From Alan Haber's Pure Pop
"Peter & the Penguins usher in the new beat(le-esque) era"
Peter and the Penguins are the latest, fab stewards of the good ship Beatle-esque to steer the ears of melodic pop fans and denizens of the beat music era to a rousing chorus of yeah, yeah, yeahs. A round of hearty handclaps, then, for these boys from Norway. Prepare to get Penguin-ized!
The pure pop pleasure of the songs on this CD cannot be denied. From Barefoot, "There's No Living Here Without You" takes its cues from a decidedly McCartney-ized reservoir of melodic structure, a la Macca's "My Brave Face" (the infectious bass line is pure, Paul). Not only is the basic structure of the infectious, mid-tempo popper "If You Wanna Leave Me for Somebody New" basically Beatle-esque (dig the instrumental section piano line for a warm nod back to early Fabs), the song is a veritable Sixties nod (don't miss the delectable Mamas and Papas moment in the middle-eight). For more Sixties pleasure, the marvelous "Barefoot" wears its Beach Boys worship on its intensely-melodic sleeve, no more so than during its gorgeous, opening a cappella section.
"She Took Me By Surprise" is a decidedly Beatle-esque, early era-style bopper. A hook-heavy chorus and a thumping bass, not to mention Harrison-esque DNA dripping from the lead guitar lines. The mid-tempo toe-tapper "Sweetheart" sports a particularly catchy chorus with great harmonies.
Mixed in with the group's ace originals is some nifty covers that showcase the boys' ability to bring contemporary life to the rich history of Sixties musical versatility. They remold Lavern Baker's stalwart "Bumble Bee" as a rocking Shadows workout played with a cowboy's sensibility.
Another track that is an absolutely standout, is the supremely infectious, vote-for-Ringo manifesto "There Goes Pete Best."
There's no doubt about it: Peter and the Penguins is the Beatle-esque "it" band of the moment. If Beatle-esque and beat pop are your game, then you're in for a great time, and you can't beat that.
February 7, 2008
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Peter & The Penguins "How To Choose A Sweetheart"
Last year on the IPO#11 disc a standout was "There Goes Pete Best," and this year has been chock full of Beatlesque bands making debuts this year. From The Poor Richards, Alan Bernhoft to Pete Best himself - the sound is just timeless and embedded in pop culture. Not even compared to other like-minded bands (The Fore, The Offbeat) this Norwegian band is easily a cut above the rest. That's because they take the template and enhance it - for example, "Barefoot" uses the Rickenbacker riffs, honey sweet Beach Boys choruses and sax touches to make a catchy song, not just imitate what's been done. Lots of highlights here that make them comparable to The Spongetones in quality (they even do a cover of "Here I Go Again"). "The Walk" has a jangle and beat thats just irresistible, and "She Took Me By Surprise" gets the early mop-top songwriting and guitar innocence down perfectly. "There's No Living Here Without You" updates the snappy Beatle ballad with a minor chords aplenty. Not every song is perfect, but with 14 tracks here, you'll find more than enough Mersey-inspired gems to keep your toe tapping. As long as bands like this keep making music, I will happily listen.
Labels: Highly Recommended by Powerpopaholic