New on Pure Pop Radio 05.15.17: Robyn Gibson’s Bob of the Pops Vol. 1, Cirrone, The Cool Whips, and More

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Spins and Reviews | 05.15.17
By Alan Haber – Pure Pop Radio

Robyn Gibson | Bob of the Pops Vol. 1 (2017)
bob of the pops front coverA buoyant exercise in the art of homage, Bob of the Pops Vol. 1 finds The Junipers’ multi-instrumentalist Robyn Gibson having a good old time putting his warm, wide-eyed spin on 14 favorite songs. This free download on Bandcamp is the bargain release of the year and, quite surely, one of the best collections we’ve heard in ages.

The reason for that? Bob of the Pops Vol. 1 is fun to listen to; every song essayed bears Gibson’s unmistakable stamp, his softhearted vocals casting a warm glow over every melody line and emotional keystone communicated. In his hands, these classic constructs breathe new life into familiar musical landscapes.

robyn gibsonThe Beatles’ “Nowhere Man,” certainly a familiar and iconic number, fairly drips with the joy Gibson obviously had recording it. The opening, harmony drenched a cappella couplet is sweetly delivered; the song reveals itself as a modern-day folk song, every harmonic element glimmering with life and hope. The Hollies’ “Listen to Me” adopts a bit of a softer pace than the original, the soft harmonies taking a smidge off of the edge of the proceedings for a bit of a warmer performance.

Similarly, The Who’s “I Can’t Reach You” feels more personal, and again it’s Gibson’s assured, sweet vocal harmonies that do the trick. Tracey Ullman’s 1983 top 10 “They Don’t Know” practically glows with charm. And just to show he has a sense of humor, or because he knows, as do we all (probably), Gibson rolls through the theme song to the 1970s television smash, Laverne and Shirley, in a kind of England Dan and John Ford Coley-meets-The Ramones way. Sort of sweet punk, short and delicious.

bob of the pops back coverA collection that purports to be brought to life by such musicians as born-as-anagrams Boryng Bison and Sonny Orbbig, bridges the gap between a Beatles classic and a well-known soundalike homage (The Rutles’ “With a Girl Like You”), and sits comfortably within a wrapper designed to mirror the presentation of the old British Top of the Pops album series (with the Leave it to Beaver-ish “Bob,” a staid pipe in hand, subbing for the usual sexy model depicted), deserves a place in your heart.

black box Now playing on Pure Pop Radio: “They Don’t Know,” “With a Girl Like You,” “I Can’t Reach You,” “Yes I Will,” “He Doesn’t Love You Like I Do,” “Strawberries are Growing in My Garden,” “Did I Say,” “Nowhere Man,” “How Long,” “Making Our Dreams Come True,” “Listen to Me,” and “The End/Listen for You,” a Gibson original
black box Where to Get It: Bandcamp

cirrone kings for a nightCirrone | Kings for a Night (2017)
The extended play, studio followup to Alessandro, Bruno, and Mirko Cirrone’s 2011 Uplands Park Road shares near total lineage with that classic album; four of its songs were first worked on during the Uplands sessions. The upbeat, Badfinger-ish pop-rockers “Everything’s Fine Now” and “It’s Gonna Be the Right Time,” the swaying charm of “Love Comes Again (Radio Edit),” and the gorgeous mid-tempo ballad, “Unforgotten Dream” continue the brothers’ time-honored tradition of mixing melodic vocalizing with strong instrumentation for a catchy, knockout musical punch. A full-length album is intended to follow this five-song taster, to which we say we can’t wait.

black box Now playing on Pure Pop Radio: “Everything’s Fine Now,” “It’s Gonna Be the Right Time,” “Unforgotten Dream,” and “Love Comes Again (Radio Edit)”
black box Where to Get It: CD Baby, Bandcamp

the cool whips baddiesThe Cool Whips | Baddies (2017)
Naturally, the follow-up to Portland, Oregon’s 2014 long-player debut Goodies goes by the name Baddies, but it’s a joke, son, so don’t get your knickers in a twist…unless your appetite for good old pop ‘n’ roll has bit the dust. To wit: The Farfisa-powered “Linda Lu,” all thump and bop and circumstance, is an exciting, primal listen; “Time Will Tell” sounds like it emerged through a time portal connected to a garage in 1965; “Splash” plops playfully beat by beat with Beatles bops; and “Inside Outsider” fashions an upbeat Monkees vibe for two toe-tapping minutes. Rollicking fun.

black box Now playing on Pure Pop Radio: “Another World,” “Splash,” “Linda Lu,” “There Must Have Been Sugar in It,” “Time Will Tell,” “Move Like That,” “Inside Outsider,” and “Live in a Dream”
black box Where to Get It: Bandcamp

Also added to the Pure Pop Radio playlist and currently spinning in rotation:

lisa mychols Lisa Mychols | “Loving You” (2017) CD Baby

red caravan ho humRed Caravan | “Ho Hum” (2017) Bandcamp

anchor and bear 2Anchor and Bear | “Hard to Say You’re Sorry” (2017)

r. stevie moore and jason falkner make it beR. Stevie Moore and Jason Falkner | Make It Be (2017) | “Sincero Amore,” “Don’t You Just Know It,” and “Play Myself Some Music” Kool Kat Musik, Amazon, Bandcamp

michael slawterMichael Slawter | An Assassination of Someone You Knew (2017) | “Count to 10,” “Too Dumb for You,” and “My Marion” Bandcamp

the deep six brand new dayThe Deep Six | “Brand New Day” (2017)

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We’re Spinning New Platters that Matter. It’s Pure Pop Radio’s New Music Wednesday !

new-blueWe’ve added to our playlist…again! Our aim is true and this time around, we’ve hit the jackpot: Lots of new artists and songs are now newly playing in rotation on Pure Pop Radio. Here is what we’ve introduced to the greatest mix of melodic pop music on Internet radio:

the-kennedysThe Kennedys | West Pete and Maura Kennedy have come up with what we believe to be their best work yet. As we said in our review of this outstanding album, “West is a journey taken along purposeful roads; it is a journey worth taking again and again.” (If you missed Alan’s review, click here.) We’ve added 11 songs from West: the title track, “Elegy,” “Sisters of the Road,” “Signs,” “Jubilee Time,” “Locket,” “Southern Jumbo,” “Travel Day Blues,” “The Queen of Hollywood High,” “Perfect Love,” and “Good, Better, Best.” You should add West to your music library today. File under Perfection.

Two-Weeks-Album-CoverStereo Tiger | Two Weeks It’s always thrilling to witness a band coming out of the gate with great songs. Picture us thrilled. Stereo Tiger’s Two Weeks makes a bid for best-of-the-year honors with this outstanding album. Lovers of seventies pop and gorgeous melodies will find much to savor here. We’ve added seven songs to our playlist: “Magic Balloon,” “Perfect World,” “Open Up Your Eyes,” “All These Years,” “Philly Girl,” “Did You Ever Love Me,” and “Push the Pencil.” Simply outstanding. There’s this to savor in the album’s credits: “Recorded in 10 Days. Mixed in 2 Days. Mastered in 1 Day.” To which we’d add “Loved in seconds.”

bill-demainBill DeMain | Extended Stay Of course, everyone, including you, knows Bill’s work as one-half of the great duo Swan Dive. But did you know that last year he released a masterful six-song EP called Extended Stay? Well, you do now. These pure pop gems are masterpieces of melody that will put a big smile on your face. From the lovely “Honeylove” to the Randy Newman-as-Harry Nilsson slice of joy, “In Your Letter” and the all-Nilsson-esque, clever love song, “Raggedy Man,” this is a hall-of-fame worthy recording. Bill’s sweet voice makes these songs come alive–each one is a joyous celebration of the purest pop. Your music collection is quite simply not complete without this one.

hot-knivesHot Knives | Hot Knives Another gem from Got Kinda Lost records (we added songs from their Promise album last week), this collection of single tracks and previously-unreleased material from the seventies is another great find. A mix of pop and rock, Hot Knives features terrific harmonies reminiscent of the Association, the Mamas and the Papas and Jefferson Airplane (yes, you read that correctly). Great melodies, too. We’re playing four songs in rotation: “Sooner or Later,” “Lovin’ You,” “I Hear the Wind Blow,” and “Winter’s Come.” Great stuff.

daniel-wylieDaniel Wylie’s Cosmic Rough Riders | “Another Wasted Day” We’re always up for a new slice of melodic wonder from Daniel Wylie. Now billed as Daniel Wylie’s Cosmic Rough Riders, the band has delivered another great tune in “Another Wasted Day.” Jangly and catchy, it’s from the forthcoming album, Chrome Cassettes. We can’t wait.

dana-countryman-every-kissDana Countryman | “Every Kiss Reminds Me of You” It has become regular practice around these parts to add a new or new-to-you song from one of our most favorite pop practitioners every time we post one of these station updates. Another new song from the forthcoming album Pop3! Welcome to my Time Warp!, this retro, hooky and genuinely wonderful song sounds like an outtake from the 5cc years of 10cc, a very good thing! Featuring guest turns from Dee Long (Klaatu), who plays electric guitar, and Pure Pop Radio fave Matt Tyson, who sings on the fade, this is another keeper from the one of our favorite wizards of wonder. Now playing in rotation.

red-caravanRed Caravan | Sleepless Night Red Caravan, aka Pete and John Carr, are making some cool sounds down under. The first fruits of their recording labors, “Sleepless Night” and “If I Return,” are electrically charged and pretty, acoustic melodic wonders, respectively. An album is on the near horizon. We await its debut. Meanwhile, here are two great songs now playing in rotation.

strangely-alrightStrangely Alright | “Come On” The latest release from Regan Lane and company is a propulsive pop song with a great, catchy melody and an in-your-face vocal. “Come On” pushes our buttons, most assuredly.

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That’s it for today. We love bringing you new songs and artists to savor! More new adds to the playlist coming soon. See you on the radio!

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