parodies by nacrowe
i am a total sucker for pop HOOKS.
as much as i also love BRUTALLY DISSONANT sonic assaults on the senses and UNCONVENTIONAL song structures and soundscapes (a la BIG BLACK, SWANS, EINSTURZENDE NEUBAUTEN, LOU REED and THROBBING GRISTLE), there is something to be said about listening to a WELL-CONSTRUCTED, ORCHESTRATED and PRODUCED piece of music that is LUSH and designed to delight the ears (a la THE BEACH BOYS, HARRY NILSSON, ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA). case in point: CHEAP TRICK. they didnt invent the wheel, but they sure as hell perfected the ROCK AND ROLL pop song template they inherited from THE BEATLES. and that is kind of the point of POWER POP, it being a LOOSE genre of like-minded 1970s and 80s musicians that took the earlier, STRIPPED-BACK aural aesthetic of the pre-PSYCHEDELIC early 1960s BEATLES records and attempted to write songs with every bit the same knack for MELODY, HARMONY and HOOKS, HOOKS, HOOKS.
in a lot of ways, the later PUNK ROCK bands were a more AGGRESSIVE, CONFRONTATIONAL cousin to the POWER POP movement as they both were attempting to return ROCK AND ROLL to its more pure and ELEMENTAL CHUCK BERRY energy rather than the BLOATED and UNATTAINABLE PROGRESSIVE ROCK of the period. i find myself consistently look back to POWER POP from this era, along with early 1970s GLAM ROCK, to find INTERESTING bands that sought to make SIMPLE, MEMORABLE music that hit you directly in the heart, rather than the brain. the more i listen to POWER POP, the more convinced i am that THE RAMONES were secret admirers of the genre.
embedded below is a DEER GOD RADIO episode on nonprofit internet radio station MAKERPARKRADIO.NYC that originally aired about three years ago on new years day 2020. the playlist includes POWER POP music from throughout the 1970s and 80s, as well as a few more recent bands that expand on the genre. enjoy!