Friday, April 26, 2013

VA - Pure Spun Sugar: An International Pop Compilation (1998, American Pop Project/Candy Floss)

Pure Spun Sugar's premise is that it's a decidedly anti-punk affair...but it's not all twee sweetness and light as it's title and cover art misleadingly project.  One of the album's key commonalities (with only a couple of exceptions) is it's emphasis on female-fronted groups.  So how does Pure Spun miraculously almost never exude a "chick-rock" vibe among it's fourteen grooves?  Chalk that up to a bevy of indie talents who more than get by with quality songwriting that completely transcends gender lines.

The highlights here are numerous.  Japan's Dizzy Joghurt contribute an exuberant slice of Shonen-like power pop in "Noncense Is Good," Dressy Bessy pitch us the indelibly hooky, mid-tempo "Makeup," and the San Diego based Sleazy Beats lend Pure Spun a pre-homicide paean to Phil Spector, that in retrospect is really how we'd all like to remember him (if we only could).  BTW, I wonder how that fella is holdin' up these days?  The album soon after pivots to the classic indie aplomb of Poastal, who emanate the old school Slumberland Records sound big time. Sweden's Aquadays take the cake as far as this comp's sublime quotient goes, with a Lush-ious stab at chiming dream pop, "Gem."  Red Dye No. 5, Balloon Chase Team and Twig all hit the indie guitar-pop g-spot, in that mid-90s sort of way.  Brian Jonestown Massacre are a surprise entry (and commercially, the biggest draw) that Pure Spun has to offer, with what appears to be a Bowie cover.  The big payoff for me comes relatively early on, courtesy of The Cherry Smash, whose "Split Screen" is an immense surge of gazey-guitars (think Fudge, early Lilys) and intoxicating harmonies to trade a limb for.  I put up a single of theirs quite some time ago that you would do well to investigate.  As for the scan of the album sleeve, let's just say light pink and grey don't make for the most complimentary colors.

01. Balloon Chase Team - White Star
02. The Cherry Smash - Split Screen
03. Jenny Mae - Ralston
04. Dizzy Joghurt - Noncense Is Good
05. Bidston Moss - Silver Top Taxi
06. Dressy Bessy - Makeup
07. The Sleazy Beats - Phil Spector's Birthday Song
08. Poastal - Kicked in the Face
09. Aquadays - Gem
10. Red Dye No. 5 - Hope
11. Cuckooland - Rock On
12. The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Good Morning Girl
13. Twig - Clock
14. Azalia Snail - Getting Lei'd

1 comment:

12vjoe said...

Looks intriguing - thanks!