Alan Haber's Pure Pop Radio is the premier website covering the melodic pop scene with in-depth reviews of new and new-to-you releases. Pure Pop Radio plays the greatest melodic pop in the universe 24 hours a day.
During the interview, Chris takes listeners on a tour of his magical time with Emitt, from the friends’ initial meeting in 2006 to Chris’s production of what may well wind up ranking as fans’ favorite Rhodes recording. The album, Rainbow Ends, releases this Friday, February 26, on CD and vinyl from Omnivore.
Rainbow Ends, tracks from which we are now proudly playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio, brings pop classicist Emitt Rhodes back into the spotlight with terrific songs so good they could only have come from this master of the pop form. Supporting Emitt on this album is a band stocked deep with top-flight musicians–many, if not most, familiar names to pop fans: Jellyfish’s Roger Joseph Manning, Jr., Jason Falkner, Fernando Perdomo, the Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs, Bleu and many more.
Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 8 pm ET (5 pm PT) and repeats on Sunday afternoons at 5 pm ET (2 pm PT). Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to more than 60 shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.
Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, Internet radio’s premiere melodic pop talk show, returns on Tuesday, February 9th, for the first of two brand-new installments. First up: Terry Draper, whose new album, Searching, Alan reviewed on January 21st, calling it the “first great album of 2016.” On February 16th, producer Chris Price will take listeners through every step along the way to the completion of Emitt Rhodes’ Rainbow Ends, the first album from the pop master in 43 years.
On February 9th at 8 pm ET (5 pm PT), Terry Draper engages with Alan in a lively discussion of his recently-released album, Searching, released by Bullseye Records of Canada. The album’s clever songwriting and three-dimensional arrangements, not to mention top-flight performances from Terry and guests such as Jamie Hoover and Ray Paul, and the usual vivid artwork created by Ted Jones, whose mark was indelibly left on the many Klaatu albums he illustrated, sit center stage. Terry talks about it all. You won’t want to miss a second.
Producer Chris Price takes listeners on a magical tour from the first time he met Emitt Rhodes through to the production and pending release of Emitt’s first album in 43 years, Rainbow Ends. This fantastic album brings the pop classicist back into the spotlight with terrific songs so good they could only have come from this master of the pop form. This chat brings new meaning to the idea of “in-depth,” the kind of interviews we’re known for. You’ll hear three songs from Rainbow Ends, and a bonus cover of a favorite Bee Gees song.
Set your alarm clocks for Tuesday, February 9th at 8 pm ET (5 pm PT) for Alan’s talk with Terry Draper, and Tuesday, February 16th at 8 pm ET (5 pm PT) for an in-depth chat with Chris Price, the producer of Emitt Rhodes’ forthcoming album, Rainbow Ends, being released by Omnivore Records on February 26th.
Pure Pop Radio: In Conversation, the premiere melodic pop interview program hosted by Alan Haber, airs Tuesday nights at 7 pm ET (4 pm PT) and repeats on Sunday afternoons at 5 pm ET (2 pm PT). Archived, podcast versions of interviews are posted on the In Conversation PodOmatic podcast page; click here to listen to more than 60 shows previously broadcast on Pure Pop Radio.
Emitt Rhodes | Rainbow Ends (Omnivore, 2016) A review by Alan Haber
Emitt Rhodes released three tremendous and influential solo albums during the first four years of the 1970s and then, as quick as that, withdrew from the pop music scene he helped to create and grow after the pressures of writing and recording more music than was realistically possible in a short period of time wore him down.
Now, 43 years after Emitt’s third album, Farewell to Paradise, was released, the artist has recorded a brand-new record, Rainbow Ends, lovingly produced by musician Chris Price. To say that this is another tremendous release by one of pop music’s favorite sons is hardly doing the project justice. It is an incontrovertible fact that this is one of those albums that not only fits into the current pop milieu, it transcends it; put simply, it is as perfect as it is possible to be.
Delivering his buoyant melodies with a rich and emotive vocal timbre, somewhat deeper and more resonant than before, Hawthorne, California’s other favorite son’s songs are played to perfection by a core group consisting of top-flight musicians including Price, Jellyfish’s Roger Joseph Manning Jr., Jason Falkner, Rooney’s Taylor Locke, Fernando Perdomo, the New Pornographers’ Joseph Seiders, and guests such as the Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs, Bleu, and ace utility player Probyn Gregory. To say that this is the collective musical dream team is quite simply putting it mildly.
The songs on Rainbow Ends are closer in approach and feel to those on Emitt’s Farewell to Paradise album than they are those on his self-titled debut and Mirror, but they are no less powerful and catchy. They may not be played by Emitt in his storied one-man-band mode, but it all sounds like it is as it should be, as if he were behind the kit or standing with a guitar draped over his shoulder (he does play acoustic guitar and piano on some songs).
Alternately playful and emotional, these songs feature all of the hallmarks that fans have come to expect and revere: beautiful, catchy melodies; inventive chord changes; and those velvety, smooth, sturdy and emotive vocals. Perhaps this is no more evident than on the emotional ballad “I Can’t Tell My Heart.” The song is somewhat reminiscent of Mirror‘s “Love Will Stone You,” and a showcase for Emitt’s committed, vocal delivery; the gorgeous melody and emotional lyrics combine to sketch the breakup of a relationship and a considered plea for the other party to embrace the option to heal.
The bluesy pop vibe of the playful and standout track “If I Knew Then” is a showcase for the core players’ talents: Roger Joseph Manning Jr.’s percussive, bass clef-heavy piano; Fernando Perdomo’s deep-voiced bass; Taylor Locke’s Paul McCartney-esque electric guitar riffs, sounding as if they were borrowed from McCartney’s “Let Me Roll It”; and Joseph Seider’s demolition derby drumming are all top-notch.
“Friday’s Love” paints an emotional picture of a weekend romantic encounter that, against all odds, sparks the hope that the connection will roll on into the next week and beyond. Strong harmony vocals, sung by a grouping that includes Bleu, are especially affecting. The closing, title song finds all musical hands on deck for a plea for hope for peace in one’s life in the here-and-now and in the coming days. “I wanna be with the ones I love/Hold them close, give them hugs,” Emitt sings. It’s the universal wish, hopefully come true.
Rainbow Ends is the sweet payoff realized after more than four decades of hope for more music from a true, legendary artist, but really it’s more than that; it’s the passage of dreams into the real, the realization of what was wanted becoming true. Welcome back, Emitt Rhodes.
Alan Haber’s Pure Pop Radio is the original 24-hour Internet radio station playing the greatest melodic pop music from the ’60s to today. From the Beatles to the Spongetones, the Nines, Kurt Baker, the Connection and the New Trocaderos, we play the hits and a whole lot more. Tune in by clicking on one of the listen links below.