Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

March MP3s: Pop

March 6, 2016

Pop

1. “Pigtails” – Sean Magee. This is the sort of throw-your-hands-in-the-air pop that makes 13-year-olds think of Bastille and 30-somethings think of the Ben Folds Five. This is just too fun. The video is also incredibly fun.

2. “I Really Love You” – Gibbz. Humongously catchy chorus, almost-equally-catchy verses, perky drum machines, crunchy guitars for emphasis, and the ability to sing curse words at the top of your lungs. HELLOOOOO SUMMER

3. “Can’t Stop Moving” – Sans Parents. An escapee from the mid-’00s moment where ’60s garage, dance-rock, and indie-rock all converged and became stuff like The Caesars. The chorus is just rad.

4. “Sport’s Drinking Again” – The Sharp Things. Next up in the “things I didn’t ever think I’d sing out loud” category: “I’m drinking again / alleluia.” Add in jubilant choir, triumphant trumpets, chamber orchestra, and full rock band, and you’ve got this enormous three-minute wonder.

5. “Nonnie” – Flaural. I don’t get out to many rock shows these days, but Flaural’s psych-rock has enough whimsical, Alice in Wonderland indie-pop sensibility in its guitar melodies that it hooked me.

6. “Ethics in Gaming” – Marc with a C. Marc is always able to wring meaningful lyrics out of goofy, sometimes-esoteric pop culture in his well-developed fourth-wall-breaking style. Then he marries those lyrics to ridiculously catchy power-pop. Everyone wins.

7. “Dream Catching” – Fell Runner. Like a deconstructed Vampire Weekend, Fell Runner slo-mos their way through effervescent pop. It is uniquely ear-catching.

8. “Burn Baby Burn” – Stevie Cliff. Prince would be proud of this sly, funky, sexy jam.

9. “High” – Breaking Heights. Sometimes you need a walking-speed, head-bobbing Brit-pop-inspired tune. Stay tuned for the surprise halfway through.

10. “Staying Awake” – Why We Love. Yelpy, chirpy, jumpy, hectic, super-fun indie-pop.

Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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