Sunday, February 13, 2011
Power Pop Explosion! 1980-1983: Vol. 1
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! What better way to celebrate than to listen to some Power Pop? I suggest that if you want to make your Valentine happy, then you should burn a copy of today’s playlist and give it to them. They will surely be grateful, and if they’re not, you should look for a new partner! But seriously, today I get to tackle my favorite Rock & Roll genre, and, perhaps my favorite decade of music. Actually, I think my favorite decade is 1976-1985, but I digress.
You may be asking yourself, “Why 1980-1983?” Great question. I’ve got a couple of reasons. The main reason is the sheer volume of artists that were making great Power Pop records in the 80s. When I started sorting the stuff I had, I quickly realized I needed to do the decade in sections. When the decade began, there really was sort of an explosion of Power Pop bands getting signed to record contracts.
This “Power Pop Explosion” probably started in 1978, but it was very much still in full swing by 1980. In the U.S., bands like the Cars, Cheap Trick, Blondie and the Knack were moving a lot of units. In the U.K., Elvis Costello, the Jam, Squeeze and Joe Jackson were doing quite well too. Success breeds imitation, so there were a lot of bands playing jangly guitars, singing three-part harmonies, and wearing their heart on their sleeves.
Another reason I picked 1983 as the cut-off has more to do with another series here at Burn and Shine. I started doing 25-year anniversary compilations in 2008. So the first year in that series was 1984. While I do intend to finish the decade at some point, I wanted to give these years the spotlight here.
As usual, I’ve tried to stay away from some of the most well known songs from the era. There are a lot of great Power Pop Compilations out there and I tried to stay away from the songs that come up again and again. In most cases, when a band or artist is well known, I’ve tried to choose a song from their catalog that is maybe slightly off the beaten path. For instance on today’s compilation, I chose the Cars’ “Don’t Go To Pieces” which was a b-side to their “Gimme Some Slack” single. Of course, I also chose Squeeze’s “Is That Love?” which made it into the Top 40 in the U.K., so I’m not afraid to throw in a bona fide classic! By the way, today’s compilation is made up entirely of artists who featured in the Birth of Power Pop Series. I almost subtitled this one, “The Returning Starters”, but then I couldn’t come up with subtitles for the other three comps, so I just went with the very boring “Vol. 1”. I won’t be doing the track-by-track commentaries this time, but if you have any questions about any of the songs, please fill free to ask me in the comments.
Power Pop Explosion! 1980-1983: Vol. 1
01. Paul Collins Beat, "All Over the World" 
02. Scientists, "Last Night" 
03. The Distractions, "Boys Cry"
04. The Fans, "You Don't Live Here Anymore" 
05. The Searchers, "Changing" 
06. 20/20, "Nuclear Boy" 
07. Squeeze, "Is That Love?" 
08. The Barracudas, "I Can't Pretend" 
09. Bram Tchaikovsky, "Missfortune" 
10. The Ramones, "I Need Your Love" 
11. The Romantics, "Forever Yours" 
12. Elvis Costello, "I Stand Accused" 
13. Cheap Trick, "I Can't Take It" 
14. Dave Edmunds, "Other Guys Girls" 
15. Nick Lowe, "My Heart Hurts" 
16. Dwight Twilley, "I'm Back Again" 
17. The Knack, "Just Wait and See" 
18. Shoes, "Only in My Sleep" 
19. The Pointed Sticks, "Part of the Noise" 
20. The Records, "Not So Much the Time" 
21. The Jam, "Man in the Corner Shop" 
22. Badfinger, "Because I Love You" 
23. The Cars, "Don't Go To Pieces" 
24. Secrets*, "Shy Around Girls" 
25. The Yachts, "A Fool Like You" 
Total Time: 1:17:00
Download it here: Power Pop Explosion! 1980-1983: Vol. 1
Not sure what is going on with Divshare, but until it gets resolved here is another link for this PPEV1: Megaupload