Monday, November 13, 2023

Pop Marshal - Rejoice! CD


Fixing A Hole (2023)

Apologies for going such a long time without posting anything.  I've had some real life stuff going on that has made it a bit difficult to be on my normal schedule.  It's still ongoing so I might miss some time here and there in the next few weeks, but I am going to try to get things back to normal as much as I can.  I've got some records to get to before the end of the year, so I'm going to give it my best shot.

Today we have a CD, which isn't as common for me to pick up as vinyl, but when there's a band putting out great tunes, you go where the music is.  Plus, it's on a label in Japan where CD releases are still pretty common for punk rock bands.  The band, however, is not from Japan.  Pop Marshal formed in the wake of Headsparks calling it a day.  I've written about Headsparks before, fronted by Andy Barnard who I've known from his 90s bands of Donfisher, Ohno Express and Gan.  There's still a piece of me that hopes there's a lost Donfisher album out there somewhere that's been hidden all these years, but I digress...

Pop Marshal is very much the next logical step after the last Headsparks album.  You can't say they are all that dissimilar at their cores.  It's another album of outstanding, melodic punk rock that has the quintessential UK feel from the 90s that has always been my favorite scene in the world.  I always feel a similarity in Andy's bands with Hooton 3 Car.  There's something about the way his songs are structured and how the hooks reveal themselves that always reminds of one of my favorite all time bands.

This time out we've got ten songs and they've got fast paced pop songs like "Big Scene," "Less You Know" and "Act Normally."  These are balanced out nicely by some lower tunes that have, to me, more in common with The Last-era Leatherface like "More For Equals" and "Lie Low."  There's even a song the leans into surf sounds on "Bad Beach."  It's a diverse and easy to listen to album that's definitely one of my favorite things to come out this year.  For sure I wish this was on vinyl, but the CD has been spinning in heavy rotation ever since it came in.  Go out of your way to check this one out if you're a fan of the 90s UK scene.

Pop Marshal - Rejoice!:

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