Tony Cox-On the Way. After a successful and well-received debut in the power pop community with 2009's Unpublished, Tony Cox is back with On the Way, and he's topped himself in the process. As with Unpublished, Tony enlists pop utilityman Nigel Clark (who can be heard with Dodgy, The Offbeat, and his own solo disc) on vocals, and the combination is another winner. Opener "We'll Get High" is a perfect pop confection, a slice of 60s-pop with a hint of soulfulness. "Hold Me Angeline" is reminiscent of Clark's work in The Offbeat, while "The Way" evokes The Association with a Nuggets-styled sheen. And "Curse of Love" could pass for a lost Zombies classic. This could the album of the year for those who love 60s-styled sunshine pop.
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Rollo Time-Victims of the Crown. It's Rollo Time again, as this Chicago-area band returns with the followup to their 2007 self-titled debut. Once again, they show a great facility for melding classic rock and power pop, and that's apparent right off the bat with "You Can Talk" and "Sick and Tired", a pair of tracks that will appeal to fans of bands like The Shazam and Superdrag. "Eyman Prison" tells the story of a frustrated prisoner (of a real Arizona prison) to a power pop beat, while the midtempo janglers "Madeline Says" and "I Can't Believe This Day" are also standouts.
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