Linus of Hollywood

Your Favorite Record

by David Fufkin

 

This recording burst out of nowhere to tremendous underground acclaim on the Internet among various persons who understand the beauty of a hook and high harmonies. Fans of Jellyfish, The Grays, The Wondermints and bands that fall under the rubric of Brian Wilson-influenced pop will not be dissappointed by this disc. The one artist I hear the most of comparison-wise is Emitt Rhodes who released a couple of great albums on Dunhill in the late ‘60s/early ‘70s. Like Rhodes, whose material was compared to the early solo material of Paul McCartney, Linus exhibits a unique sense of melody and song structure.

Brimming with hooks, Linus’ material tears page after page from the songbook of pop where tension in the verses is created quickly so that the choruses explode onto the listener’s ears. Ultimately, like the great Brian Wilson, Linus’ material is musical in the sense that he uses various instruments to great effect, eliminating a sameness that surrounds some pop releases.

cover art

Linus of Hollywood

Your Favorite Record

(PopSquad)

The compositions are strong, his voice is pleasant and the performances shine. Personal favorites are “Heavenly” whose semi-staccato organ riff on the chorus becomes indelibly stamped on your synapses after one listen. Another standout track is “When I Get to California.” This track captures the “California” sound given birth by Brian Wilson and redefined by bands like The Association and The Mamas and The Papas.

An amazing fact about this recording is that it was tracked almost entirely at home on a hard disk recorder not much bigger than a shoebox. It is a testament to Linus’ skill, and a startling revelation for those who are adamant that it is impossible to make a record at home that sounds like something produced at a major studio.

This is one of the finest releases by a pop or power pop band in the last year or two, simple as that.

Your Favorite Record

Rating:

 

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong on the Internet. Please consider a donation to support our work as independent cultural critics and historians. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where costs have risen and advertising has dropped precipitously. We need your help to keep PopMatters strong and growing. Thank you.

 

//comments
//related
//Mixed media
//Blogs

Call for Essays on Topics in Culture; Present, Past and the Speculative Future

// Announcements

"PopMatters (est. 1999) is a respected source for smart long-form reading on a wide range of topics in culture. PopMatters serves as…

READ the article