Cheap Star: Speaking Like an Elephant (Z&Zoe Records, 2009)
Cheap Star is this french pop band I mentioned a while back whose album was partly produced by Jon Auer and partly by Ken Stringfellow. Like I said I ordered the album and now when I’ve been listening to it for a few days I have to say this is even greater than I ever could have imagined. I really can’t picture a fan of power pop who wouldn’t love this. Well maybe someone could complain that it sounds too much like The Posies, because it really does sound like them an awfully lot. And well having Ken and Jon singing bit of harmonies and adding a bit of sounds from Frosting On The Beater here and there does not really help me to get rid of that image. However, I don’t mind at all. I love The Posies and now I love Cheap Star.
Obviously it’s not just The Posies connection that I love about them. It may be the reason why I found them, but it’s their own excellent song material and that gorgeous singing that keeps me interested. This is just high quality pop album full of gorgeous melodies and beautiful harmonies. There’s also enough variation to maintain your interest. A lot of Guided By Voices in the title track, some of that Frosting On The Beater-ish power pop elsewhere and a plenty of pure and soft pop gems wrapped around them. Speaking Like An Elephant is a slice of pop heaven and it’s totally my kind of album. It might not be the most original release you’ll ever hear, but it perfectly captures all that was great in the 90’s power pop and beautifully brings it back to life. A truly wonderful album. Just give me a few more days and I probably will change that grade to full five hearts. Part of me would like to do that already.
Cheap Star at myspace
Koria Kitten Riot is the solo moniker for Antti Reikko, also the singer for the indie rock band Johnny Superhero. What I love about Koria Kitten Riot is that it reveals the softest side of his heart and for someone like me who has especially enjoyed Johnny Superhero’s softest and “poppiest” material this is obviously great news.
Koria Kitten Riot has already recorded and mixed an album by himself and is now looking for a record label to release it. I think it’s rather excellent material and according to last.fm I’ve listened those mp3s below 17 times since I got them 3 or 4 days ago. That probably proves how much I like the songs and if I had a label I would release this. Very beautiful singer-songwriter material that should fit well into popsters’ hearts.
Koria Kitten Riot: Everytime We Had To Say Goodbye
Koria Kitten Riot: The Wedding Waltz
Koria Kitten Riot: The Streets and Their Names
Oh and Koria Kitten Riot’s song called At the End of the World recently featured in a major finnish movie Toinen jalka haudasta. You’ll find this song below.
Koria Kitten Riot at myspace
And Johnny Superhero is still alive and well and working on a new album. There’s already some new songs on their myspace.
Johnny Superhero Website
Johnny Superhero at myspace
Hold the press! A quick news entry is in order, because bands like this are the reason onechord.net was once born.
I’m not sure did I wake into some alternative reality, because this morning I checked out my myspace account and found a new finnish pop band influenced by the greatest things in the world like The Posies, The Grays, Matthew Sweet, Nada Surf. Unfortunately this doesn’t happen too often, but thankfully now it did happen. The band is called Heartjet and it’s definitely not just the influences that matter. They are already a great powerpop band. Heartjet is Tuomas Strandman and Mikko Levonen (who also is/was in Sidelines) and they come from Lahti. They have recorded an album and are looking for a way to release it. So if you are looking for those onechord’s imaginary culture awards, release Heartjet’s album and you’ll get one.
Heartjet at myspace