Sometimes I find great CD’s when I listen to those cool power pop radio stations at www.live365.com (e.g. Power Pop Jangle Radio, Power Pop Guitars SFSB and d23 Power Pop Plus). The sound quality isn’t the greatest, but you get the point of the songs you hear.
So, I tend to make notes whenever I hear something exceptionally interesting. I occasionally check my markings and see if they’re available on CD for a reasonable price. This is what happened with me and The Shame Idols. I heard their song She’s on the Phone, and for some reason thought it was really, really good at the moment. Then, I got the entire Rocket Cat (1998) album, listened to it and was happy about what I heard.
Most of The Shame Idols members have a background in a punk band called Working Mothers, and their singer-songwriter Tim Boykin used to be a part of the alternative rock band Carnival Season. What these guys have come up with is pop music characterized by loud guitars, great melodies and some pretty good harmonies. I think this solid guitar sound quite brings Weezer to mind. Many of these songs are nicely uptempo and give some nice pop-punk vibes.
I think Rocket Cat is generally different from many other power pop albums. That is because this album contains hooks but they aren't as obvious as power pop hooks usually are. However, I don’t find that a bad thing at all. There is something uniquely charming about these songs. What makes this music very enjoyable is the combination of great guitar sounds and the overall smooth and easy-going spirit. So, although this music is very loud and rocking, it might even manage to make you calm. Also, you will notice that the melodies are playing in your head once you've listened to them a couple of times.
Every song on this album is enjoyable, and the song running order is great. She’s on the Phone is obviously very good but it’s also very easy to pick up such favourites as Neon Geyser, Picture of a Clown, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, My Star and I Don’t Trust You. I’m sure that many people would find this music a bit dull and monotonic but personally I don’t really support those views. Good songs, sounds and melodies make this CD a great purchase.
The Shame Idols at MySpace