JoDee Purkeypile-October House. If the name sounds familiar to you, it's because JDP was the frontman of The Alice Rose, a Texas band who put out a pair of outstanding Jon-Brion-meets-Squeeze indie pop albums in the last 5 years. The obvious parallel here is Greg Pope; like Pope, Purkeypile plays all the instruments here, and in the same manner as when Pope left Edmund's Crown, the solo flight has allowed Purkeypile to distill the essence of the sound he first forged in the band setting. So this is more Jon Brion than Squeeze, and that's a good thing here as "Disappear from Here" is among the best songs he's written, a swirling pop gem in a minor key. "Your Days Ends as Mine Begins" is first-rate guitar pop, and the rollicking "Company Man" has a Jellyfish by way of Michael Penn vibe. Elsewhere, "Summer Sunday" is a lovely slice of mellow indie pop, and the propulsive "Autumn Mind" channels Neil Finn. I could see this one ending up in 2011's top 20.
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Marshall Holland-Statistically I Should Say. San Francisco's Marshall Holland put out an overlooked gem in 2004 titled Don't Jettison the Memories, an album of first-rate power pop in the style of Brendan Benson and The Posies. He re-released it last year, and has followed that up with Statistically I Should Say, an EP of new material. Don't miss him this around, as this might be the best power pop EP of 2011. From the urgent opener "Your Lies" to the perfect power pop of "I'm OK (for Now)" - the album's best track - to the buoyant, synth-happy "Meet Me by the Blue Balloon", Holland give us a welcome return. So after you've digested this confection, make sure you go back and get Don't Jettison the Memories.
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