When you release an album called “King Of Power Pop!”, you’re making a pretty big sweeping statement and one that’s sure to have the critics ready to shoot down. Paul Collins has been around long enough to have perfected this craft of power pop song writing so I am sure he’s ready for anything they’re ready to dish out at him. Including me. So I gave this a cranking and have to say, I was hooked in immediately. Wow! This guy just knows how to write a great tune. Under the guidance of producer Jim Diamond, Collins’ simple yet effective and highly infectious ‘King Of Power Pop’ is track after track of golden gems fit for any jukebox across the globe.
Kicking off with a booty shakin’ number called “C’mon Let’s Go!”, a smile widened on my face and my feet were tappin’ uncontrollably. This is good. Damn good! The only thing that’s missing here is the weather. If it was Summer here in Australia I’d crank this album and fire up the BBQ. Hell, in a few months I am sure we’ll do that anyway. Excellent! The songs are short and sweet. They get in and out before they outstay their welcome. You get 13 tracks in under 32 minutes. There’s anthems (“Do You Wanna Love Me?”), there’s power ballads (“Hurting’s On My Side”), subtle ballads (“Many Roads To Follow”), and even a cover of The Box Tops’ probably most well known tune, “The Letter”. The latter of which I am sure was done in tribute to the late Alex Chilton; former singer of the Box Tops and later of Big Star fame who sadly passed on this year. Should I also add that Nikki Corvette and Wally Palmar of The Romantics are guests on this album? I shouldn’t even have to as the album sells itself on the strength of its songs alone.
This album is like the Beach Boys and The Beatles partying with The Replacements and the Ramones. It’s a feel good bunch of songs that are much welcomed in a time when there’s so much negativity in the world today. Sometimes you just need to unwind and forget about your shitty job tomorrow or your ex-girlfriend banging your best friend and just let yourself be one with the music.
So is Mr. Collins the King Of Power Pop? Maybe. Maybe not. But either way, this album is definitely up there with the best of them. Don’t believe me? Tune in to the next episode of the Long Gone Loser Rock Show for a track by track review of this rockin’ little number. Let’s pop!