Permanent Press (PPCD 52716)
Man, if one
of these tunes doesn't get played on the radio, then there's
simply no damned hope for pop music anymore. It's an unfortunate fact
life nowadays that the vision of pop music championed by fans of melodic
rock n' roll is rarely actually popular. Reviled by smug critics who
wouldn't know a decent hook if it roughed 'em up and left 'em for
ignored by an indifferent public that simply doesn't know, pure pop
become, incongruously, a cult taste. It's being played to an insular
audience that can't fathom why this stuff isn't as massively popular
proud POP! label implies it should be. It means that a lot of fine
records, eminently worthy of a wider audience, remain largely unheard
but a discerning few of the faithful.
The Supers break out of that whole thing. On the band's
debut album Spklanng!, the Toronto-based group shows an easy command
classic pop style, without seeming the least bit retro. originally
Canada last year (the U.S. version differs by two tracks) , the deceptively
mild-mannered Spklanng! fights a never-ending battle for truth , justice
the rockin' -pop way. At the risk of belaboring the comic-book analogy,
must be said that The Supers' efforts border on the heroic.
track, "Secret," is tailor-made for contemporary hit
radio:while that could certainly be interpreted as a slam, given CHR's
current penchant for bland boy "bands," "Secret"
is a perfectly inviting,
mid-tempo gem that merits some serious mainstream airplay. "Turn,"
Want to Sleep" and "A Stitch in Time" are similarly
"Turn", in particular adding considerable oomph to the mix.
"So Many Crooks,
" "Luck and Skill" and "Pill", while perhaps
not ideal singles, add to the
overall vibe of a pleasant, engaging record that anyone with a fondness
hooks 'n' harmonies would want to investigate.
does threaten to drag a bit in the middle, on the back-to-back
play of "Only You" and "1+1=3" slows the proceedings
down to a sleepwalk,
but even "Only You" has a subtle undercurrent of buoyancy
that lifts it
above Backstreet Boys status. It's enough to restore your faith in
music. Maybe it's even enough to restore the pop to popular music.
guys on the radio, where they belong.
Goldmine Magazine May 4th, 2001