Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Review: Gavin Guss “On High”

Power pop

Power pop fans no doubt have heard Gavin Guss in some way already, whether it was as producer of Super Deluxe or as front man for TubeTop and The Tycoons. He's toured with Nada Surf and provided piano accompaniment for Jon Auer (Posies), Fountains of Wayne, and Harvey Danger. His long-awaited solo debut, “Mercury Mine” was released to wide acclaim in 2010 (reviewed here).

From the first note of “Avenue A” to the closing sounds of “Lesson One”, Guss takes us on a delightful power pop journey that is as equally uplifting as it is melancholy. This is a balance Guss achieves in his songwriting, as he puts it: like dancing in your socks. The songs are short and sweet, but make quite the impression, percolating with keen melodies that will stick with you for days. Guss also showcases his knack for crafting buoyant harmonies (check out “Voices Inside My Head” for a demonstration). While it is best digested whole, some of my favorite picks include “Come Over”, “Wonder Too”, “Will To Fly”, and “Parc Monceau”.

“On High” was released on vinyl by Fin Records, which comes with a special download code to access the mp3 files. A must for power pop fans, especially those who enjoy the Posies, Mike Viola, or Gigolo Aunts.

Gavin Guss - Official site.

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