, isn’t there? From the classics like “Bandwagonesque” and “In Color” and “#1 Record”, to the lesser appreciated stuff like Brakes or “Dookie” (arguably pop punk but I still think it fits).

One of my all time favourites is “Spilt Milk” by Jellyfish, just totally flamboyant and freewheeling, massively cheesy and rammed full of awesome hooks. They’re quite similar to Imperial Drag too, whose self-titled album I think is a real overlooked gem.

I’m eager to really gush my adoration for Brakes here but I’ll save it for a separate post later on. They are fucking superb though!

Please do not mention absolutely anything associated with The Beatles in this thread. Thanks.

SpiderChrist

  • "the law of averages says you'll survive"
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2021, 09:33:08 PM »
Please do not mention absolutely anything associated with The Beatles in this thread. Thanks.

Ah, I was about to post that Teenage Fan Club cover of Tell Me What You See.

And then I was going to post No Matter What by Badfinger.

Anyway - does this count?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJs_L7yq5qE

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2021, 10:20:40 PM »
Hi I am here to talk to you about Guided by Voices.

For all their bloody weird lo-fi strangeness at times, they had the ability to crank out an absurd number of superb power-pop tracks. Here are some to sample:
I Am a Tree
Man Called Aerodynamics
Game of Pricks
The Official Ironmen Rally Song
Fair Touching

I could go on.

Anyway - does this count?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJs_L7yq5qE
Abso-bloody-lutely. A power pop thread without Cheap Trick is like a CaB thread without The Beatles - not worth existing.

chveik

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2021, 10:21:19 PM »

Dr Syntax Head

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2021, 10:34:56 PM »

Dr Syntax Head

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2021, 10:38:06 PM »

Brundle-Fly

  • "Why don't you do something to help me?"
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2021, 10:40:21 PM »

One of my all time favourites is “Spilt Milk” by Jellyfish, just totally flamboyant and freewheeling, massively cheesy and rammed full of awesome hooks. They’re quite similar to Imperial Drag too, whose self-titled album I think is a real overlooked gem.


Spilt Milk is sublime, as is Bellybutton. But Imperial Drag were quite similar to Jellyfish because the band was formed by ex-Jellyfish member, Roger Manning Jnr. You knew that, right? His solo stuff is tasty too and was strangely hard to get hold of in the UK for ages.

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2021, 10:43:38 PM »
Back to the '70s for this obscurity by the wonderfully named The Smirks: American Patriots.

And much closer to the present day, me mate's band Fightmilk https://fightmilkisaband.bandcamp.com/track/four-star-hotel

famethrowa

  • mere rhetorical frippery
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2021, 11:02:06 PM »
Here's some proper 90s powerpop from The Posies, a real good powerpop band name:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kSOoPk2q280

Also a solid tune, Hey Beautiful by The Solids, some of you TV watchers might recognise the last 40 seconds

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UhOIPAVR-UE

Spilt Milk is sublime, as is Bellybutton. But Imperial Drag were quite similar to Jellyfish because the band was formed by ex-Jellyfish member, Roger Manning Jnr. You knew that, right? His solo stuff is tasty too and was strangely hard to get hold of in the UK for ages.

I always thought Jellyfish sounded rather like Queen, with the plinky pianos, spiky guitars and harmonies. I was/am also a devotee of Roger Manning's project The Moog Cookbook, had to order that CD from America!

And here's some more lovely Queen-style 90s powerpop from The Amateur Lovers:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XcMpdJ7baV4

non capisco

  • Don't wanna hear those vile trumpets anymore
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2021, 11:03:49 PM »
Here's some proper 90s powerpop from The Posies, a real good powerpop band name:

Solar Sister is my favourite of theirs, absolutely love that tune.

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2021, 11:12:46 PM »
If you're talking GBV....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Atm5JcFgwhc
Love this one too. I always find the 1999-2004 era patchy, with too many interchangeable ploddy songs, but when Bob was on form back then, he was superb.

My last GbV offering because I don't want to overwhelm the thread. Everywhere With Helicopter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2NBcN-2_F4&ab_channel=ClaphamJunction

Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2021, 12:05:00 AM »
How can we have mention of Jellyfish and not Jason Falkner's solo stuff, ye can't be serious Geoff, come awwwwn.

Afraid Himself To Be
Princessa
This Time

How about this 1995 banger from Stephen Duffy:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4rsJy7FizQ


easytarget

  • five gas lighters for a pound
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2021, 05:01:35 AM »
Solar Sister is my favourite of theirs, absolutely love that tune.
hi five

also 20 questions.

Frosting on the Beater is great.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

  • a hopeless vanity... a stupefyingly futile conceit
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2021, 05:25:38 AM »
Hi I am here to talk to you about Guided by Voices. For all their bloody weird lo-fi strangeness at times, they had the ability to crank out an absurd number of superb power-pop tracks.

Hell yeah. Here's another one: Glad Girls https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZsi9uEOJLg

Cuellar

  • I'm over here
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2021, 12:29:56 PM »
I posted this in one of the list threads can't remember which but I still like it's poppery

Charly Bliss - Blown to Bits



The Mollusk

  • Yeah, you better gasp collectively
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #17 on: February 23, 2021, 09:29:18 AM »
Spilt Milk is sublime, as is Bellybutton. But Imperial Drag were quite similar to Jellyfish because the band was formed by ex-Jellyfish member, Roger Manning Jnr. You knew that, right? His solo stuff is tasty too and was strangely hard to get hold of in the UK for ages.

YEAH I KNEW THAT ... I didn't know that.

Hi I am here to talk to you about Guided by Voices.

For all their bloody weird lo-fi strangeness at times, they had the ability to crank out an absurd number of superb power-pop tracks. Here are some to sample:
I Am a Tree
Man Called Aerodynamics
Game of Pricks
The Official Ironmen Rally Song
Fair Touching

I could go on.

Cheers for this. I've been daunted by their discography for years now so it's great to have this jumping-in point ticking my boxes right off the bat.[1] Could you point me in the direction of their best albums based off this sorta stuff? I dig lo-fi but I even more dig rollicking great pop tunes.
 1. "Jumping-In Point", "Ticking My Boxes" and "Right Off the Bat" could all be great power pop song titles.

Retinend

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #18 on: February 23, 2021, 09:33:55 AM »
If you want to try out an underrated power pop artist, try Mike Viola's album "Electro de Perfecto"

sample:
https://open.spotify.com/track/1w5qgcwCOfGGE2qIz0p48B?si=043ea5def8674d17
"Get You Back"

My favourite Power Pop artists:

1. Big Star
2. Todd Rundgren
3. Teenage Fanclub
4. Mike Viola
5. Jason Faulkner

Honorable mentions

Matthew Sweet
Game Theory
Pugwash

The Mollusk

  • Yeah, you better gasp collectively
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #19 on: February 23, 2021, 09:43:50 AM »
Here's an amazing performance from one of my favourite recorded live sessions:

Ben Folds Five - Underground (from Sessions at West 54th)

I fuckin love BF5 and am totally enamoured by their geeky tenderness which gets totally sandblasted away by the sheer exuberance of their performances. This whole show is a real belter (I highly recommend picking up the DVD) but this track in particular is just magnificent. The band gels so wonderfully together despite some occasional camera-shyness and during this song there's a group of baggy-clothed teenagers absolutely jamming the fuck out with huge grins on their faces throughout which makes it an extra joy to watch.

Retinend

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #20 on: February 23, 2021, 09:52:37 AM »
sample:
https://open.spotify.com/track/1w5qgcwCOfGGE2qIz0p48B?si=043ea5def8674d17
"Get You Back"

ooh, and "Soundtrack of My Summer" from the same album is also a modern Powerpop classic, in my book.

Brundle-Fly

  • "Why don't you do something to help me?"
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2021, 10:02:18 AM »

I always thought Jellyfish sounded rather like Queen, with the plinky pianos, spiky guitars and harmonies. I was/am also a devotee of Roger Manning's project The Moog Cookbook, had to order that CD from America!


You might like Roger's other side project then? Logan's Sanctuary. The soundtrack to the imaginary sequel to Logan's Run (1976)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wT4XF5FzDw

Sorry, derail.

Powerpop.

How about The Sugarplastic ?

Resin album.(2000)
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=OLAK5uy_lILZt63zPPzISLZuYP6exGevga9Zet_v4

Brundle-Fly

  • "Why don't you do something to help me?"
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2021, 10:09:16 AM »
YEAH I KNEW THAT ... I didn't know that.


Jellyfish were a nail bomb of solo careers, bands and vanity projects after they broke up. A Pete Frame Rock Family tree would look pretty sprawling.  The 'Happy Days' of rock, if you will?

Butchers Blind

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #23 on: February 23, 2021, 10:20:08 AM »
You might like Roger's other side project then? Logan's Sanctuary. The soundtrack to the imaginary sequel to Logan's Run (1976)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wT4XF5FzDw


Also check out The Lickerish Quartet which is Manning's latest project with two other Jellyfish alumni.

https://youtu.be/p8tzd6UNA4k


famethrowa

  • mere rhetorical frippery
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #24 on: February 23, 2021, 11:01:44 AM »
Here's an amazing performance from one of my favourite recorded live sessions:

Ben Folds Five - Underground (from Sessions at West 54th)

I fuckin love BF5 and am totally enamoured by their geeky tenderness which gets totally sandblasted away by the sheer exuberance of their performances. This whole show is a real belter (I highly recommend picking up the DVD) but this track in particular is just magnificent. The band gels so wonderfully together despite some occasional camera-shyness and during this song there's a group of baggy-clothed teenagers absolutely jamming the fuck out with huge grins on their faces throughout which makes it an extra joy to watch.

I did think about the Five and wondered do they qualify for this category? I guess sometimes they do. Here's my favourite powerpoppy song of theirs live on a radio show, there's real fire there in the playing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjQ_l782XXw

Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #25 on: February 23, 2021, 11:23:47 AM »
A few of my favourite power-pop tunes:

Phil Seymour - Baby It's You
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kpyWzKkdDg

The Plimsouls - Zero Hour
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARFCfBTEWoQ

Tommy Keene - Places That Are Gone
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_1fyj2CoFU

Let's Active - Every Word Means No
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWrDSAcWM5s

Bill Lloyd - Nothing Comes Close
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6QO77KmwvU

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #26 on: February 23, 2021, 11:38:19 AM »
Cheers for this. I've been daunted by their discography for years now so it's great to have this jumping-in point ticking my boxes right off the bat. Could you point me in the direction of their best albums based off this sorta stuff? I dig lo-fi but I even more dig rollicking great pop tunes.
Under the Bushes Under the Stars is a very good starting point. It was the first album they recorded in a professional studio, and the only four-track based album recorded by the 'classic' lineup in the '90s. Song-for-song, it's pretty spectacular.
Mag Earwhig! is a solid follow-up - a few weird lo-fi interludes, but the bulk of the album is pretty rocking power pop.
Do the Collapse is the their most 'produced' album, which some fans hate, but it's definitely worth a listen for huge poppy stuff. It opens with Teenage FBI, which maybe fits the term power pop most out of their catalogue.

The four albums after that until their initial split in 2004 are fairly safe bets, although they do also find Bob indulging his love of prog, so have their share of less catchy moments (albeit still in three minute form). It's also worth listening to Alien Lanes and Bee Thousand at some point, as they're the band's peak, songwriting-wise, even if they're recorded on four-tracks and have 30 second songs stitched together and weird noises. But songs like 'Gold Star for Robot Boy', 'Echos Myron' and 'Little Whirl' are unbeatable, regardless of production.

purlieu

  • Gertrude Stein said that's enough.
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2021, 11:49:16 AM »
A fair bit of The Damned v2 material fits the category, thinking about it. The likes of Smash it Up, Wait for the Blackout and Generals.

And how did I forget Eddie and the Hot Rods? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtYuDcf5R4w&ab_channel=EddieandtheHotRods-Topic

Head Gardener

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Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #28 on: February 23, 2021, 11:49:22 AM »

The Mollusk

  • Yeah, you better gasp collectively
Re: Pow! Pow! Power pop thread!
« Reply #29 on: February 23, 2021, 11:54:10 AM »
Under the Bushes Under the Stars is a very good starting point. It was the first album they recorded in a professional studio, and the only four-track based album recorded by the 'classic' lineup in the '90s. Song-for-song, it's pretty spectacular.
Mag Earwhig! is a solid follow-up - a few weird lo-fi interludes, but the bulk of the album is pretty rocking power pop.
Do the Collapse is the their most 'produced' album, which some fans hate, but it's definitely worth a listen for huge poppy stuff. It opens with Teenage FBI, which maybe fits the term power pop most out of their catalogue.

The four albums after that until their initial split in 2004 are fairly safe bets, although they do also find Bob indulging his love of prog, so have their share of less catchy moments (albeit still in three minute form). It's also worth listening to Alien Lanes and Bee Thousand at some point, as they're the band's peak, songwriting-wise, even if they're recorded on four-tracks and have 30 second songs stitched together and weird noises. But songs like 'Gold Star for Robot Boy', 'Echos Myron' and 'Little Whirl' are unbeatable, regardless of production.

Nice one purlz! Will be having a gander at these later on my way to/from the dentist for root canal treatment. Gonna need some good vibes to bookend having needles stuck in my gums and a fake nerve inserted into my tooth.

I did think about the Five and wondered do they qualify for this category? I guess sometimes they do. Here's my favourite powerpoppy song of theirs live on a radio show, there's real fire there in the playing:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjQ_l782XXw

Great tune!

They absolutely do qualify, yeah. They've got a bit more of a broad approach to their craft which incorporates jazz and show tunes (Jellyfish had both of these influences too though!) but overall I think their nerdy vibe, niche storytelling and bright, punchy hits set them as close to power pop as they could be to any other specific genre. Sure there's no guitar but there's an abundance of fuzzy bass and vocal harmonies which more than compensate.

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