summertime records. The new 7" from the Kurt Baker Band is pretty much the ultimate summer smash. It reminds me of the hot weather days of my youth, when I would drink glass bottles of Coke by the pool while basking in the crunchy guitars and massive hooks of the latest radio hits. With last year's Brand New Beat (F & L's 2012 album of the year) still part of my regular rotation, it was a wonderful surprise to discover that Kurt has returned with another offering of pop awesomeness. Is it as good as expected? Duh! If anything, Kurt and the Party Animals have kicked it up a notch with a more guitar-heavy sound. A-side "Girl's Got Money" brings a more rockin' edge without straying from the infectious power pop style that is Kurt's bread and butter. In a perfect world, you'd still hear this kind of song on the radio: punchy, high-energy rock n' roll with a chorus that you just have to sing along with. The lyrics are totally hilarious, and I truly believe this could be a HUGE hit if someone in the "industry" had half a clue. I mean, come on. Who doesn't love a song with a synth solo?! I did not think that Brand New Beat could be topped, but "Girl's Got Money" is Kurt's best song yet!
B-side cut "Yeah? Yeah!" is in a similar vein - just a straight up perfect pop/rock song that sounds totally upbeat and happy until you listen to the lyrics. Songs about heartbreak never go out of style, and again I'm hearing a song that the masses could totally relate to. If there's one major difference between Kurt and a lot of his late '70s/early '80s pop heroes, it's that he doesn't put throwaways on his B-sides! "Yeah? Yeah!" could totally have been an A-side by itself.
All in all, this is looking like a stone cold lock for single of the year. Major credit goes out to Kris Rodgers (keyboards), Geoff Palmer (guitar), Josh Malia (guitar), Zack Sprague (drums), and Kip Brown (lead guitar) for their incredible work backing Kurt on this release. Lots of bands play lip service to the idea of putting the power in power pop. But here we have a band that's actually gone out and done it. I always dig that combination of a hard-rocking band and sugar sweet melodies. When you've got several guys from The Connection in your band, it's hard to go wrong! And this marks the third time that Landon Arkens (mastering) has worked on the production of a Kurt Baker release. I just love that big, crisp sound. You can tell it's a professional job, but the power of the music is heightened rather than dulled. If you haven't already, click that play button and dial up the volume! You'll want to own this record! Act now if you want the vinyl - it's limited to 200 copies and going fast!