Jangly power-pop

I was sitting home yesterday letting my laptop serve up what it wanted out of the 9.7 days’ worth of music it has in its innards, and Bleu’s "DDBDD" came on.

This, of course, brought me right back to the summer of 1993, the last summer I lived in Minneapolis.  I didn’t know it was to be my last summer – I managed the world’s fastest move back to the East coast on having been summarily accepted as a transfer to the University of Maine School of Law: two weeks from acceptance to classes starting.  I try to remember that summer when I get the idea that something isn’t doable in the time allotted.  If I found someone to take over my lease, packed my one-bedroom apartment, loaded the caboodle into a U-Haul and made the two-day trek from Minneapolis to Portland* in two weeks, I can bloody well do ANYTHING.

Sorry – digressions upon digressions.  Getting back to the point, "How on earth did an album released in 2002 bring you to 1993?" I hear you cry.

Two words: Andy Sturmer.  Andy Sturmer of the sadly short-lived band Jellyfish, which I saw live that summer, works with Bleu, and on some songs (as with "DDBDD," and "Could be Worse"), the result is so Jellyfish-like I get an absolute jones for more jangly, harmony-drenched, sunny-yet-slightly-bombastic power pop.

So I’m begging you: any recommendations?  The last.fm playlist in the sidebar to the right has some good examples of what I’m talking about.

*Hat tip to Dad, who did the driving, but only because he hates being driven.


  1. i don’t have time top post specific selections right now. consider this an ongoing discussion. :)

    the semantics,
    the oneders,
    the grays,
    the feeling,
    tears for fears,
    swan dive,
    shiina ringo,
    sam ashworth,
    readymade breakup,
    millard powers,
    jonatha brooke,
    jon brion,
    jason falkner,
    fountains of wayne,
    de novo dahl,
    david mead,
    checkpoint charley,
    butch walker,
    brad jones,
    adrian bourgeois

  2. Thanks, GK! Very helpful!

    I am a huge fan of Jonatha Brooke, and XTC and Tears for Fears are indeed the type of thing I was thinking about (“Season Cycle” was a favorite song in college), and I know The Grays also contain Jellyfish alum Jason Falkner, but I haven’t heard anything from them yet. The rest are either names I’m just familiar with and I don’t know if I’ve heard anything from them, or completely unfamiliar.

    New Music! Happy dance!

  3. Have you checked out “Alpacas Orgling” by L.E.O.? Because if you had been waiting all this time for a Bleu/Sturmer/Mike Viola collaboration where members of The Black Crowes and Hanson can coexist happily (and who hasn’t?), you’re very much in luck.

  4. I would check out any album called “Alpacas Orgling,” just for the name. It’s a bonus that it happens to contain all those characters.

  5. suzyfein says

    Definitely check out the brand new Bleu/Mike Viola project “The Major Labels”…it is amazing! http://www.myspace.com/themajorlabels. I’ve been playing it nonstop since I bought it at a Bleu show last week. You and I have very similar taste in tuneage. I second the Alpacas Orgling recommendation…it’s one of my faves.