Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Marc Martel - Thunderbolt & Lightning (Queen EP)

Marc Martel - former member of the band Downhere - became well-known because of his incredible voice and the similarities to the late great Freddie Mercury.


In 2011 he put a video on Youtube singing "Somebody To Love" - and it blew my mind (and about 15 million other viewers).


Since then he released a marvelous debut solo album (Impersonator), as well as a covers EP (My Way - Volume 1) and two Christmas EPs.

Now - in 2018 - a new record is out: Thunderbolt & Lighting. It consists of eight Queen songs. These songs are not just covers, they are new interpretations of the original songs. And they are amazing.


If you need any proof, just listen to his interpretation of Somebody To Love and You Take My Breath Away.


Incidentally he also did a live version of Bohemian Rhapsody (mind blown again):


Marc Martel hasn't just put out a record of Queen songs, he altered them and put them to a whole new level. I really hope for new original material from him - as well as take advantage of his gift of a voice for Mercury's songs.

Buy the CD and digital download directly at the official webite: www.marcmartelmusic.com

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

David Mead - Wherever You Are EP

    In 2002 David Mead created the later Wherever You Are EP aiming for a full album. Short after the recording David was dropped by RCA. The record was cut to a six songs EP and finally released by Eleven Thirty Records in 2005.

    The Wherever You Are EP is simply a perfect record. It became one of my top ten records ever. All six songs are extremely strong pieces of work.


    Track list:
    1. Wherever You Are
    2. Hold On
    3. Only a Dream
    4. Astronaut
    5. Make It Right
    6. How Much
    There are eleven (!) songs that were left off from the EP. David offered some of these unreleased tracks at his site mineandyours.com as a Christmas gift (site site is down by now). The tracks give you a hint how the full album would have sounded like. In short: it would have been awesome.

    These tracks are:
    • Wherever (a beautiful intro to the original album)
    • Attitude
    • Beauty (rerecorded for the Indiana album)
    • Growin’ Up
    • Subway
    • Little Sister
    • Patience
    • Oneplusone (rerecorded for the Indiana album)
    • All Is Forgiven  (unreleased)
    • How Will The Kids Get High (unreleased)
    • NYC Girl (unreleased)

    Does anyone of you, my fellow readers, know anything about the three unreleased tracks and the original track order?

    By the way, if you're interested in these eight outtakes, just post a comment or write an email: powerpopsquare@gmail.com .

    Monday, October 15, 2018

    Parthenon Huxley - This Is The One

    As pop music morphs and see-saws through different styles every few years, Parthenon Huxley continues to do his thing, his way.


    Over a span of nine albums it's now abundantly clear that catchy songs built on sing-along melodies, guitar hooks galore and real life-inspired lyrics are what Huxley was born to write.
    His latest album, This Is The One, may be his best yet.

    "I occasionally get the itch to follow the latest computer-based trend," says Huxley, "but it never lasts. I came up when making records was an exotic business run by professionals. I'll always record with live musicians in real studios on the best equipment. I'm rarely fashionable, but my catalogue is pretty consistent."

    Start with: Song For James, Off We Go, This Is The One, Running Home To You


    More info at: parthenonhuxley.com

    Friday, October 12, 2018

    David Mead - Cobra Pumps

    David Mead is back... well almost.
    In January 2019 his latest record - Cobra Pumps - will be out.


    Listen to a first song called "Head On Straight" (unplugged - or as he calls it truncated version) HERE. In the end you get a glimpse of the final song.

    There is no further info yet regarding CD/vinyl or digital release, crowd funding or an exact date, so watch this space!


    Mike Viola - Bitten and Cursed

    Just three months after the (digital) release of The American Egypt there's already a new record by Mike Viola.


    Bitten and Cursed is kind of a Halloween 2-track release. The title track includes a B-Side called It Does A Number On My Brain.

    Both are incredible songs. Bitten and Cursed is quite different to the American Egypt release, it's more of a straight rock record. And it will blow you away.

    Buy it digital at Amazon, iTunes, stream it on Spotify or just buy the vinyl record at Grandphony.com (there are a lot of sets with good stuff like pins, shirts, patches and stickers) 


    This is a live version of It Does A Number On My Brain:

    Sunday, September 16, 2018

    Mick Terry - Days Go By

    "Days Go By" is the follow up to 2010's debut "The Grown Ups" from UK based Mick Terry.


    Mick's long awaited, "difficult 2nd" album is a mix of Power Pop, '70's AOR, Motown and Americana combined with the melodic storytelling that Mick is known for.

    The lead single "Emily Come Back" is a fine example of his work. The record is filled with songs of IndiePop prettiness. "Ignorance Is Bliss" is my personal favourite - there are some awesome harmonies!

    Produced by Jim Boggia, the album features musicians like Tracy Bonham, Richard Causon (Ryan Adams, Jayhawks, Ray Davies), Dana Myzer (Cotton Mather, Farrah), Henrik Irgens (Natalie Imbruglia, Jamie Lawson). Rosalie Deighton also guests providing the sublime harmony vocals on the beautiful duet, "Riverbend".
    Recorded in London, Philadelphia and New York, these 10 new songs written by Mick and expertly arranged and curated by Jim Boggia are the sound of a truly magical collaboration between the artist and his producer.

    Start with: Ignorance Is Bliss, Emily Come Back, Everybody's Talking


    "Days Go By" will have its vinyl release date on 30th October 2018. Buy it here: https://mickterry.co.uk

    Tuesday, September 11, 2018

    Bird Streets (John Brodeur, Jason Falkner) (Review)

    Bird Streets is the musical endeavor of songwriter John Brodeur, who released his first solo recordings nearly two decades ago.  The record is a collaboration between Brodeur and power-pop legend Jason Falkner, and features guest appearances from Miranda Lee Richards and Luther Russell.


    Bird Streets became a mélange of John Brodeur's solo work and Jason Falkner's influences.

    If you are desperately looking for a new record by Dan Wilson / Semisonic ("Carry Me Home", "Last Resort"), PowerPop highlights ("Betting On The Sun", "Until The Crown"), Bleu ("Stop To Breathe") or Jellyfish - this is your record.
    And it may be nothing less than my personal record of the year.

    Listen to: Stop To Breathe, Betting On The Sun, Carry Me


    Mike Viola - The American Egypt (Review)

    The new album of Mike Viola - The American Egypt - is out NOW! The release was scheduled for late 2018, but Mike decided not to wait and got it out digitally (Vinyl and CD will follow in winter 2018).


    A new release by the one and only Mike Viola is always quite special to me. While Lurch or Hang on Mike are PowerPop records in perfection, there were also Just Before Dark or Acousto de Perfecto showing his insanely awesome singer-songwriter skills.
    So, there is "The American Egypt". And it's different, quite different.

    The American Egypt is multi layered, rich of complex harmonies and lyrics and you will need some time until it unfolds completely. But it's absolutely worth it.
    Just listen to the album from start to finish with good over-ear headphones!

    Collins is pure Rock 'n' Roll, Sunset America will brings you to tears with its lyrics and harmonies, Snow Face a 9 minute long (!) masterpiece and Dr. Frankenstein is musically from another world.

    Listen first to: King Kong Hand, Dr. Frankenstein, Collins, Sunset America

    You can stream it on Youtube and Apple Music or buy it at Amazon.com.

    New Music - September 2018

    Chris Price - Dalmatian (Vinyl)

    Chris Price will give the "Dalmatian" album the treatment it deserves: the Vinyl release will be around November 2018!


    Mike Viola - The American Egypt (CD/Vinyl)

    Mike Viola released his latest record "The American Egypt" surprisingly early in July 2018. The physical release (CD and Vinyl) is scheduled for winter 2018.
    Mike also talked about two EPs (?) and a single release of "Teenage Mutant Ninja" along with an exclusive B-Side.


    Marc Martel - My Way 2 - Queen EP 

    Marc Martel continues his EP series with number 2: The EP will be themed around Queen, which means it can only be marvelous (out October 19, 2018)!

    Thursday, September 6, 2018

    Bent Van Looy - Yours Truly

    Bent Van Looy is back with his 3rd record: "Yours Truly", produced (again) by Jason Falkner in Los Angeles.
    The first two albums ("Round The Bend", "Pyjama Days") are both a stunning piece of art.  I highly recommend to listen to them.


    "The Open Road" is the first single. Listen to it below.  "Yours Truly" will be released on the 5th of October 2018.