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Spins and Reviews | July 14, 2016 | by Alan Haber

Another basket teeming with new music added to the Pure Pop Radio playlist…

arvidson and butterfliesArvidson & Butterflies | Arvidson & Butterflies Ensconced in the Gothenburg, Sweden music scene playing in bands and then going solo with an album released in 2001, Roger Arvidson has fashioned a vehicle for his songs. The six-member Arvidson and Butterflies announce themselves with an explosive collection of dynamic pop songs, each one imbued with catchy melodies and played with verve, like the upbeat, hit-songs-in-the-making “Tired of Running” and “Changing All the Time.” The mid-tempo charmer “Will Follow” is nearly a song that the Byrds could have pulled off. The cover drawing, from French popster Tommy Lorente, is among the most attractive to grace a pop release in many years. Top drawer all the way.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio: “Tired of Running,” “Lights Go Out,” “Butterflies,” “Will Follow,” “Changing All the Time,” “Want What I Can’t Have,” and “Not a Dream.”

the del zorros marriedThe Del Zorros | “Yes I Want You (We’re Gonna be Married)” Monty and Stede continue their appropriation of all things melodically satisfying with a sweet, sentimental mid-tempo ballad that boils down to a single truth between two who love each other: “You’re the only one I want.” A pretty melody drives this song, perfect for weddings and toasting nuptials. Gorgeous.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio.

adam walsh thoughts in time 5Adam Walsh | Thoughts in Time Wonderful, rustic folk-pop, played in toto by Walsh, recorded in the quiet sanctity of Dublin’s Cabin Studios with Martin and Gibson acoustic guitars, Fender, Hofner and Epiphone guitars and basses, Pearl drums and a Korg synthesizer at the ready, all played by Walsh, making his songs come to melodic life. Like a determined river flowing at sunset, these tunes ripple through the senses: “Life With You,” pretty and determinedly driving, and “Rosemary,” a warm finger-picking exercise dripping with love, are decidedly tops. A single listener or a full house, lights lit silently, would be spellbound if Walsh were on stage, playing these songs. Really special.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio: “(I See Her Dance) Across the Ballroom” “(I’m a) Fool in Love,” “Drifting (Requiem for the Lost Soul),” “High Time (at Frisco Bay),” “Life With You,” “Rosemary,” “Sweet Dakota Blue,” “The River,” “Thoughts in Time,” “Waiting for Someone.”

Duerte Sanchez - Mournin' Glory Story - coverDuerte Sanchez | “Mournin’ Glory Story” Trading under cover of alias Duerte Sanchez, the Lunar Laugh’s Jared Lekites sings and percusses over Taylor Johnson’s nimble acoustic guitar and mellotron stylings, delivering a lovingly-rendered version of Harry Nilsson’s 1969 classic, “Mournin’ Glory Story.” Essential, and quite lovely.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio.

sally stitchesSally Stitches | End Up on 98 An offshoot of Vista Blue, the Hons, and 35 PSI, the technicolor-y named Sally Stitches offers up a powered, plugged-in bubblegum tune from their rocking EP that might have found a home in Buddah Record’s stable back in the good old days. Probably not, actually, but it’s chewy nonetheless and carries on its shoulders some catchy do-do-do-dos. Sing along.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio.

maps and his mothball fleet 1maps and his mothball fleet portraitMaps and His Mothball Fleet | Fighting Season The story goes: Matt Wanamaker, a Philadelphia railyard worker, goes to Afghanistan to build hospitals for the Navy. While he’s there, he records songs on a handheld cassette dictation machine to pass the time as the sting of war surrounds him. After he gets home and time passes, friends take his tapes and add overdubs and a musical record of his time away from home is complete. Releasing on August 5 via Azteca Records, Wanamaker’s diary of audio impressions painted with notes and words really resonates. “Walk With Me Madeline,” played out with lovely pedal steel, sounds like a song that would be sung around a campfire as emotions felt are recounted, and “Rocket Sled” is a pop song with a catchy chorus and just as much feeling. A particularly fine waxing in a year teeming with them.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio: “A Lot Becomes a Little,” “Walk With Me Madeline,” “Private Planes of the Old West,” and “Break Up With a Poet (Manas).”

the well wishersThe Well Wishers | Comes and Goes Pop and rock meet at the net and jump over together with a dozen slices of pop and roll fueled by multi-instrumentalist Jeff Shelton, who knows a thing or three about making a musical impact. Lisa Mychols adds a layer of sweetness to the choruses of speedy pop-rocker “Come Around,” just one song here sounding like an outtake from early R.E.M.; “In Love With” chimes in with upbeat balladry. Another home run from Shelton.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio: “Comes Around,” “Love Lies Last,” “Tomorrow,” “In Love With,” and “Nobody’s Dancing Alone.”

the beat parade rainy dayThe Beat Parade | “Rainy Day” Back just about a year and a half after first gaining spins here, Sydney, Australia’s Matthew Shacallis returns as part of a three-piece band with a jangly song about love supplying the light to cut through the cloudy, rain-soaked skies (“So put the kettle on/And make a tea/I will light the way for you to see”). A pretty melody combines with expert playing. Album on its way.
black box Now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio.

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Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes

Welcome to Wintry Mix Wednesday! More New Music Debuts!

As a wintry mix of this and that falls outside of the spacious Pure Pop Radio headquarters, we declare that of all the things we do here, adding new music to the playlist is our favorite task…job one, if truth be known. We’ve been busy, as usual, listening to new songs from favorite, heritage artists and new and upcoming folks with a guitar, keyboard and something to sing at the ready. Here’s some more of what we’ve debuted on the air during the past couple of days:

jonathan-rundman-look-upJonathan Rundman | Look Up For his first album of new songs in a decade, Jonathan Rundman let his guitars gather dust in the corner and took to a dizzying array of keyboards for a dazzling selection of songs supported by great players, including a number of slam-bang cameos from Parthenon Huxley and Brent Bourgeois, among others. Songs like the straight-ahead power pop of the jaunty “Prioritize Us” and “Northbound Traffic” to the early Simon and Garfunkel vibe of the gentle “Second Shelf Down” and the punchy, melodic closer, “No More Old Times,” Rundman scores big. Always, the singer’s gentle voice is up front and guiding these songs home. A welcome return for one of pop’s great talents, and an early candidate for best of the year honors. In addition to the aforementioned songs, we’re playing the following tunes in rotation: “The Science of Rockets,” “Helicopters of Love,” “Painter,” and “Home Unknown.”

the-blood-rush-hourThe Blood Rush Hour | And Then.. The Unthinkable Happened… Wales psychotherapist and musician Robert DeStefano returns with his fellow band members to unleash a grand, elegant sophomore effort, the follow up to 2012’s Shrink. Think 10cc for the digital age. The songs range from a toe-tapping 10cc/Jose Feliciano/Jethro Tull melange (the gorgeous, upbeat “Too Hard to Put Right,” with a short, shocking, Godley and Creme background vocal insert) to the charging pop of “Mr. Wonderful.” In between, you get the strings-fueled, medium-paced pop-rocker “Dancing by Yourself,” about accounting for your decisions in life (“The verdict is open/And you’ll only know when/You tire of dancing by yourself”), and a melodically charged, horns-fueled song about deception, “I Never Lied to You” (“I’ve always been open and honest, frank and transparent/Forthright and true/With fingers crossed I state categorically/I never lied to you”). We’re spinning nine songs in total, including those we’ve just mentioned. The others? “Ad Astra per Aspera,” “Run to the Roundhouse,” “(The Day I Finally) Stopped the War,” “A Song that Some Sing,” and “I See Something.” Another candidate for best of the year honors. Whew! We’re off and running this year, aren’t we?

seth-timbsSeth Timbs | “Center of Attention” and “The Only Pretty Girl in Town.” After five albums with the group Fluid Ounces and other musical pursuits, Nashville’s Seth Timbs turns his attention to a single of his own, comprising the catchy, beat-driven “Center of Attention” (featuring a surprise left rhythmic turn about halfway through), and the romantic tale of the girl who may just get away, “The Only Pretty Girl in Town.” A pretty pair, now playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio.

the-moogThe Moog | “So You Wanna Be in Love” Budapest, Hungary’s the Moog have released a driving slice of catchy pop in advance of the band’s upcoming EP release. “So You Wanna Be in Love” burrows its deep hook into your brain upon first listen, with a chorus that should help to propel this band forward, building on previous releases and tours here in America and abroad. We look forward to hearing the new EP; in the meantime, dig this cool tune.

matthew-shacallisMatthew Shacallis | Reach the Stars Only 21 years old, Sydney, Australia’s Matthew Shacallis originally started this collection as a university recording project. Now that the cat’s out of the bag, it’s becoming much more than that. It’s certainly caught our attention. From the jangly pop of “Nothing to Show” and the hit-worthy “Summer Sun” to the John Lennon ballad vibe of “Reach the Stars,” this is top shelf all the way. Welcome to Pure Pop Radio, Matthew. These songs are now spinning in rotation.

That’s it for today…just a taste of what’s new and now spinning in rotation at your home for the greatest melodic pop in the universe, Pure Pop Radio. Check back tomorrow for more new adds to our playlist!

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Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes
Click on the image to listen to Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio through players like iTunes