Spring Forward Soundtrack: Power Pop

Pretty accurate in my book. Melody is key.

DaveSchmidt said:



cuethesun said:

Think Raspberries and Big Star as the founding fathers with Cheap Trick as ambassadors. Gotta have large guitars, rich, melodic verses, perhaps a clever B section leading into a soaring chorus (lush harmonies optional). A middle-eight to pique your interest and get it all done in under 3:30.

Hard to argue with that, other than I'd add ear-catching drums and encourage generosity with exceptions.

"Serious Fun": 4:40. cheese



Denmark produces power pop...


Not your standard PP formula, but if you like power pop, you might like (give it until about 0.35 when the PP aesthetic starts to kick in). And of course tambourines and harpsichord help...


These young uns (I think they graduated high school in 2013) make some great music.



(Hey, thanks for all of this, lanky. I'm at work today and have plans for tonight, so I might not get a chance to listen until sometime in E.D.T., but I definitely will.)


Speaking of the Hooters, we went to John Wesley Harding/John Stace's most recent "Cabinet of Wonders " at City Winery (its a must - go). Guests included Hooter's front man Eric Bazilian as well as Freedy Johnston, both power poppers of extraordinary pedigree. An upcoming show in April includes power pop luminary and ex DB Peter Holsapple and not too shabby songwriter Jules Shear . I may hit that one too.




Always thrilled to see a thread about my favorite rock subdivision. Thanks for all the stuff I haven't heard. Sorry to see Favours for Sailors have already called it quits. And Great Buidings sounded like The Rembrandts because two members were The Rembrandts.

I never miss a chance to share my vote for best power pop band ever, the criminally unknown Game Theory









lanky said:

Denmark produces power pop...

Excellent. So do former Stooges cover bands from Sweden.


Some of us will remember the frontman as Cousin Oliver and/or Ted and Georgette's son, among other credits.




dk50b said:

I never miss a chance to share my vote for best power pop band ever, the criminally unknown Game Theory

Thanks for the introduction; I was among the criminals.

The title of the second one reminded me of this:



I'm officially retracting the "3:30" limitation...as for clever B sections (which follows the verse) and launching into the soaring chorus, this is a clinic:


One more from Jordan Oakes's Yellow Pills collection: Jon Brion's former band the Bats.



There's a lot of swagger in there, although ironically not that much from the lead singer...good stuff

DaveSchmidt said:



lanky said:

Denmark produces power pop...

Excellent. So do former Stooges cover bands from Sweden.




cuethesun said:

I'm officially retracting the "3:30" limitation...as for clever B sections (which follows the verse) and launching into the soaring chorus, this is a clinic:

One of my favorite new-to-me's here so far.



lanky said:

There's a lot of swagger in there, although ironically not that much from the lead singer...good stuff

Yeah, I can't imagine what his Iggy must have been like (if it was indeed him). They wear a lot of classic influences on their sleeves, song by song. I do recommend their "Behind the Music" and "Communion" albums.


I dare you to hate this chorus:


Nice but I wish it were a bit dirtier...

cuethesun said:

I dare you to hate this chorus:



When this subject comes up, there should always be a nod to groups that kept the thing alive when it was way out of fashion - the Strawberries, Big Star, who else?


So let's continue to define this genre. I submit the following not as power pop, more as "polished punk" - what say the experts here? But regardless, it's just darn fun.



Jellyfish carried the torch for several years in the early 90's. Spilt Milk is my all-time favorite album. This track is one of many gems:


bub said:

When this subject comes up, there should always be a nod to groups that kept the thing alive when it was way out of fashion - the Strawberries, Big Star, who else?




bub said:

When this subject comes up, there should always be a nod to groups that kept the thing alive when it was way out of fashion - the Strawberries, Big Star, who else?

My recollection, which cuethesun touched on earlier: The Raspberries, Badfinger and Cheap Trick were pillars of the original heyday. Big Star wasn't really keeping anything alive at the time, but their rediscovery in the late '80s and early '90s was a powerful defibrillator.

It's that punk/New Wave/arena rock interregnum that was tough, and other than some one-hit wonders (the Romantics, the Records), Crenshaw is an out-of-step stalwart who springs to mind.

ETA: Maybe some overlap from Southern alt-rock bands like the dBs, the Connells, Let's Active. (Unlike j_r, I never really considered what R.E.M. was doing as power pop. Maybe my bad.)


Superdrag definitely carried the torch throughout the 90s, although sometimes the skewed a little rough....

Although not here. Power pop lover covers power pop icon, acoustically.

cuethesun said:

Jellyfish carried the torch for several years in the early 90's. Spilt Milk is my all-time favorite album. This track is one of many gems:



bub said:

When this subject comes up, there should always be a nod to groups that kept the thing alive when it was way out of fashion - the Strawberries, Big Star, who else?



And 40 years later, Cheap Trick never left. Dig these arpeggios!


DaveSchmidt said:



bub said:

When this subject comes up, there should always be a nod to groups that kept the thing alive when it was way out of fashion - the Strawberries, Big Star, who else?

My recollection, which cuethesun touched on earlier: The Raspberries, Badfinger and Cheap Trick were pillars of the original heyday. Big Star wasn't really keeping anything alive at the time, but their rediscovery in the late '80s and early '90s was a powerful defibrillator.

It's that punk/New Wave/arena rock interregnum that was tough, and other than some one-hit wonders (the Romantics, the Records), Crenshaw is an out-of-step stalwart who springs to mind.

ETA: Maybe some overlap from Southern alt-rock bands like the dBs, the Connells, Let's Active. (Unlike j_r, I never really considered what R.E.M. was doing as power pop. Maybe my bad.)




cuethesun said:

I dare you to hate this chorus:

I'm a sucker for 3/4 (and 6/8) time. See also: lanky's Blue Van track.

ETA: And "New Mistake"!



cuethesun said:

Jellyfish carried the torch for several years in the early 90's.

These future Cheap Trick collaborators, too, for a bit:



I meant the Rasberries before. The dangers of naming your band after fruit.

Speaking of fruit-like names, Crenshaw is at the top of the heap for me.

In the one hit wonder hall of fame, the Records' "Starry Eyes" may represent the essence of power pop more than any other single song.

Easier to define PP by what it isn't than what it is. It's not blues rock, or metal, or art rock, or hippie music. It's not punkin its raw early incarnation but in some way that I can't entirely articulate, at least not in an economy of words here, I've always felt that punk cleared the way for the resurgence of power pop in its 80s, 90s and beyond forms.




bub said:

Speaking of fruit-like names, Crenshaw

oh oh


If you're looking for a definition, I think you can just say "And Your Bird Can Sing."

http://www.mojvideo.com/video-the-beatles-and-your-bird-can-sing/b0595cf808457c62ebd3



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