IPO Los Angeles 2016
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Artists From Los Angeles/Orange County
Akward Talker – An LA quintet who know their way around a catchy melody and a pretty harmony, Akward Talker draw influences from ’70s power pop & glam rock and ’60s rock n’ roll to create a unique blend of upbeat danceable tunes with darker edgy undertones. Fans of Jefferson Airplane or Slade will dig ‘em!
The Armoires – Hailing from Burbank, and led by duo Rex Broome and Christina Bulbenko, The Armoires draw on influences as diverse as ‘60s sunshine pop, new wave and postpunk, classic country and shoegazer dreampop. Their unique harmonies give life to literate and deeply felt tales of love, loss, confusion and joy, and they can be described as everything from a power pop Gram and Emmylou, a janglier version of X, a new wave Fleetwood Mac, the New Pornographers for the lower 48…to the Postpunk Partridge Family! Their IPO LA showcase is part of the release tour for their debut album, Incidental Lightshow!
Patricia Bahia – Patricia Bahia (pronounced ba-hé-yah) is a Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter and recording artist and ovarian cancer survivor who creates catchy piano-based pop songs that celebrate life’s struggles and triumphs. Her music resonates with cancer survivors and regular folks alike, who find inspiration, solace, and hope through her infectious melodies, expressive voice and soulful lyrics. Fans of Aimee Mann, Joni Mitchell, and Paul McCartney will want to check out her recently released full-length album, Save Your Heart!
Bebopalula – Led by a cadre of young guns who have already achieved great things individually, Bebopalula is swiftly becoming the next super-group to take LA – and quite possibly soon the world – by storm! As the main man of The Greys, Alex Jules released some of the finest modern sunshine pop this side of Ben Folds or The 88 on his Days Old EP, and Emeen Zaroukian (under his Spirit Kid moniker) claimed the #1 spot on my 2014 “Best Of” list with his irresistibly catchy blend of glam and psychedelic garage with energetic jangle pop on his It’s Happening CD, while Chris Price has channeled his passion for ‘60s harmony pop and lush arrangements into both his own work and building a name for himself as a much sought-after producer/arranger, working with the likes of the great Emitt Rhodes! Together as Bebopalula (along with Ben LeCourt and Corey Perez), they make pure ear-candy that fans of The Beach Boys, The Zombies, and ELO will find instantly addictive!
J Scott Bergman – A folk/pop singer/songwriter and orchestral pop composer, J Scott Bergman has been doing his thing in and around the Los Angeles area for quite some time. Influences from George Harrison and Bob Dylan to Jeff Buckley and Joni Mitchell to Leonard Cohen and then some are subtly woven into his own unique sound. His recent Honeydrive album was selected by Amoeba Music for their “Music We Like” display!
Jason Berk – A critically acclaimed singer-songwriter who comes to the west coast (he splits time between Los Angeles and San Francisco) by way of New York, Berk has proven himself to be a musical tour-de-force, teaching himself guitar, bass, keyboards, drums, ukulele, mandolin, and banjo, and garnering nationwide radio-play. His latest album, Coming Home, will appeal to fans of The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Beach Boys, and Elvis Costello, to name but a few! Said fans will also want to watch out for his new one, Everything Old Is New Again, which will be out soon!
Big Air – Songwriter Rob Dobson started Big Air in the hills of central Virginia, where he crafted his own brand of upbeat, riff-heavy fuzz pop. Following the release of the debut EP, Buds, Dobson relocated to sunny Los Angeles and began work on material that would become Big Air’s first full-length, Don’t Care, released in 2015 on Forged Artifacts. Recorded to tape in his bungalow in Echo Park, the album builds on the kinetic energy of the debut EP, while adding denser arrangements, headier atmosphere, and a broader palette of tones. Virginia’s loss is LA’s gain with this one!
The Black Watch – Led since the ‘80s by singer/songwriter John Andrew Frederick, The Black Watch have over the years released 17 (yes, that’s one-seven!) CDs with their unique blend of quirky angular indie-pop with shimmering layers of shoegazer pop and subtle psychedelic and punk touches. Think the love child of My Bloody Valentine and X meets The Beatles…or better yet, pick up a copy of their sixteen-song retrospective, The Best Of The Black Watch, and come to their IPO showcase to hear for yourself!
Blackbird Days – The latest musical project of Los Angeles based singer, songwriter and guitarist Monique St. Walker, Blackbird Days’ music is a blend of classic melodic pop and deep driving indie-rock. The latest EP, My Lobotomy, was produced by Alain Johannes (of Queens of the Stone Age), who also produced Blackbird Days’ debut self-titled album, and has been described as melodic indie rock with a baroque pop twist. Fans of The Beatles and ELO will dig it!
The Bognar Brothers – Nick & Bobby Bognar have long been known, both separately and together, for their clever lyrics, catchy hooks, and enthusiasm with which they play and interact with their audiences and debate which of them is the handsome one. They’re joined by Garner Knutson (the brother from another mother, and Bobby’s long-time band-mate in The Piper Downs), to bring you poignant yet hilarious pop you can actually dance to if you so choose…let the fun commence!
Rob Bonfiglio – IPO audiences may recognize Bonfiglio as one of the main men of Wanderlust, who played the very first IPO in 1998, and who got back together in 2012 to release a great power pop album, Record Time. Bonfiglio’s latest solo album, FREEWAY, embraces a confluence of styles and textures, ranging from beautifully orchestrated soft pop to muscular power pop, and funk-edged Philly soul. He’s a veritable one-man band, playing all the instruments, following in the grand D.I.Y. tradition of artists like Paul McCartney, Todd Rundgren and Prince…and like those artists, he’s pulled off a mighty difficult trick, delivering a cohesive and dynamic sound full of wily invention and innovation. Check it out now!
Celestial – Born in Germany and raised in Northern California, Celestial was surrounded by an array of musical styles growing up. Trained in jazz and contemporary music, she plays the piano, guitar, cello, and ukulele, and has opened for artists ranging from Andy Grammer to Sara Bareilles. She was named a finalist in the 2015 John Lennon Songwriting Contest for her song, “Medicate Me”, and a runner-up in the Song of the Year contest for “Tidal Wave.” Fans of Anita Baker, Amy Winehouse, and Etta James should check out her just released debut EP, Asphyxiate!
David Divad – Produced by the ubiquitous Fernando Perdomo (see below), David Divad’s recent album, Healing Hands, offers a unique blend of upbeat sunshine pop, orchestrated baroque pop and dramatic glam-pop, and their new single, Golden Symphony, turns the baroque arrangements up to 11! Fans of ELO, Queen, The Association, and fellow IPO-er Brandon Schott (see below) NEED to check them out!
Linda Debella & The Satellites – In a style reminiscent of the great ‘70s pop singer-songwriters, DeBella combines smart lyrics with deftly crafted music and vocal arrangements that reflect the spirit of the songs to create a sound that’s both contemporary and classic. While most pop artists shy away from current issues, Linda passionately connects the personal to the political on topics like tolerance, gun violence, and imperialism with a light hand and catchy hooks. Her debut album, Jupiter Moon, will appeal to fans of Paul Simon, Lenny Kravitz, Sara Bareilles, and One Republic.
Evil Maria – After releasing and touring behind three CDs on his Spill Records label, singer/songwriter and guitarist Evren Goknar formed Evil Maria. Their sound evolved into what Goknar describes as maximum garage pop, infusing ‘60s-influenced farfisa and edgy rock elements with pop and early new wave. Their latest release – a limited edition 7” on colored vinyl called The El Dorado Seven Inch – is totally hip!
Kathleen Farless – An accomplished songwriter from the Philippines, Farless’ musical influences include Queen (Freddie Mercury), Coldplay, One Republic and Broadway star Lea Salonga. Described by many as “Broadway meets Coldplay,” her unique and versatile musical style is displayed in each of the original songs on her recently released debut album Masquerade; deep and strongly written while softened by her heartfelt vocals and a catchy melody.
The Fruit Flies – An indie-folk duo consisting of Molly McCormick & Danni Parpan, who recently relocated from The Windy City to sunny LA. These midwest-born-and-raised-corn-fed ladies are the perfect mixture of one part musical talent, one part sassy charm, and two parts inappropriate behavior. They’ll open-mouth kiss you with their witty stage banter, and their catchy tunes will be stuck in your head for weeks and weeks!
The Furious Seasons – Led by David Steinhart, who has been a fixture in the LA pop scene since the ‘80s, with his band Pop Art, and later with his ‘00s project, Smart Brown Handbag. With a penchant for “…warm, literate, preoccupied folk pop, always well crafted…and an aptitude for unpretentious poppy hooks that’s never left him all these years… Steinhart`s been a perennial cottage industry goldmine for those who carry torches for soft, finely crafted, windswept pop.” (Jack Rabid, The Big Takeover) Their upcoming 12 song, three-piece album, Look West, featuring David Steinhart and Paul Nelson on acoustic guitar and vocals, Jeff Steinhart on standup bass is a warm and personal set, highlighting two part harmonies and Paul Nelson’s agile guitar playing. Watch for it!
The Galaxies – With all the power of Pop and all the edge of Rock, The Galaxies’ music is a unique mix of melody, harmony, beat and full-out fun that really rocks!! Each member brings with him knowledge and love of ‘60s pop, ‘70s rock, and today’s energy and excitement! After just one listen, we dare you to try getting the songs on their latest CD, Here We Go!, out of your head!
GoodKids – A quintet of young gents who deliver Transcontinental Neapolitan Psych Rock with a style and sophistication way beyond their years! Fans of artists from The Zombies and The Beatles to The Osmonds (!) and Jethro Tull will want to check them out!
Hand Drawn Maps – An LA three-piece whose “…latest EP, Kites, brings listeners a taste of the beach with a spritz of playful indie-pop. Like a well-garnished appetizer, Kites is a perfect taste of Hand Drawn Maps’ playful indie-pop-rock. Each track has a slightly different flavor, but what ties them together are the rock-solid vocals, poignant lyrics, and consistent instrumentation.” (Krisann Janowitz, Independent Clauses). If you like Death Cab For Cutie and Elliott Smith, Hand Drawn Maps is the band for you!
The Hollow Suns – Whether you’re into rock n’ roll, bluesy garage, psychedelic groove rock, or soft shoegazer pop, watch out! The subtle hooks on The Hollow Suns’ self-titled album can easily reel you in and have you swaying along with their riffs before you know it!
The Hour Zero – The latest project fronted by the prolific Lisa “Elsie” Mychols (The Masticators, NuShu) and Tom Richards (The Waking Hours), so you know it’s going to be good! In this incarnation, they’re joined by John Carlucci (The Fuzztones, and currently a DJ at Little Steven’s Underground Garage), Laura Carlucci (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang), and Dave Palamaro (Go Set Go) to create some of the coolest and catchiest power pop/garage, drawing influences from new wave, post-punk, mod, ska, surf, and a little bit of everything in between. They’ve got a couple of singles out on YouTube that have us eagerly awaiting an album!
Zach Jones & The Transatlantics – With an encyclopedic knowledge of yesterday’s music and an awareness and appreciation for today’s, Zach Jones’s music combines the raw energy and style of the ‘60s British pop explosion with ‘70s power pop and the soulful expression of R&B that poured from Motown & Stax. While paying tribute to the music he loves, yet expanding beyond tradition in sound and arrangement, Jones has created a fresh musical melting pot of modern rock, pop, and soul. His latest album is titled Love What You Love, and we’re fairly certain that IPO-ers will love Zach Jones & The Transatlantics!
The Kendricks – Both their 2015 debut EP, Farewell, and the recently released Fire At Sea were built organically in a house on a hill in Temecula Valley. Influenced heavily by the starry desert skies and the coyotes that visited the band in the dark nights while they produced their records, these songs are soulful and hard, stripped yet hued by velvety milieu through rich guitar work and sentimental influences. Lyrically, The Kendricks strike center between abstract theories in thermodynamics, the guttural humanity of war-time politics, and Spanish Civil War references. You will hear nods to classic and folk rock, vintage alternative, and a good sense for pop.
Corey Landis – Whether or not he chooses to admit it, Landis typifies the recent resurgence of gifted twenty-somethings that evoke the “golden” singer-songwriter age of the ‘70s. The ubiquitous melodies of Elton, Joel, Springsteen, Cohen, Waits, Zevon and Newman hover over Landis’ shoulder like older siblings, and he uses those influences to create his own brand of rollicking power pop. Check out his latest self-titled album with his new band, Corey Landis And The Attacks!
Justin Levinson – Inspired by the music of ‘60s greats such as The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and The Zombies, Levinson’s music offers a unique blend of Beatlesque melodies and modern indie rock/pop. His songwriting prowess has earned him quite a few accolades, including Billboard Song Contest Winner, International Acoustic Music Awards (Best New Male Artist), and a nomination For Sirius Songwriter Discovery of the Year. Check out any of his albums and his IPO showcase to hear why!
The Living Dolls – Mix power pop, rock, psychedelic, garage, mod, and punkv arena rock from the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s and ‘00s, and you’ll get an idea of the sound of The Living Dolls! They’re an alternative blend of old and new; somehow familiar yet strangely unrecognizable. Their self-titled CD is garnering rave reviews from their home in the beautiful San Fernando Valley to Ohio to Sweden, and points in between.
Love Axe – The character of Love Axe resides in a pop-music space with melodies and transitions that ring with a composer’s artistry – these songs are too advanced to be pop, yet they are, and they’re really catchy. Their second full-length release, South Dakota, is the culmination of pop, psych, and golden-era indie influences. “Major-label production on an indie budget that’s virtually void of trend worship and hype. In its place, the band treads on earnestness, swooning dynamics and crack songcraft. The guitars crunch in all the right places, the harmonies kick in quick, raising the hair on the back of your neck, and the hooks stick in your brain for days; couldn’t ask for very much more.” (Raven Sings The Blues)
The Love-Inns – An indie/alternative punk rock trio, The Love-Ins are influenced by the likes of The Bangles, Iggy Pop, X, and The Dictators. Come out to their IPO showcase for a fun-filled high-octane dose of melody that fans of pop punk, post punk, alt-rock and power pop can all enjoy!
Marston – The solo outfit of the intriguing and engaging Mr.Peter Marston, who has graced the stage of many an IPO as the long-time leader of the band Shplang (see below). Marston’s solo CD, The Invisible Girl, is his most eclectic yet, very pretty at times but still a whole lotta fun!
Math & Science – Quirky, subversive, and fun are just a few of the adjectives to describe the unique musical stylings of this project led by the inimitable Mr. John Wolf. Math & Science pools everything it remembers from the shining moments of ‘60s and ‘70s rock to produce new rock/pop gems that are extremely evocative, while also retaining a palpable originality. Wolf’s vocals remain as intimate as ever atop a foundation of grooves echoing the Beatles, Velvet Underground, and Tom Petty. Their brand new CD, Math & Science Olympiad, channels The Cars and The Beatles’ White Album, but will also appeal to fans of Zappa and The Kinks and anyone else who’s cool, so check it out now!
The Middle of Nowhere – Though originally from Vero Beach, FL, main man Sam Marine now makes his home in LA, a journey that is reflected in his recent album, New Home. His latest project, The Middle of Nowhere, a five-piece Americana/psychedelic alt-rock powerhouse of a band, will appeal to fans of Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, and R.E.M.!
Mothdrops – Brought to you by Andrew Giurgiun (Vocals/Guitar/Keys), Jake Stein (Vocals/Guitar/Keys/Mix), Brendan Snyder (Guitar/Drums/Noise), Keveen Baudouin (Bass), and
Shane Graham (Drum), Mothdrops offer the finest in post-apocalyptic proto-glamcore Gameboy-rock. Not your usual IPO band for sure, but this stuff is so catchy, you can’t help but like it!
New Maximum Donkey – “New Maximum Donkey is poised and ready to make a charge at the world of music with a brand of power-pop that is all their own, fueled by a wry sense of humor and rich melodies that have you singing along by the 2nd time through the disc.” (Jeff Johnson, CDReviews.com) Said disc, Square Root of All Evil, will appeal to fans of artists as diverse as The Ramones, UB40, Frankie Lymon, Jet, and The Banana Splits! One of the most entertaining bands we’ve ever had at IPO!
Pacific Soul Ltd. – We are honored to welcome this latest collaboration of three noteworthy musicians: Adam Marsland, Norman Kelsey, and Teresa Cowles, who crossed the pond with us to play IPO Liverpool in 2015, to do their thing at IPO LA! Together they weave American Beach Pop and ‘70s R&B sounds into an exciting musical collaboration that must be heard to be believed! Their debut double A-sided single “Blue Summertime”/”Tomorrow Brings Tonight” was produced by Marsland and features the dynamic vocal chemistry of Kelsey& Cowles.
The Paparazzi – Known primarily as a sideman for Cat Power, Harper Simon, and others, main man Erik Paparazzi has been a pop meister extraordinaire in his own right. These days he has Chris Price, Alex Jules, and other likeminded artists playing with him, so you know you’re in for a treat! Expect a lush and dreamy ride that harnesses the best moves of several purveyors of lost classics and lost weekends: Brian Wilson, Harry Nilsson, and Todd Rundgren, etc….
Fernando Perdomo – Re-located to LA from his former home of Miami Beach where he led Dreaming In Stereo, whose churning style of music was coined by band and press alike as Progressive Pop, an eclectic mix of ‘70s Progressive Rock and ‘90s power pop! His latest full-length, Warm, is full of symphonic arrangements and out of the box instrumentation, but with an underlying pop catchiness and melodicism that makes the songs truly unforgettable. He’s also a label head (Forward Motion Records) and producer extraordinaire (the latest album by pop legend Andy Pratt, among others – including a few fellow IPO performers!), and a member or guest of more bands than we can count! Look out for his new album, Voyeurs, soon!
Plasticsoul – Led by singer/songwriter/producer Steven Wilson, who over the past decade has been performing various roles in multiple bands while compiling a large catalogue of original, dynamic pop songs. The latest Plasticsoul CD, Peacock Swagger, took the top spot on several “best CDs of 2009” lists – check it out for yourself and you’ll hear why! The long-awaited new album, The Girl of Many Tribes, will be out very soon, and is available on the Plasticsoul website for pre-order now!
Popdudes – This Orange County combo led by Sparkle*jets UK main man Mike Simmons and drummer/pop-journalist/author John Borack , are sure to please with a multitude of cover tunes done in their inimitable fashion…along with some groovy originals! A revolving cast of supporting players that reads like a Who’s Who in the LA power pop underground scene adds to the fun!
Chris Price – An engaging artist, whose inspiration for his latest CD, Homesick, came from the great albums of the ‘60s, which used limitations to enhance creativity. The album was recorded entirely on an iPhone using just a four-track app and the mic of the phone. The result is pure ear candy filled with lush strings, clear vocals, and captivating melodies. Check it out now! Price is also a one of the driving forces behind Bebopalula (see above) and a producer extraordinaire, having worked on the latest album by Emitt Rhodes (!), among others!
The RAZ Band – A band who proudly proclaim they are older than your parents, and who have been rocking and rolling for over 30 years! The band is built around Michael Raz and Jeff Hutchinson, who have been playing together since their high school days in New Jersey, but are now based in LA, and often features some of their long-time pop and rock heroes, such as Joey Molland (of Badfinger) and Jim Vitale (who has toured with Joe Walsh) as members of the band! Their latest CD, Madison Park, was named 2015 Album of the Year by Roadie Crew Magazine Editor Airton Diniz, proving that – like fine wine – some things only get better with age!
The Resonant Heads – Take one listen to the layers of gorgeous vocal harmonies that surf upon intricate melodies and a dynamic rhythmic core, and it becomes obvious that not only is this band revisiting that classic California sound, but they are reinventing it. As the title of their latest CD proclaims, This Is Getting Fun!
Romance & Rebellion – All American pop-rockers Romance & Rebellion are the product of four individuals believing that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Brought together by Manifest Destiny and unified under the principle that the song is king, they’ve teamed up with veteran producer Stefan Litrownik (Andy Grammer, One Direction) to create six infectious, guitar-driven, tear-your-heart-out pop tracks about burgeoning love, love loss, and infedelious exes on their debut self-titled EP. Fans of artists from The Beatles and The Beach Boys to Weezer and Panic! At The Disco will want to check it out!
Ruby Free – Any project led by the one and only Mr. Rick Hromadka (of Maple Mars fame) is sure to be good, and Ruby Free does not disappoint! Featuring Hromadka and his wife/choirgirl, Lisa Cavaliere, the songs on Ruby Free’s debut album, Introducing Ruby Free, meld all kinds of psych, softpop, and early ‘70s radio pop influences, from Brian Wilson to McCartney & Wings to ELO to The Steve Miller Band!
Morty Shallman – Creator of the world’s first Novel with Songs, Last of the Zacharys, this dapper, affable Angelino is known for his cutting-edge mashups of pop songs and pulp fiction. Fusing elements of disco, dance pop, indie pop, alt-rock and EDM, with soaring melodies, intelligent lyrics and classic pop song craft, Shallman serves up a glowing succession of catchy tunes and infectious beats that will brighten the playlists of listeners, dancers, youtubers and radio programmers alike. Check out his latest EP and video project, HALO, and come to his IPO showcase to see and hear for yourself!
The Shamus Twins – Yeah, you’re right, there aren’t any real twins in this band, but their sibling-like harmonies, intelligent lyrics, unique arrangements and infectious songcraft will make you forgive their nom de faux pas. If you like loud guitars, harmonies, jangle, and twang, you’ll want to pick up both of their excellent CDs!
Ken Sharp – IPO is honored to host the official release show for Sharp’s brand new CD, New Mourning, as this gentlemen keeps reinventing himself and getting better and better with each release! None other than Eric Carmen has said “With his new CD, Ken continues to explore the essence of power pop, this time with a harder edge, and some fine guitar and vocal work from Rick Springfield. He’s also found a new depth and confidence in his lyric writing, his voice and his production on this new recording. It’s his best work yet!”
Ships Have Sailed – Since their inception, Ships Have Sailed have always struck a balance between exuberant pop and substantial alternative rock, a formula for success that has earned them both a loyal following and numerous accolades from ISC, Unsigned Only and The John Lennon Songwriting Competition. Whether doing it slick and electric, as they do on their debut album, Moodswings, or mellow and acoustic, as exemplified by their EP, Whispers, their soaring melodies and heartfelt delivery will stick with you long after the last note of their songs! IPO is honored to have them as the first band ever that’s scheduled to play all six stops in a row of our West Coast tour!!
Shplang – They’ve long been mainstays of the L.A. music scene, have lots of excellent CDs, including their most recent release, My Big Three Wheeler, and have a very cool, unique sound as well, with swirling psychedelics meeting solid pop sensibilities. One minute they’re sounding like the Strawberry Alarm Clock, the next: The Stranglers. Intrigued? Check ’em out!
Sitcom Neighbor – They’re a band who wear their late ‘60s and early ‘70s Brit-pop sensibilities proudly on their sleeves. Here’s what CD Baby has to say about their self-titled debut: “Quarter and thinly slice one Apple (green, red or white label, 1968 vintage approx) add one cup Kinks, one teaspoon XTC and a pinch of Nilsson.” Yup, pretty much, and their latest, Charm, is even better, gracing my Top 10 of 2012! They’ve got a new disc in the works, and will be giving us an exciting sneak peak at their IPO Showcase, so don’t miss it!
Gary Stockdale – Nominated for two PRIMETIME EMMYS, and recipient of a BMI Award for Music Composition for his work on “Penn & Teller: BULLSHIT,” Stockdale pens catchy and witty theatrical pop songs that fans of Elton John, Randy Newman, and They Might Be Giants will surely appreciate. Check out his new CD, Sure Of Mice Elf, and his IPO Showcase, to hear for yourself!
Thorcraft Cobra – Canadian cold meets California cool in this power duo consisting of Billy Zimmer, formerly of The Brown-Eyed Susans, and Tammy Glover, who has spent the past few years touring the world as the drummer for Sparks! “Count Me Out,” the lead single from their debut album, Count It In, reached #9 on the Alternative Specialty radio charts, and fans of artists such as Radiohead, Sparks, Jason Falkner, Raconteurs, and Cheap Trick will want to be on the lookout for said album!
Tiny Stills – If you miss heartfelt songwriting framed with indie-pop production ala Rilo Kiley, Tegan and Sara, That Dog or Letters to Cleo, then Tiny Stills will be your newest musical fling. Crunchy guitars, quirky instrumentation, and buttery smooth vocals that aren’t afraid to get aggressive, and front lady Kailynn West isn’t afraid to leave her heart on stage. Their new EP, Falling Is Like Flying, is now available!
The Trainwrecks – The band led by Garner Knutson, known to many a pop fan as the guitarist of The Piper Downs; they’ve got a powerful, punk-pop sound that fans of The Piper Downs, Green Day, and more traditional power pop will love! Check out their debut full length self-titled CD, which was well worth the wait!
Tremelo Lights – The new band fronted by singer/songwriter Stacy Cole, who moved from Missouri to the west coast to follow her musical dreams, and has since written, recorded, and produced three works: one full album, one instrumentals album, and her latest EP release, California. Her soprano voice is both soulful and angelic, and her tone and themes of love, freedom, triumph, and vulnerability will magnetically capture you. She is truly a unique writer and pop singer, and the band provides just the right amount of depth.
U.S. Artists From Outside of Los Angeles/Orange County
Blame The Bishop – A band based out of Citrus Heights, CA who exist at the intersection where traditional American rock and British pop meet. The band’s namesake and guitarist/singer, Warren Bishop, and fellow guitarist/singer Todd Weber have been playing together for 11 years through The Holy Men/The Onlymen combination before a reboot as Blame The Bishop. In addition to their original songs, the band often will dig into their collective memories and pull out some choice covers, so this is one show you will not want to miss! Check out their recently released New & Used, a collection of their recordings from 2009 through 2015!
Cait Brennan – A singer-songwriter from Tempe AZ with a unique brand of glitter glam soulful rock n’ roll sung straight from the heart. Plus, you gotta love anyone who can channel Roy Orbison, Elton John, Freddy Mercury, John Lennon, and Etta James in the space of a single set! Her recently released Debutante album has been shooting up the Amazon singer/songwriter charts, and has some critics already naming it as a contender for album of the year…check it out for yourself to hear why! She recently inked a demo deal with Sire Records; how cool is that??
The Jeremy Band – The eponymous band led by one of the most genuine, nicest people on the pop scene, as well as one of the most prolific pop artists around. His gentle, John Lennon-influenced pop is as spiritual as it is melodic, and you can hear this for yourself on all of his CDs. This Michigander and his band can stake their rightful place in the IPO Hall Of Fame!
Blake Jones & The Trike Shop – Hailing from the unlikely hamlet of Kingsburg, California, this ensemble uses just about every instrument under the sun to create some bizarre, witty, quirky, yet ultimately melodic sounds, and have become an IPO fan favorite from LA to Liverpool! Their latest CD, Teasers from the Whispermaphone, is a rollicking romp through a Seuss-ian soundscape painted by Frank Zappa! Definitely something a little bit different!
RAY PAUL & RPM – Former Boston and L.A. power pop pioneer Ray Paul returns to IPO on the heels of the release of Whimsicality, his first new release since his critically acclaimed career compilation, The Charles Beat, in 2000. Guest appearances on the record include both luminaries of the genre and standout favorites amount the underground pop intelligista, such as Clem Burke (Blondie), Emitt Rhodes, Kristin Pinell Reil & Kurt Reil (The Grip Weeds), Terry Draper (Klaatu), Gar Francis (The Doughboys) and Walter Clevenger. The album features Paul’s fiery, visceral brand of original Beatlesque pop, and has been hailed by John M. Borack of Goldmine Magazine as “The first great power pop record of 2016!” Check it out now!
Steve Rosenbaum – If you like sweet jangly power pop (and who doesn’t? – whether or not they admit it!), you will LOVE the music of this gent from San Diego! Fans of Big Star, The Raspberries, and The Plimsouls – to name but a few – should check out his songs, “First in Class,” on last year’s IPO CD, and “Take It Slow” on this year’s edition, and come to his live show!
The Super Fuzz – Described by one morning TV show host as “Scooby-Doo meets The Blues Brothers,” The Super Fuzz makes no apologies about wearing their classic rock sensibilities on their sleeve while infusing them with ‘70s-style production reminiscent of the post-punk movement. With influences from Jellyfish and Redd Kross to The Beatles and The Beach Boys, the group’s debut CD, Art Noise, is a 12-song reflection of the their unabashed love of guitar rock and indie pop. Come on out to their IPO showcase and share the love with them!
The Tearaways – They’ve been putting out sweet harmony-filled ear candy and crunchy powerpop gems since 1981, and are still going strong! They performed on the Arsenio Hall Show after their 10th year performing at the Mathew Street Festival in Liverpool! Their 50-song recording project with famed producer Earle Mankey, The Earle Mankey Sessions Vol. IV and The Earle Mankey Sessions Vol. VII was recently released on Robo Records, A Division of Universal Music. Their latest single “We’re All Gonna Drink Tonight” b/w the classic Badfinger song “Baby Blue” was also recently released on Robo Records/Universal Music and is now available on iTunes. At their IPO show we’ll be treated to Clem Burke on drums, and none other than Bo Donaldson on keyboards! Definitely one of Santa Barbara, California’s finest!
Jesse Vaz and The Velvet Reign – Vaz may be familiar to some as the lead singer and co-founder of Tramps In Stereo, whose recent Perfectly Broken CD melded ‘80s new wave influences with classic guitar rock. His solo project with his new band, The Velvet Reign, is even better, offering up an unabashedly retro feel-good blend of power pop and glam that fans of T Rex, The Beatles, and ELO will surely enjoy! We can’t wait for a debut CD!!
Josh Johnstone & The Stanleys – After being based in Melbourne and touring throughout the east coast of Australia, The USA, UK, Europe and Asia in his various bands for several years, Josh moved back to his home town of Fremantle, where he’s been busy writing and recording his recently released debut album, Call in Whispers, with Eskimo Joe’s Joel Quartermain. Taking cues from the sounds of Boy & Bear, The Temper Trap, Matt Corby and Bob Evans, and marrying them with the pop sensibilities of acts like Foster The People and Empire Of The Sun, Johnstone’s experience writing for a range of stylistically different projects has given him the perfect education to meld rock and pop in sublimely diverse and catchy ways. Check it out now!
The Stanleys – Meeting and forming the band over Myspace, Australia’s Mark Di Renzo (Gigantic) and Jamie Horsburgh collaborated with Norway’s Tomas Dahl (Turbonegro), eventually hitting studios in Oslo, Paris, Perth and Sydney to track their first generation of songs. Their debut, The Always EP, is an infectious slice of power pop that will appeal to fans of classic bands such as The Cars and Cheap Trick! They’ve been locked in studios in Australia and Europe tinkering away on their debut album but are breaking on out for their 6th tour of the USA, the Democrats and Republicans Tour, and we’re thrilled that IPO can be a part of it!