Britpop may have passed from favor in the U.K., but now there’s a spate of American bands following in the footsteps of the Oasises and Blurs of the world. Plastiscene sound like a band from Manchester circa 1994 and it took several reads of the band’s press kit to convince me that there wasn’t an Englishman in the bunch. Singer Roger Gisborne sings with a Manc/Merseyside swagger that recalls Liam Gallagher, John Power (Cast), and Tony Griffiths (The Real People).
In any event, Seeing Stars proves that there’s still plenty of life and relevance in the Britpop genre and tracks like “Who Are You” and “She Goes On” find the band moving beyond stadium anthem strumming and exploring a wide range of dynamics, along the lines of Radiohead and the Smashing Pumpkins. “She Goes On” is a standout that begins as soft orchestral pop and explodes into psychedelic distortion by the midpoint. “Times Don’t Change” is Beatlesque in a summery pop kind of way and the strong beat of “Sundial” make this song destined for a concert favorite. Seeing Stars is great pop all the way around that may be a bit derivative, but who cares when the band’s influences are so impeccable.
// Notes from the Road
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